Huawei is enriching its range of GT2 smart health connected watches with a newcomer, a little less urban, which wants, on the other hand, to be more sporty: the GT2e. On closer inspection, the differences between the two generations are actually quite minimal. First, there is no 42 mm version on the GT2e, the watch is only offered in 46 mm, the largest model but which will also, necessarily, be the most enduring. The GT2e also bypasses the speaker and microphone that fitted the previous version while its new silicone bracelets adopt a more “sporty” perforated design that lets the skin breathe better. Finally, a function to measure oxygen levels in the blood (SpO2), a new performance indicator, is emerging.Read our Huawei Watch GT2e Review to discover more.
Cheaper, (almost) always as well equipped
The emphasis is therefore placed on sports activities and to better compete with players like Fitbit, with its Charge and other Versa, the price has been lowered. It will cost you only 159 euros to acquire the Watch GT2e while the GT2 could cost up to 90 euros more expensive depending on the version.
For this price, Huawei has made almost no sacrifice in terms of equipment (with the exception of the speaker and microphone, therefore). Amoled technology, the large screen of 1.39 inches, provides good visual comfort, including outdoors, as long as the brightness is adjusted to the maximum. Waterproof (5 ATM, 50 meters), the GT2e has a heart rate monitoring, a GPS chip and a whole host of sensors: accelerometer, gyroscope, compass, pressure and ambient light sensors, up to an altimeter. Difficult to find more complete.
Silicone strap, large screen… comfort above all
Despite this riot of components to which are added a solid 455 mAh battery and the Kirin A1 processor (a fairly recent house chip that supports the Bluetooth 5.1 standard and offers better management of autonomy, but we will come back to this ), this Huawei Watch remains light (62 g, bracelet included) and very pleasant to wear. Certainly, on a small wrist, it can seem quite imposing with its 46 mm format (what a shame not to offer as on the GT2 a smaller format), but it knows how to be forgotten thanks to its comfortable silicone strap and its case made of aluminum, soft to the touch and without roughness – there are just two discreet rectangular buttons on the side.
Visually, the watch is successful with a case that remains relatively thin and elegant and a dial entirely covered with glass. The red perforated strap that equips our Review watch adopts a style that will not necessarily be unifying. For those who would prefer something more discreet, it is fortunately available in a fairly light green. White or black bracelets (not perforated) are also in the game.
Like any self-respecting smart health connected watch, the GT2e offers personalization or notification functions, but its real credo is the monitoring of sports activities. Several dozen sports are thus offered, some as exotic as belly dancing, the hoop, surfing or… prisoner ball! Impossible not to find happiness, but it is not sure that anyone wants to go that far! The fundamentals are fortunately present, swimming and cycling included, with the automatic triggering of tracking for walking, indoor or outdoor running (GPS included in the latter case), rower and elliptical trainer as soon as you start to get agitated . The only regret is that you often have to wait a long time (several minutes or the equivalent of a good km traveled) for automatic tracking to start. We are often tempted to force the start … for fear of being deprived of results at the end of the session.
All the tools for post-containment fitness
When everything is going well, the watch gives you a lot of information directly through several screens (see above) – you can go from one to the other with a simple swipe of your finger. Heart rate, number of steps taken, calories expended, distance traveled…. All this information will be found in the Huawei Health application, with many details and additional analyzes, as well as weekly and monthly monitoring.
The watch also allows you to control the quality of your sleep, constantly monitoring your stress level (with key breathing exercises, if necessary) and during sports activities to obtain two performance indicators: the VO2Max (flow rate d ‘oxygen max) and, new to this watch is SpO², pulsed oxygen saturation, commonly known as the oxygen level in the blood.
Using GPS, you can even track your health journey on a graph. The complete panoply for post-containment fitness, whether you want to frolic outdoors or be content with indoor sheathing exercises.
Smart health connected functions: the limits of Lite OS
Despite its watch-like appearance, this Watch is more of the smart health connected bracelet essentially dedicated to activity monitoring, like a Fitbit Versa 2. The latter manages to offer more possibilities, in particular thanks to its store of applications. Because Huawei’s Lite OS system, designed for the brand’s smart health connected objects, is still very young. If it offers a pleasant and fast navigation in the menus as well as an interface with a rather successful design, we can criticize its limitations. No stores are currently integrated to add applications. To personalize their watch, the user will have to be satisfied with the numerous dials offered from the health application, not always in the best taste.
You can download several to change them regularly from the watch. Fortunately Huawei offers standard access to a compass, a barometer, a stopwatch, the weather, a timer, an alarm … and even a flashlight! More annoying, it is currently impossible to respond to SMS type notifications, including through pre-recorded quick messages of type “yes”, “no”, “maybe”, “Thank you” or even “I am unavailable, I will get back to you later ”. Too bad.
Shock autonomy, but also constraints
It was the economic war between Huawei and the United States that comforted the Chinese manufacturer in the choice to develop its own OS, rather than offering operation under Android Wear. With Lite OS, light and perfectly optimized, the endurance of this Watch is quite incredible. As long as you do not push the screen brightness fully and do not activate the screen saver which displays the time constantly – a kind of Always On mode – the watch can do without any charge for at least a good dozen days. And this, even if you practice an outdoor activity very regularly, under GPS, and receive some daily notifications. Otherwise, you will surely fall below the week of use … which is simply excellent.
A closed ecosystem, focused on Huawei products
But all is not rosy under Lite OS. The Music section allows you to transfer your favorite songs to the 2 GB of space available on this watch (and yes, you cannot install Spotify or Deezer!). However, do not expect to listen to them from your latest generation Bose headphones or from the recent true wireless Jabra dedicated to sport. You must imperatively invest in Huawei Freebuds, the only compatible headphones … The brand seems to want to close in on its ecosystem, which will not be to the taste of all users.
Besides, if installing the Watch from the Health app on a Huawei smartphone turns out to be child’s play, things will get tough if you are equipped with a competitor’s Android smartphone. You will have to install, through its APK, the App gallery store to download the latest version of Huawei Mobile Services (HMS). Because to connect the Watch GT2e to a competing Android mobile, you must indicate / create a Huawei identifier (HMS is essential for this). With a few bugs (which Huawei is trying to solve in its Help section), almost all of the Watch’s functions will then be available. This is unfortunately not the case for iOS users, deprived of certain options … but we imagine that they will prefer anyway to invest in an Apple Watch.
Huawei Watch GT2e Vs GT2