Huawei Watch 3 review: HarmonyOS 2 is just one of the reasons why this is Huawei’s best ‘smartwatch’

I had been wanting to try this smartwatch since Huawei officially unveiled it, earlier this month of June. And it is that it brings together enough news to catch the attention of even the most skeptical fans of new releases. Probably its most striking features are the integration of HarmonyOS 2.0, and also the presence of 4G connectivity through a virtual SIM card (eSIM).

However, it also has other characteristics that clearly set it apart from its predecessors. It fully respects the vocation of a sports accessory that is so present in Huawei’s smart watches since its birth, but this Watch 3 arrives with a more ambitious sensor equipment, a new interface and the possibility of accessing AppGallery, the official store of Huawei applications, among other novelties.

Huawei Watch 3: technical specifications

SCREEN1.43 “AMOLED (466 x 466 dots), 326 dpi, 60 Hz, 1000 nits
PROCESSORHiSilicon Hi6262
CONNECTIVITY4G (eSIM)NFCBluetooth 5.2Wi-Fi 802.11n
SENSORSAccelerometer, gyroscope, heart rate, barometer, digital compass, SpO2 and thermometer
MEASUREMENT AND AUXILIARY FUNCTIONSHeart rate, stress, sleep, skin temperature sensor, automatic fall detection, emergency call and SpO2100 sports modes, 17 professional and 85 custom
WATERPROOFUp to 5 atmospheres
DRUMS450 mAhUp to 14 days (low power mode)Up to 3 days (with 4G connectivity)
DIMENSIONS46.2 x 46.2 x 12 mm
PRICE369 euros
Huawei Watch 3 Specifications

Its design is more stylish than ever, and its construction is as neat as ever

I can not fault the finish of this smartwatch  Its all-metal case is impeccably machined, and the glass that protects the AMOLED screen is robust and precisely embedded. Its construction is decidedly of the first division.

If we stick to its design, this smartwatch takes a different course than its predecessors. And it is appreciated not because the previous devices of this family do not have a careful aesthetic, which they do, but because it risks and manages to be even more stylized than the other Watch. An interesting note: as you can see in the following photograph, the bezel that surrounds the dial in other models has been removed from this Watch 3.

Huawei Watch 3
Huawei Watch 3

As in any other smartwatch, the component that we will use to act on its behavior more frequently is the touch screen, but, in addition, it incorporates a side button and a rotating crown with which we can act on some functions and adjust the volume, among other options. An interesting detail: when we use the crown, the watch offers us a haptic stimulus through the case.

The strap of the version that we have had the opportunity to test is made of silicone, so it can get wet without problem. In my opinion, this is the ideal strap for those who need to use this smartwatch to practice sports with it.

This smart watch incorporates an ingenious mechanism that helps it evacuate the water that can accumulate inside if we get it wet

Curiously, the four holes that you can see in the following image slightly below the crown and the side button are not only used to project the sound towards the outside of the box; they also allow to evacuate the water that can accumulate inside, as we will see later.

HarmonyOS 2 takes ideas from the competition

Huawei Watch 3 Specifications
Huawei Watch 3

The information that this smartwatch presents to us when we turn our wrist to trigger the screen to turn on and how it is presented to us varies significantly depending on the sphere we choose. The sample that we have tested incorporates 30 different spheres pre-installed, but it is possible to download more designs from the Huawei Watch Face Store by accessing it from the Health app that we will have previously installed on our mobile phone.

Does the interface that you can see in the following photo remind you of anything? There is no doubt that it looks a lot like the Apple Watch. In any case, it doesn’t matter where Huawei’s designers got their inspiration from; what is really relevant is that this design allows us to find the app we are looking for quickly. And if we turn the crown when we are looking at the apps, we will apply a zoom to the icons to get closer to or away from them, thus getting them to fit more or less on the screen.

The screen that appears when we slide our finger from the top of the panel to the bottom offers us a surprise: the ‘Drain’ function. You can see it in the upper right corner of the following photo. It serves to evacuate the water to the outside of the watch case, expelling it through the four holes in which we have repaired a few paragraphs above. It is definitely an ingenious solution.

Huawei Watch 3
Huawei Watch 3

As I mentioned in the first paragraphs of this article, this smart watch allows us to install a virtual SIM card that gives it 4G connectivity. If we have it, among other things, we can make calls directly from the smartwatch and without having to have our mobile phone with us. If we do not have it we can also do them, but in this case the watch will have to be linked to the smartphone through a Bluetooth link.

This smart watch offers us more biometric sensors than its predecessors

Manufacturers smartwatches still managing to integrate more sensors into their devices, and is an interesting strategy because many users appreciate having access to the information they collect, especially if we practice sport regularly. One of the novelties that the new Watch 3 incorporates in this area is a sensor designed to measure the surface temperature of our skin.

Huawei Watch 3
Huawei Watch 3

The sensor designed to measure atmospheric pressure is an old acquaintance that could not be missing from Huawei’s new smartwatch. This article is only a first contact with this device, but we are preparing a more in-depth analysis in which we will try to evaluate the precision with which the sensors of this smartwatch collect the measurements.

To measure the heart rate, this smart watch uses an LED diode and four photoreceptors that capture the light reflected by our body. According to Huawei, its engineers have developed a new version of its TruSeen algorithm to more accurately monitor our heart rate, something important for those users who are going to use it to exercise with a certain intensity.

Another interesting sensor in times of a pandemic that triggers respiratory conditions, among other possible health problems: the measurement of the oxygen level in the blood. This smart watch offers us the possibility of monitoring our blood oxygen levels throughout the day if we wish.

The VO2 max parameter reflects the maximum amount of oxygen that our body can absorb and consume in a specific period of time while we carry out a physical activity whose intensity increases over time. It is useful because it helps us to know our aerobic capacity. The higher this value, the greater our cardiovascular capacity will also be.

It is more stylized, but it is still a ‘smartwatch’ with a sports vocation

The tools that this smart watch puts at our disposal if we want to use it to practice sports are even more numerous than in the previous devices of the Huawei Watch family. Not only does it help us to plan our workouts with great precision; It also collects our performance in a multitude of tables and graphs that can be very useful to evaluate our progression. This information is available both on the smartwatch itself and through the Health app that we will have previously installed on our mobile phone.

Huawei Watch 3
Huawei Watch 3

The lower button attached to the right side of the watch case allows us to access a multitude of training programs: running on a treadmill, running outdoors, walking outdoors, using a stationary bike, swimming in a pool, swimming in open water, hiking, skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing, etc. This is the Huawei smartwatch that incorporates the widest range of training plans.

In this article of first impressions we cannot offer you precise measurements of its autonomy, but, of course, in the in-depth analysis that we are preparing you will have them. Huawei promises us that in a real use scenario and using 4G connectivity the battery lasts approximately 3 days, but by activating the ultra-long battery life mode the autonomy, always according to Huawei, extends up to 14 days.

However, there is something else. Those responsible for this brand in different European countries have confirmed to us that during the next few weeks they will launch several firmware updates for this smartwatch that will further extend its autonomy and refine other features of the watch. We trust that with a bit of luck the first one will arrive while we prepare the in-depth analysis of this smartwatch to be able to assess its impact.

More information | Huawei

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