Huawei Fit Review: Smartwatch Looks, Fitness Band Features

by Reads (3,466)
  • Editor's Rating

    Ratings Breakdown (1-10)

      • Design
      • 8
      • Features
      • 5
      • Performance
      • 8
      • Durability
      • 8
      • Utility
      • 8
      • Total Score:
      • 7.40
      • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10
  • Pros

    • Looks great, comfortable to wear
    • Waterproof, built for swimming
    • Utilitarian display easy to see outdoors
    • Great Training Plans feature
  • Cons

    • Huawei Wear app bare bones
    • Could use more exercise tracking options

Quick Take

The simple Huawei Fit is a worthy addition to the myriad of fitness trackers on the market. Give it a close look for its practical combination of aesthetics and features, combined with its relatively low price.


It looks like a smartwatch, but acts like a fitness tracker. The Huawei Fit doesn’t cost too much, but it doesn’t do too much beyond its core focus. It earns its name by logging steps, tracking sleep, and monitoring activity, with a neat and unique training feature.

Huawei Fit review unitIt’s light, waterproof, and partially thanks to a monochrome LCD display, lasts for days between charges.

At $130, the Huawei Fit is cheaper than the FitBit Charge 2, its closest competitor in terms of features, and is more aesthetically pleasing too.

Is it any good? The Huawei Watch also looked great, but was stymied by a high price and limited Android Wear software. Also, the last Huawei fitness tracker we reviewed, the TalkBand 2, was overpriced and gimmicky.

Has Huawei figured it out this time? Read this Huawei Fit review to find out.

Build & Design

It looks like a watch! The Huawei Fit sports a round and aluminum watch face that measures 1.55 x .44 inches, weighing about 1.2 ounces. Our Huawei Fit review unit felt great on the wrist, mainly because it’s so light. It’s easy to forget you’re wearing it.

It ships with TPU bands, with either a 20mm (.79 inches) or 18mm (.7 inches) width. The bands are available in black, blue, and orange, and secure with the standard watch band buckle. They’re secure. Should you want something more fancy, they’re also industry standard and easily removed. You can replace them with any other watch band from just about any other vendor.

Huawei Fit heart rate monitorThe Huawei Fit has no buttons or dials. Underneath, it sports the heart rate sensor and magnetic charging receptacle.

It’s waterproof, with IP68 and 5 ATM ratings. Technically, that means it can survive submerged in up to 50 meters of still water. In real world usage, that means you can take it swimming in the pool, and leave it on for a shower or while washing hands. But Huawei warns against wearing it while scuba diving or diving in the pool.

We wore our Huawei Fit review unit swimming in the pool, and in the shower, steam room, sauna, and hot tub with no ill effects.

It ships with a round charging station and micro USB-to-full cable. The Fit easily docks and remains secure for charging. The station also has a small reset button underneath, for resetting the Huawei Fit.  

Display

The Huawei Fit has a monochrome LCD display measuring 1.04 inches, with a 208 x 208 pixel resolution. It supports touch, has an optional backlight, and is coated with Gorilla Glass 3 for scratch protection.

Made famous by the original Nintendo Game Boy, monochrome LCD is an underrated display technology. Its contrast renders backlighting unnecessary in standard conditions, meaning it consumes less power. The Huawei Fit actually has a backlight for dark conditions, thankfully, which you can toggle on or off, or set for auto (triggered by movement and an ambient light sensor). We had no trouble viewing our Huawei Fit review unit’s display, indoors or outdoors, even in sunny conditions that would make other wearables tough to see.

Huawei Fit backlit display

Huawei Fit backlit display

We don’t know why more wearables don’t go this route. It’s easier to see outdoors and it consumes less power. We’ll gladly trade an attractive color display for that.

Navigation is touch-based, and the Huawei Fit is as responsive as any other touchscreen-enabled wearable we’ve reviewed. Sweaty digits or wet watch face make things difficult, and Huawei has a few tricks to mitigate frustration. For example, you can navigate through the Fit’s display options with a wrist flick, and knuckle knocking on the display twice both starts and stops swim sessions.

The wrist flick is a nice touch, but it’s a tad sensitive. Our Huawei Fit review unit would often toggle through options just from regular movements. This proves annoying when all you want to do is glance the time.

Performance

The Huawei Fit tracks steps and sleep, and measures heart rate. Workouts include running, cycling, treadmill running, and swimming. It has activity alerts, reminding you to get up and move after a set time, and alarm settings (set through the app). You can also set alerts for heart rate limit warnings.

