Honor Magic Watch hands-on
“Honor’s stab at a fitness-focused smartwatch impresses with its compact dimension and placing colours.”
Colourful, balanced design appropriate for all wrists
Robust battery life
Diversified strap and colour choices
No U.S. launch
Shorter battery life than Watch GT
Watch making shouldn’t be a precise science. Simply because a timepiece has a spherical face and a strap, doesn’t mechanically imply it’s a watch everybody will need to put on. Moreover, whereas we’re used to touchscreens on smartwatches principally measuring 1.Four-inches, this isn’t the “supreme” watch dimension. It’s a technological constraint, and one we’re compelled to stay with.
The Honor Watch Magic is an ideal instance of simply how effective the road is between what makes a smartwatch engaging and wearable, and what doesn’t. It’s basically the identical because the Huawei Watch GT in that it has twin buttons on the right-hand aspect, a coronary heart fee sensor on the again, and is constituted of a mixture of plastic and metallic. Nevertheless, the Watch GT has a bigger display than the Magic Watch, and this makes an enormous distinction in who will need to put on it, and the way good it seems to be after they do.
Smaller display, higher seems to be
Honor has used a 1.2-inch, 390 x 390 pixel AMOLED display on the Watch Magic, moderately than the 1.Four-inch on the Huawei Watch GT. This can be a neat, smooth, smartwatch that matches naturally on the wrist, no matter its dimension. Due to the diminished physique dimension, the aspect mounted buttons are additionally nearer collectively, which helps with the watch’s proportions. Not like the Apple Watch, the smaller watch face doesn’t look too mini on bigger wrists both, exhibiting Honor has obtained the stability good. It has additionally chosen its colours effectively, with the darkish blue mannequin’s fantastic blue bezel an actual standout.
Andy Boxall/Digital Tendencies
The bezel is a nod to chronograph timepieces, and with the numbers across the edge and “Tachymeter” written within the prime nook, the Watch Magic takes its design inspiration from the Tag Heuer Formulation One. This can be a strictly sporty look, which is nice for the blue, black, and silver variations, however not so for Watch Dream, the identify given to the pink, apricot white, and particular purple Vivienne Tam version. These are clearly designed for girls, because the straps are smaller than the blue and purple fashions, but the chronograph model seems to be a bit misplaced matched to those colours.
This can be a neat, smooth, smartwatch that matches naturally on the wrist, no matter its dimension.
Elsewhere there are some nice design touches. The colour-coordinated band across the prime button provides it extra character, as does the textured fringe of the physique. We wore the leather-based and the silicone rubber straps, which had been comfy and engaging, and the 9mm slim profile of the Watch Magic noticed it simply slip underneath our shirt cuff. It’s actually gentle too, at round 32 grams.
The Vivienne Tam mannequin’s leather-based strap has the model emblem embossed on it, however in any other case the watch seems the identical. A double-tour wrap round model of the strap was proven in the course of the presentation, however wasn’t on show for us to see.
Software program and battery
Honor has additionally used Huawei’s Lite OS, the corporate’s new wearable system working system launched on the Watch GT. It appeared to function barely extra easily on the Watch Magic than the GT, sliding between the principle screens with ease, though we didn’t use it for lengthy sufficient to say it’s constantly higher than the Watch GT. It operates by means of swipes to the left and proper, and up and down. It’s quick to entry the principle options, equivalent to the guts fee display and notifications, but it surely isn’t a feature-packed piece of software program.
Just like the Watch GT, the Honor Watch Magic is neither a full smartwatch with Google’s Put on OS, or a hybrid — it’s extra carefully associated to a health tracker. That it places these options inside a extra conventional watch design than a health band makes it tempting, and there’s little doubt the Watch Magic’s model and luxury makes it wearable on a regular basis. It’s additionally swim-proof and comes with particular stroke monitoring performance, plus it has built-in GPS, making it versatile for health followers too.
Honor says the battery will final seven days with 24-hour coronary heart fee monitoring energetic, however the Watch Magic and Dream appear to be lacking the lengthy 30-day battery lifetime of the Watch GT, presumably as a consequence of the smaller physique and display. This can be a disgrace and whereas seven days continues to be higher than most touchscreen smartwatches, it’s nonetheless not as fascinating as 30 days.
Honor has labored its magic
Watches are private gadgets, and diverse kinds are important as one dimension and form doesn’t match all. Shrinking down the Watch GT to Watch Magic dimension makes it visually extra interesting — one thing we’ve noticed earlier than with the Tag Heuer Linked Modular 41 in comparison with the bigger Linked Modular 45 — and the slimmer, lighter physique makes it extra wearable for extra folks.
The Watch Magic’s model and luxury makes it wearable on a regular basis.
The choice to only change the strap and accent colour for the Watch Dream is an odd one. We’d moderately have seen the Dream change into its personal watch, with its personal design, moderately than this primary alteration. We’re undecided who will purchase the Dream, however applaud Honor for not less than attempting to differ the Watch Magic’s attraction.
How a lot will you pay, and the place can you purchase one? Honor will launch the Watch Magic and the Watch Dream within the U.Ok., France, Germany, Spain, and Italy first, the place it’s going to value 180 euros (round $200). The U.Ok. worth has not been confirmed, however is prone to be round 180 British kilos. This is similar worth because the Watch GT. It’s available for purchase from January 22. A U.S. launch has not been introduced.