“Trendy and long-lasting, the Watch GT almost has all of it, however absent music options go away us baffled.”
Wonderful battery life
Trendy, wearable design
Robust health monitoring options
Works with Android and iOS
Not accessible within the U.S.
Software program wants refinement
No music streaming or Bluetooth headphone connection
Huawei has noticed what it believes is a spot within the wearables market, and has created the Watch GT to fill it. What’s it? It’s not a smartwatch that runs Google’s Put on OS, a hybrid smartwatch, or a health tracker. It matches someplace in-between, and reveals what Huawei has been engaged on whereas it takes a sabbatical from Put on OS watches.
The Watch GT isn’t a hybrid smartwatch as a result of it has a touchscreen. However it occupies the house between health tracker and full smartwatch in an analogous means. If all this sounds somewhat complicated, we agree, and it aptly sums up the watch general.
Huawei understands tips on how to make a handsome smartwatch. The unique Huawei Watch is a design triumph, and nonetheless stands tall amongst smartwatches launched immediately. The Watch GT isn’t as stunning, is significantly extra masculine, but it surely’s nonetheless very watch-like. When you like sportier watches, then the Watch GT’s look will enchantment, very like the Huawei Watch 2. We prefer it, and discover its understated type refreshing. The principle case is available in chrome steel or black DLC (diamond-level coating) and is matched to a plastic rear plate, which feels low-cost and at odds with the ceramic bezel across the display screen.
It’s slim at solely 10.6mm thick, so it appears like a standard watch on the wrist, the place it is vitally comfy. The sunshine 46 gram weight means it’s straightforward to overlook you’re sporting it, and we additionally managed to sleep via the evening with it on. Loosening the strap first, it didn’t get sweaty and uncomfortable.
The 1.Four-inch, 454 x 454 decision AMOLED display screen isn’t surrounded by a big bezel. Paired with a slim physique, all the watch appears to be like surprisingly compact. It match our average-sized wrist with no downside, however we don’t assume the masculine design will enchantment to everybody.
Huawei understands tips on how to make a handsome smartwatch.
The strap with our evaluate mannequin is fabricated from pliant silicone, and is splendidly wearable. It by no means obtained sweaty or itchy beneath, or annoyingly caught hair. It did are likely to get caught on clothes although. An alternate leather-based model with a silicone underside can be accessible, matched to a chrome steel physique. This strap might be nice for on a regular basis put on, and the silicone underside resists sweat properly. There are quick-release bars to make altering the strap easy.
There are two buttons on the facet of the physique, slightly than a single crown, which is an uncommon type alternative. It appears to be like wonderful, however does take somewhat getting used to. A bonus is that they don’t generally tend to dig into the highest of your wrist. There isn’t a finesse to the buttons, they really feel like another fundamental button when pressed, and that is consultant of the Watch GT general: Purposeful and easy, however not overly premium.
The Watch GT is comfy, comparatively trendy, and a superb dimension. It’s simply not very particular. We wore it every day, however by no means appeared ahead to placing it on, or that eager to indicate it off by pushing our sleeve up. We undoubtedly desire it to sporting a health band, which no-one needs to show-off, however there are an amazing many higher wanting hybrid smartwatches on the market which might be significantly extra luxurious and fascinating.
The Watch GT doesn’t use Google’s Put on OS, and as an alternative makes use of Huawei’s personal working system referred to as Lite OS, which appears to be like a bit like Put on OS and Samsung’s Tizen, however not fairly as fairly, and it’s unable to run apps. We used the Watch GT primarily related to an iPhone XS Max, but in addition examined it with the Honor Magic 2. The expertise was principally similar.
It operates in the identical means as Put on OS — you swipe the display screen so much. Swipe up for notifications, swipe down for a fast entry panel, swipe proper or left to see knowledge panels with info on the climate, coronary heart charge, and health. It has a raise-to-view function which works properly following an replace, however annoyingly a faucet of the display screen doesn’t wake it up, and also you’re compelled to press a button as an alternative. It’s not very intuitive. The buttons aren’t configurable. The highest button opens the menu, whereas the decrease button provides fast entry to the health middle. This protects you about two steps as an alternative of utilizing the highest button, and is a little bit of a waste.
