A couple of my mates wanted me to let them know what I thought of the Huawei Watch (hereafter, ‘H’) after upgrading from the Moto 360 (hereafter, 360) and spending some time getting to know the ‘H’. So here’s my thoughts.
TL;DR Better than the 360 in every way that counts
I should probably preface this review by saying that I loved (and still love) the 360. I was excited to buy it, I was excited to see it ship to my house, I was pissed that I wasn’t at my house when it arrived (long-term gig in LA), I was proud to wear it, and I loved showing it to anyone who cared (and probably more than a few who didn’t). Having said that, the 360 I had was a Gen 1 in every sense. It was the first watch Moto had made. It was the first smartwatch Moto had made. It was the flagship Android Wear device. And the minute I got my hands on a 2nd gen device, those things were readily apparent.
Don’t get me wrong. It’s not all sunshine and roses w/ the ‘H’. For example, charging is actually quite a bit of a sorrier state than with the 360. You see, the 360 has a standard Qi charging mechanism. So while there is a cute little official charging stand, you can make do with any Qi charger you have once you figure out where to place the watch on the coil. And the official charger uses a standard, I-have-tons-of-them-all-of-the-place USB-A to USB-micro cable. The ‘H’, on the other hand, uses pogo pins to connect to it’s charger. Which means you have to use a compatible charger (of which there is only one currently). Take a road trip and forget your charger? Buy another one or go without your watch. And to add to the insult, the charger cable, while having a standard USB-A plug on one end, is terminated inside the charging puck. So if the cord should go bad or isn’t long enough, too bad. You can’t use one of those USB cables from the pile in your desk drawer. Nope. Sorry. And then, of course, there’s the act of charging the watch. With the 360, you simply slide it into its dock, and you’re done. Heck, after a while, you can almost lightly toss it into the charger like a game of corn hole and it will charge. Half asleep? Drunk? No problem. Tis easy. The ‘H’ on the other hand? You have to line up the pogos exactly or you aren’t getting any juice. And I mean exact. Doesn’t matter if the watch and the charger look perfectly aligned and centered with each other. If the pins aren’t perfect, no juice for you! I’ve already had my share of waking up to find out the watch didn’t charge. It SUCKS.
Pro tip: I’ve found that hovering the ‘H’ right over the charging puck allows the magnets in them to pull them together in such a way that the puck “leaps” up and attaches to the watch with the pogo pins perfectly positioned
So yeah, charging. The one thorn in the rose. But worth it, imho.