Other and more expensive fitness trackers can measure more, including yoga, pilates, step climbers, rowing, and other popular cardio exercises. However swimming is unique to the Huawei Fit and more expensive alternatives. As of this writing, it’s not yet supported by the Huawei Wear fitness app, though should soon arrive in a future update.

Its training plan is another unique feature. You can load up a cardio training plan on the Huawei Fit (5k, 10k, half marathon, full marathon), which guides you to the goal, ramping up distances along the way. It can be tweaked by date, getting you ready for a specific event. It’s useful, and other fitness trackers should implement the same.

After a run or workout, the Fit shows the basics (distance, rate, time, VO2 max, calories, etc), along with a suggested rest time. Unfortunately, this information does display for long, and th Huawei Fit doesn’t display historical exercise data. So you can’t see a week’s worth of running on the watch. That’s all logged in the companion app.

Our Huawei Fit review unit accurately tracked steps and heart rate, at least compared against professional gym equipment. Sleep tracking also seemed on point, give or take a few minutes.

So it’s basic, and it works well. There’s no on-board GPS or storage for music. It doesn’t track stair flights climbed. There’s no Wi-Fi. Huawei claims the Huawei Fit can automatically identify walking and running, though our Huawei Fit review unit failed to do so accurately. To be fair, every fitness tracker we’ve tested with this feature also failed. You’re always better off manually starting an exercise.

It connects to an Android or iOS smartphone via Bluetooth 4.2. It can display smartphone alerts, anything that appears in the notification bar, and the Huawei Fit can be used to reject phone calls.

Battery

Huawei claims the 80mAh battery powers the Huawei Fit for up to 6 days, with periodic heart rate checks.

We managed to secure 3 days with heart rate set to “auto measure,” the backlight set to “auto,” and periodically connecting to an Android smartphone to upload data. In that time, we exercised twice, totaling approximately 1 hour.

It’s a good result, considering the competition. The Fitbit Charge HR and Charge 2 can go a day or two longer between charges, but lack the watch-like display. Smartwatches, with color displays, typically only last a day.  The Huawei Fit also charges fast, taking less than two hours to go from empty to full.

We’ll gladly trade a color display for increased battery life — whether it’s eInk or monochrome LCD — at least until we see some significant battery tech advances. After all, battery life is a wearable killer. Even AMOLED-totting smartwatches and fitness trackers, like the Samsung Gear Fit 2, last a day or two max with regular use.

App

The Huawei Fit pairs with the Huawei Wear app, which available for Android and iOS. It’s a standard fitness tracking app with daily info and historical fitness data, complete with charts. You can also use it to load training plans onto the Huawei Fit.

Huawei Wear app Huawei Wear app Huawei Wear app

Even though it has a clean interface and is easy to navigate, it’s not very good. It’s too bare bones. Social sharing features are missing, making it an isolated experience.

It can share data with Google Fit, Apple HealthKit, MyFitnessPal, and UP by Jawbone, which goes halfway to replacing the missing features, but it’s still not enough. Huawei Wear is the biggest drag on the Huawei Fit.

Huawei Wear app Huawei Wear app Huawei Wear app

Huawei Fit Review Conclusion

The Huawei Fit is a solid wearable. It’s basic in form and function, and that’s a strength because it still looks good and performs well. The display is low-tech compared to AMOLED-toting smartwatches, but it’s more utilitarian and works better. It’s also waterproof and has decent battery life, so you can wear it just about anywhere for days at a time.

Huawei FitIt’s a shame then the Huawei Wear app is so bare bones, especially when Fitbit and Samsung have much more robust offerings. The social features are sorely missed. Even if you don’t like sharing your daily exercise results, seeing where your activity ranks with other users is both motivating and useful.

At $130, it’s $20 cheaper than the Fitbit Charge 2. The Fitbit has on-board GPS, a better app, and can track additional exercises, like yoga and elliptical. It’s not waterproof like the Huawei Fit, so it can’t track swimming. It’s also a fitness band, which might turn off some. The Huawei Fit is a more attractive piece of hardware from where we’re sitting.

Bottom line buying advice: The simple Huawei Fit is a worthy addition to the myriad of fitness trackers on the market. Give it a close look for its practical combination of aesthetics and features, combined with its relatively low price.

Pros:

  • Looks great, comfortable to wear
  • Waterproof, built for swimming
  • Utilitarian display easy to see outdoors
  • Great Training Plans feature

Cons:

  • Huawei Wear app bare bones
  • Could use more exercise tracking options


LEAVE A COMMENT

0 Comments

|
All content posted on TechnologyGuide is granted to TechnologyGuide with electronic publishing rights in perpetuity, as all content posted on this site becomes a part of the community.