There are 12 watch faces to select from, however none are very inspiring, with a minimum of half being unattractively crammed with knowledge and numbers. Those who seem like watch faces look very digital, like they’re from Put on OS circa two years in the past. The excessive decision display screen makes them look good although. Problems are all fastened, and might present step rely, battery proportion, coronary heart charge, and even climate info. It delivers notifications out of your telephone, however not very successfully. They seem in an extended scrolling checklist accessed by swiping up from the underside of the display screen, however you can’t reply to any. The format shouldn’t be constant both. Instagram notifications say they’re from Instagram, but Twitter notifications don’t say the supply, and at occasions some will simply say “Message,” earlier than the content material. Sure, you get the main points, but it surely’s not very polished or useful.
After we examined a pre-release mannequin the software program on the Watch GT was disappointing, however updates have improved its responsiveness and visible smoothness. Nevertheless it’s nonetheless not good, and is slower than we’d like, lacks customization, and doesn’t have third-party app assist. We additionally had a state of affairs the place the battery was fully drained in a single day, presumably because of an app or course of downside. Huawei hasn’t given up on Put on OS, however up to now Lite OS shouldn’t be a compelling different like Samsung’s Tizen or Apple’s WatchOS.
Regardless of the traditional watch-type appears to be like, the Watch GT is made for health monitoring. It has onboard GPS, a coronary heart charge sensor, swim-proof water resistance, and connects to Huawei’s personal Well being app, which is offered for each Android and iOS. The expertise is complete with out being overwhelming, and for the informal health fan it’s greater than sufficient. There might not be sufficient depth for the intense athlete.
If music is within the background to all of your exercises, then the Watch GT received’t be for you.
There are monitoring modes for operating, biking, swimming, climbing, and an “Different” part for basic exercises. Activate these and the watch takes your coronary heart charge, counts energy, and time elapsed. All this knowledge is synced to the Huawei Well being app in your telephone. We tracked a number of exercises utilizing each the Watch GT and the Apple Watch Collection Four and located the guts charge measurements have been principally constant, and in addition matched that of the stationary bike on the gymnasium, as did the calorie burn.
We just like the restoration timer to ensure you’re getting the correct amount of relaxation, plus a coaching load measure to point how arduous you’re working. Runners additionally get a VO2 Max readout to indicate exercise depth. This mode is simply accessed when utilizing GPS outdoor, so not everybody will discover this of use. The knowledge is clearly displayed on the display screen when monitoring a exercise, and offered you discover knowledge and assembly a fundamental set goal — step rely, for instance — motivating, then you definitely’ll be happy with the Watch GT. Nevertheless, in order for you extra in-depth knowledge it’s a must to have a look at the Huawei Well being app, which presents long-term knowledge on-screen.
The app’s additional options are additionally geared in direction of runners, with the prospect to create run-based coaching plans. The Huawei Well being app and Watch GT will monitor sleep too, full with coronary heart charge knowledge, and a really complete breakdown of sleep phases. The Watch GT genuinely has all of the health bases coated, and delivers the suitable knowledge in a transparent means too.
Nevertheless the issue with the principle health monitoring stays — it doesn’t present a lot in the way in which of motivational suggestions, or objectives to satisfy. Apple does this fantastically by pushing you to, “shut the rings,” however exterior of a reminder to face up once in a while, and a suspect ring-based watch face, the Watch GT leaves you to get your self motivated.
We’re happy with the Watch GT’s health monitoring means, however there’s a huge function oversight that’s complicated, and makes us marvel who the watch is for: It doesn’t have any inner storage, and can’t stream music to Bluetooth headphones. Contemplating it has standalone GPS, so is due to this fact designed for use with out your telephone, and the health options are aimed toward runners, it is a weird choice. It doesn’t even have on-screen controls for music taking part in in your telephone. If music is within the background to all of your exercises, then the Watch GT received’t be for you.
Battery and different options
If the Watch GT has been a combined bag up to now, now we’re attending to one of the best half. The Huawei Watch GT has very good battery life, and it’s the rationale Huawei ditched Put on OS and developed its personal software program. Mission most undoubtedly achieved.
