Huawei Watch Fit 2 review: Slim smartwatch from chic to sporty
In Huawei's smartwatch portfolio, the Huawei Watch Fit 2 takes over the role of a compact and, if desired, elegant fitness watch. The smartwatch, which also passes for a large fitness tracker and with which Huawei primarily targets female customers, is available in three different model lines: Active Edition, Classic Edition and Elegant Edition. Only the materials, prices, and included wristbands differ, but not the technical features and functions.
We tested the mid-range model, i.e. the Classic Edition of the Huawei Watch Fit 2. In this case, the slim smartwatch comes with an interchangeable leather strap with a width of 20 mm. In our review, we put the sleek smartwatch through its paces and reveal what it has to offer and who it is suitable for.
Case and features - Slim and solidly equipped smartwatch
While the casing of the cheaper Active Edition is made of polymer, Huawei uses a combination of aluminum and plastic for the two more expensive variants. The side edges shine in silver, gold or black depending on the color choice. The choice of material affects the weight, which is 26 g (~0.92 oz) without the wristband in the Active Edition and 30 g (~1.1 oz) in the identical Classic and Elegant Editions.
There are also differences in the material of the wristbands. While the Active Edition is equipped with a sporty silicone strap in the colors Midnight Black, Sakura Pink or Isle Blue, the manufacturer includes a leather strap in Moon White or Nebula Gray with the Classic Edition we have. The even more expensive Elegant Edition, on the other hand, is equipped with a stainless steel Milanaise strap in Silver Frost or Premium Gold. The bracelets are suitable for wrist circumferences of approx. 130 or 140 to 210 mm (~5.0 to 8.3 in). If desired, bracelets with a width of 18 to 20 mm can be easily exchanged, which is even easier than with the predecessor model.
Regardless of the model, the Huawei Watch Fit 2 is waterproof up to 5 ATM and features a button on the right side of the device. It is used to open the menu and close apps. Besides the sensors and battery mentioned below, Huawei also installs a microphone and a solid-sounding speaker for the Bluetooth phone function in the watch.
Setup and operation - Easy setup, more options under Android
The Huawei Health app is required to set up the smartwatch. It is available for iOS and Android in addition to Huawei's own HarmonyOS. We demonstrate the setup on an iPhone in the screenshots below, which worked without problems in the test.
We also tested the initial setup at Android and did not encounter any problems. After that, basic settings can be made via the app. These include which health measurements are to be performed, notifications, weather, favorite contacts as well as device settings and firmware updates.
When the smartwatch is linked to a smartphone with Google's operating system, some additional features are available that iPhone users do not get. We mentioned this in the review and have already seen it in other smartwatches from Huawei, so the Huawei Watch Fit 2 is no exception.
The Watch Fit 2 is mainly controlled via the touch-sensitive screen. As already mentioned, there is also a menu control button on the right. The controls functioned smoothly for the most part, but the watch occasionally did not respond to inputs.
While apps and the like are opened via taps, the menu consisting of many small icons can be scrolled through via swipes. Swiping in the four different directions on the home screen opens additional features. For example, swiping to the left brings up screens for heart rate, blood oxygen saturation, weather, call list, moon cycle and activities. The displayed information can be customized in the settings. A swipe up calls up the notifications, a swipe down shortcut settings.
It is also interesting that the smartwatch has a 32 GB music storage. According to Huawei, this is enough for up to 500 songs. Playback can either be done via the built-in speakers or an audio device connected via Bluetooth, such as earphones. Other apps include a flashlight function, stopwatch and timer, alarm clock, smartphone tracking and camera control (which unfortunately does not work with an iPhone)
Telephony and notifications
As mentioned above, the Huawei Watch Fit 2 enables telephony via Bluetooth. It does not connect to the mobile network on its own, but depends on a connected smartphone within Bluetooth range. It then enables calls directly at the wrist, which worked satisfactorily in practice in terms of audibility on both sides.
The smartwatch also informs about incoming smartphone notifications. In the app, these can be turned on and off individually for different areas (under iOS it is Messages, WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Messenger, Gmail, Other). The first lines of emails, text messages, etc. can be read on the wrist. The transmission also worked smoothly with an iPhone in the test, and the read status was transmitted correctly. In combination with a Android smartphone, it is also possible to use predefined quick responses. Unfortunately, NFC is not available.
In principle, Huawei's own voice assistant Celia can be accessed via the smartwatch. However, this requires a smartphone from Huawei, which was unfortunately not available for the test. In general, Celia offers considerably fewer options than the unsupported but more widespread services Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and Apple Siri.
Health and fitness - smartwatch tracks pulse, SpO2, stress and sleep
Whether as Sport or Elegant Edition - the health and fitness features of the Huawei Watch Fit 2 are always the same. It tracks almost 100 sports and measures pulse and blood oxygen levels as well as sleep and stress levels. The data is synchronized with the Huawei Health app.
Like many other smartwatches, the Watch Fit 2 tracks the activities throughout the day. The achievement of predefined and partly customizable daily goals is displayed in the form of the familiar ring diagrams. There is one ring each for steps (blue), exercise (yellow) and hourly standing up while sedentary (red).
In addition to providing motivation for regular exercise, the smartwatch can also determine stress levels. The measurement can either be done at the push of a button via the app or permanently via the settings.
Heart rate, heart rhythm and blood oxygen saturation
The Huawei Watch Fit 2 is equipped with sensors for heart rate and blood oxygen saturation (SpO2). The values can be measured either on demand or regularly, but this has to be set via the app first. Then the usual diagrams are displayed, which show the course of the measured values over the day.
