Product Huawei Watch
Specifications 42mm diameter, 11.3mm thick, 61g-131g (depending on strap), 1.4in circular AMOLED display, 400x400 resolution, 286ppi, Bluetooth 4.1 and WiFi connectivity, Android Wear OS, 1.2GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 chip, 512MB RAM, 4GB ROM, 300mAh battery, leather or stainless steel straps
Price From £289 (as tested)
FASHION HAS BECOME FASHIONABLE when it comes to smartwatches. Sleek, glossy timepieces like the Apple Watch and the new Motorola Moto 360 aim to be stylish accessories as much as useful gadgets, and it seems that the Android Wear-powered Huawei Watch is no different.
Yes, Huawei's first foray into wearables is very much a looker, but how does it fare as an actual smart device? We slipped it on for a few days to find out.
Android Wear smartwatches will interface with Android and iOS smartphones, and we set it up with an Android 5.0 handset. After downloading the Android Wear app, we activated Bluetooth so that the two devices could find each other, which they did in seconds. From there, it's a simple process of verifying the connection by reading a code on the smartphone's screen, and picking that code out of a short list displayed on the watch.
It's simple and idiot-proof overall, and our only gripe is that it took nearly 15 minutes for the two devices to fully sync, during which time the Huawei Watch is completely unusable. This is a particularly bizarre waiting time as they were right next to each other throughout without anything to interfere with the connection.
The Huawei Watch isn't the most compact smartwatch around - it's slightly chunkier than the largest Apple Watch variant at 42mm wide and 11.3mm thick - but it is certainly one of the best looking. The stainless steel case is durable and elegantly simple, and there are no weird touches like the Moto 360's ugly black bar across the bottom of its screen. Less is definitely more where the Huawei Watch's styling is concerned, and it's versatile enough to work with casual and formal garb.
It's practical, too. IP67 water- and dust-proofing meant we could happily run the Huawei Watch under a tap without any ill effects, although you probably shouldn't take it for a swim. When equipped with the standard leather strap, as our review unit was, it weighs a comfortable 61g, which isn't quite on par with the Apple Watch or the upcoming Samsung Gear S2 but is still light enough that we frequently forgot we were wearing it.
Sadly, there are some limitations. The Huawei Watch isn't NFC-ready, which means it won't be usable with Android Pay once that launches in the UK. Also, the watch's 'crown' is really just a regular button, capable of returning to the home screen with a press or the apps menu with a hold but little else. This feels like a missed opportunity when compared with, say, the Apple Watch's Digital Crown, which can be used to navigate the OS in place of touch controls.
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