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Traits
The battery is designed to final two weeks with the guts charge monitor lively for about 90 minutes every week. For the extra hardcore, the Watch GT’s battery will give 22 hours use with the display screen lively, GPS operating, the guts charge monitor flashing, and a health program going too. Flip the whole lot off other than the display screen and incoming alerts, and it’ll go for 30 days.
The Huawei Watch GT has very good battery life.
We’d say the two-week estimate is that if something, barely conservative. In our time, the battery would cut back by 5 or six-percent day by day with a exercise, and even after 14 days it nonetheless had round 15-percent left. Clearly it will fluctuate together with your use, however the estimates are actual, and extra battery life in a smartwatch could be very fascinating. The charging plate makes use of magnets and two pins to clamp on the again of the watch, and is fortunately far more safe than the one for the Huawei Watch 2, but it surely’s nonetheless a boring piece of round plastic, and a full recharge can take a few hours.
The Watch GT doesn’t have Wi-Fi, or NFC for any sort of cell cost system, or the power to combine passes to be used with public transport.
Worth, availability, and guarantee
The Huawei Watch GT shouldn’t be in the stores within the U.S., however will be bought within the U.Ok.. The black model with the silicone strap seen right here prices 180 British kilos, or about $230, whereas the chrome steel mannequin with one of many leather-based straps prices 210 kilos, or about $265. It’s accessible via numerous shops together with John Lewis, Argos, and Amazon. Huawei gives a two-year guarantee towards defects and faults, with six months on the battery. It’s a return and restore system, and doesn’t cowl wear-and-tear, or abused merchandise.
Huawei so almost will get the Watch GT precisely proper. The battery life is correct within the candy spot, the design is strong, and the health monitoring will enchantment to most informal gym-goers. However we’re upset there’s no music options in any respect, and the software program nonetheless wants refinement to make it a real smartwatch competitor.
Is there a greater different?
There are various higher alternate options, but it surely will depend on how a lot you need to spend as to which one we’d suggest you purchase. When you’re within the U.S., the Watch GT’s strongest challenger on the value is the Mobvoi TicWatch C2. At $200 it has the identical sort of design, GPS, and a coronary heart charge sensor, plus all the advantages of Put on OS. It’s lacking the fascinating lengthy battery life although. The truth is, the Huawei Watch GT stands nearly alone in mixing a watch-like design with easy touchscreen smartwatch options, and genuinely nice battery life.
Comfortable to spend extra? The Apple Watch Collection Four is one of the best smartwatch accessible, but it surely’ll price you twice as a lot. Nevertheless, it does twice as a lot because the Watch GT, together with simply pretty much as good health monitoring, standalone GPS, and music playback. When you use an Android telephone, the $330 Samsung Galaxy Watch is our choose. It has an analogous design to the Watch GT, and most of the advantages of the Apple Watch.
Different smartwatches to analyze embody the $250 Mistfit Vapor 2, which prices across the similar because the Watch GT, however suffers — like so lots of its alternate options — from poor battery life. If lengthy battery life is a must have, then how a few hybrid watch just like the $180 Nokia Metal HR, or perhaps a fundamental health monitoring watch just like the $120 Casio G Shock GBA-800? Extra critical athletes could need to look at the $500 Polar Vantage V, or the $300 Coros Tempo. If the health facet appeals most, then any respectable health band will ship the monitoring items for a decrease price, however with further ugliness.
How lengthy will it final?
The Huawei Watch GT has swim-proof water resistance, but it surely’s not a super-tough rugged watch, so you should still need to watch out with it in some conditions. It has not sustained any visible harm from day-to-day use in our time with it although. Lite OS may doubtlessly enhance with software program updates, and a few have come via since we started our evaluate, however long-term standing of updates is unknown. The identical applies to the Huawei Well being app on your telephone.
It’s the battery inside that can have an effect on possession of the watch, because it has a finite lifetime. Whereas standby time could deteriorate, it received’t occur for years, and we’d think about you’ll become bored with the watch itself earlier than it’s previous its finest.
Do you have to purchase it?
Sure, however hold your expectations in examine. This isn’t an Apple Watch substitute, neither is it a easy health monitoring wearable. It’s someplace in-between, catering extra to somebody who needs type over substance. Offered music doesn’t play an element in your exercise regime, the lengthy battery life and powerful design makes the Watch GT a superb buy.