Trading access to third-party apps for longer battery. Worth?
Huawei watches were the main reason for the huge success of Android Wear and it came to a quite surprise when Huawei decided to go seperate ways with their smartwatch OS. However with the latest issues Huawei has with Google and the US government it makes sense that the company invested heavily into their own OS – Lite OS. The change in OS promises a above-average smartwatch with 2 weeks of battery for just $199, however this comes with a huge downside – losing access to tons of third-party apps.
There two different styles for the watch and Huawei has named them “The Sport” and “Classic”. However it is harder to find the “Classic” version, especially as most vendors do not speficy the style. The easiest way to recognize them is that “Classic” has a silver body, while “The Sport” rocks a black body. The price for the “The Sport” version is $199, while the Classic sells for $229.
The Huawei Watch GT is a nice looking, thin and light watch with full color 1.39 AMOLED Display with 454×454 resolution, which is an impressive resolution when it comes to smartwatches. Overall, this is probably one of the best displays on Android smartwatches on the market, compared only to the Apple Watches and there the price increase is enormous. The watch is comfortable to wear and the design is fashionable and looks way more premium than it’s pricetag would suggest. The thickness of the watch is just 10.6, which is also very impressive. Overall, Huawei has done very solid job with the design of the watch and it definitely feels very nice to wear.
On the right side you will find two buttons that can be used for different purposes. The top one is by default used to bring the menu or wake the watch, while the lower button is for you – you can set a shortcut to an app or funtion so you get faster access to a desired function – for example start a running workout.
The Huawei Watch GT is made of a combination of metal and ceramic and it feels premium.As specified above you have two different styles : black body with black silicone strap or silver body with brown leather strap.
There is not much information avaible about what is exactly the processor that powers the watch under the hood. Previous watches from the company has used Qualcomm, but it looks like now the company is using a proprietary chips. The watch feels fast and smooth, reacts fast to a touch.
Particularly impressing was the speed with which the watch connects to a GPS network – it is matter of just couple seconds it allows you to click start, and start running.
The moment things start going a bit rough is when it comes to software. Thanks to the fact the software used is Lite OS – this is not Wear OS or Tizen. This means that there is no support for any third-party apps and Huawei has made no indications about including them in the future.
However you still get a lot of fitness tech and trackers, reasonable amount of customized watchfaces and notifications support from your phone, which is a lot of the expected behavior and functionality of a smartwatch. One of the features that might be missed however is the lack of NFC support – the watch simply does not support that option and doesn’t have the hardware to support it. The only other apps you have access to are : compass, stopwatch, timer, alarm, flashlight, where is my phone and couple more.
Most of the settings are controled through a mobile application, after pairing the watch with your phone. There is no support for replying to notifications from your watch and this is another case, where you will have to pick your phone.
The main software application on the watch is called Workouts and is focused completely on fitness tracking. You can track all kinda workouts, including swimming as the watch is 5ATM waterproof. Additionally it comes with a fast and accurate GPS onboard. The stats are easily shown and seen on the screen or on the mobile application and the tracking seemed reasonably accurate.
Another place where the Huawei Watch GT shines. According to Huawei the watch should be able to last almost a full month with a single charge and this seems in line with our testings. Of course this depends on how heavy you use the watch. For heavy-to-mixed usage Huawei estimates two weeks, while it will last like two days with built-in GPS turned on constantly.
It is definitely a great smart watch that we definitely recommend. It fits most of the criteria for a casual usage, looks good, you don’t have to charge it often and will attract compliments from people around you. It is also reasonably cheap for the features it comes with. Overall solid purchase, as long as you don’t need any specific for Android applications.