The heart rate sensor of the Huawei Watch Fit 2 is extremely accurate. Compared with a Polar H10 chest strap as a reference, the smartwatch measures the resting heart rate accurately. There is a deviation of just 0.3 percent in the performance pulse with high dynamics. The curves on the two screenshots below are quite parallel, which is a very good result for a smartwatch in this price range. The accuracy was tested while cycling.
The Huawei Watch Fit 2 offers the option of sleep analysis. The duration of the last night is displayed on the watch itself. More detailed information (duration, sleep phases, and assessment) can be viewed via the Huawei Health app.
The smartwatch can track sports activities with almost 100 different workout modes. Thus, the vast majority of sports should be covered. The most popular ones are initially listed in the menu. However, the list can be adapted to the user's preferences and supplemented with other available sports modes.
Different data is tracked depending on the sport. For running and walking as well as cycling, these include the distance and route, the duration, the calories burned, the pace per kilometer including average and maximum speed, steps and stride length (not for cycling, of course), the course of the heart rate as well as the distribution to the different heart rate zones and the subsequent recovery after finishing the workout. The screenshots below show the sport mode "Walking", first during a brisk walk and then the evaluation after finishing.
In addition, the watch offers seven workout modes with "Personal Trainer" on the display, running courses and training plans, as well as the "Running Ability Index" for evaluating one's running skills.
GNSS and navigation
The Huawei Watch Fit 2 supports the usual satellite standards like GPS for positioning and navigation. Establishing a connection took between 20 and 30 seconds on average in our test. The accuracy is sufficient compared with a Garmin Venu 2 as a reference model. Slight deviations in the routing as well as around 100 m (~328 ft) over a total distance of almost 6 km (~3.7 mi) are not perfect, but within acceptable limits. There is also a deviation of around 10 percent in the elevation profile.
Practical: Routes can be imported and exported in GPX, TCX and KML formats via the Huawei Health app. Unfortunately, there is no navigation function. But at least a compass is available.
Display - The AMOLED screen is larger than in the predecessor
Compared with the first Huawei Watch Fit, the display in the new model has grown by almost 20 percent. It now measures 1.74 inches diagonally and takes up a good 72 percent of the casing's upper side. An AMOLED panel is used, which has a maximum brightness of 550 cd/m² according to our measurements. It can still be read well in direct sunlight, but it naturally does not have the same brilliance as in the shade. The resolution of the Huawei Watch Fit 2's display is 336 x 480 pixels. This results in a high pixel density of 336 PPI, which ensures a detailed display without recognizable pixels.
Ten different watch faces with a wide variety of designs are preloaded on the watch ex-works. Other countless watchfaces can be installed on the wearable via the Huawei Health app.
Performance and runtime - Smooth operation and one week battery
Unfortunately, Huawei does not provide any information about the chip. However, how well the smartwatch "performs" in everyday use is much more important than the technical data. There is no reason for criticism here. The watch usually responds quickly to inputs via touchscreen and side button. Apps open without much delay, so smooth operation is possible.
HarmonyOS (version 2) is used as the operating system for the first time in the Watch Fit series. Unfortunately, we had some problems with the localization in terms of umlauts and the like.
The installed battery measures 292 mAh. Huawei specifies a battery runtime of about 10 days in typical use. We could not quite reproduce this value in our test, but it is of course always dependent on the intensity of use. However, the smartwatch lasts five to seven days even during intensive use according to our practical experience.
The short charging times are also practical. After only 15 minutes, the smartwatch is already charged to about 30 percent, after about half an hour it is 70 percent. This means that you can quickly recharge the battery if you forget to do so. The full charge takes about an hour. Charging is done with an included, but short (only about 60 cm), USB cable including a PogoPin, which is magnetically attached to the underside of the watch.
Verdict - Versatile smartwatch with a solid feature set
Thanks to its different editions, the Huawei Watch Fit 2 can range from chic to sporty - depending on your taste. Visually, it will probably primarily appeal to women, but it also looks good on men's wrists. The technical features are solid compared to the price range and offer everything you would expect (at least).
As is known, Huawei leaves ECG and blood pressure to the more expensive models - understandable. Unfortunately, some functions are not possible in combination with iOS.
If you are looking for a high-quality smartwatch with a decent feature set including a phone function and music storage, you will find a more than solid model in Huawei's Watch Fit 2, which can also be customized to your (visual) preferences thanks to the different editions.
If the Huawei Watch Fit 2 is not the right choice, the same manufacturer offers, for example, the Huawei Watch GT 3 with a round display starting at about 190 Euros (~$188, e.g. at Amazon). The Huawei Band 7 (approx. 50 Euros/~$49 at Amazon) fitness tracker is cheaper, but also has less features. In the same price range are, among others, the Xiaomi Watch S1 Active (from about 130 Euros/~$128 at Amazon) and/or Watch S1 (from about 170 Euros/~$168 at Amazon). Also, the already somewhat older, but better equipped Samsung Galaxy Watch4 (from about 160 Euros/~$158 at Amazon) is now in this price range.
Price and availability
With an MSRP of 149 Euros (~$147), the Sport Edition is a bit cheaper and can be ordered at this price from Huawei. On the other hand, it is currently already available for around 130 Euros (~$128, e.g. at Amazon). According to the RRP, the Elegant Edition is 229 Euros (~$226) and can be ordered for this price at Huawei and Amazon, among others.