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Huawei Watch GT 2e review: Stylish yet functional without breaking the bank

T3 logo T3 09/12/2020 Lee Bell
logo: Huawei Watch GT 2e review © Provided by T3 Huawei Watch GT 2e review

Huawei smartwatches are renowned for being well-made, robust and reliable, with the caveat that they don’t support third-party apps, such as Strava and the like. This means it can be a little frustrating for those looking to link up all their fitness endeavours or collate summaries of their workouts in something that’s not Huawei’s own Health app. 

Nevertheless, if that’s not a problem for you and you’re simply looking for a good quality fitness tracker and everyday smartwatch with slick aesthetics that doesn’t cost the earth, the Huawei Watch GT 2e will likely prove a great addition to your wrist. 

While software might be limited, the watch certainly makes up for this in terms of hardware, offering some great features such as a crisp and vibrant circular AMOLED display, stylish stainless steel body and impressive battery life.

 Huawei Watch GT 2e Review: Price

The Huawei Watch GT 2e is on sale now in the UK with an RRP of £159.99, and is available from a host of retailers such as Argos and Amazon, most of which you’re likely to find it significantly less than the suggested retail price. 

While its older sister, the Watch GT 2, comes in two dial sizes, the slightly cheaper Watch GT 2e comes in just one, at 46mm. As for straps, there’s your bog-standard Graphite Black or some groovy colour options, including Lava Red and Minty Green, which come with perforations similar to Nike’s straps for the Apple Watch. 

Huawei Watch GT 2e Review: Design

If you were a fan of this watch’s predecessor, the Watch GT 2, you’re going to love the Watch GT 2e. With an updated design that shifts away from the more professional look, the new and improved Gt 2e boasts a more stylish and modern aesthetic.

For starters, the strap is more integrated into the watch body, giving a sleek and minimal appearance. This also makes for a more comfortable fit thanks to the fluoro rubber straps sitting more snugly around the wrist, which also helps provide more accurate heart rate monitoring and data collection. If you’re looking to change the strap, this can be done super easily thanks to an in-built pin mechanism that lets you swap them out in seconds. 

Gallery: Best fitness trackers 2020: Top activity bands to buy today (Pocket-lint)

As for the display, you’ll find a slick 1.39-inch AMOLED touchscreen with a sharp 454 x 454 resolution at 326ppi. This is embedded under a smooth panel glass that extends to the rim of the watch face, and is smoothed off at the edges for a super seamless look. And it doesn’t only look good, it’s fast and responsive, too.

Brightness is also a strong point with the GT 2e. Even when using the watch outdoors under direct sunlight, we had no qualms reading the data on display. 

Huawei Watch GT 2e Review: Features And OS  

If you’re the type of person that loves to mix up their fitness regime with different types of workouts, then the GT 2e is definitely the smartwatch for you. With plenty of workout modes - from the traditional sports such as running and cycling to more unconventional activities like ballet, parkour, skateboarding and even belly dancing (yes, really) - there is literally nothing you can’t track. And accurately. Selecting these is very straightforward, too, which is one of the main things we like about this watch. 

Another advantage here is that if you cannot be bothered to scroll through the list of a hundred activities to find the exercise type you’re wanting to record, the Watch GT 2e can automatically detect it and start logging data. However, this only works for six popular activities, not the more obscure workouts. We seriously doubt it’s going to recognise you’re belly dancing without you telling it first.

If swimming is more your thing, the Gt 2e can track that, too, thanks to its water resistance rating of 5 ATM, which means it will survive being submerged underwater for up to 50 meters. Oh, and it also has built-in GPS tracking - something that we found to be exceptionally accurate. Surprising, really - for a smartwatch costing less than £200. 

So, what kind of data does the watch provide you with after a workout? Well, you’ll get a pretty detailed summary of your activity right on your wrist immediately after hitting the stop workout option, such as calories burned and the heart rate zones you hit and for how long. However, you’ll have to sync it up to your smartphone via Bluetooth to get a more comprehensive overview, where you can really dig into the data.

When it comes more everyday use, the Watch GT 2e delivers all the standard smartphone-extending features that you’d expect from a smartwatch, such as phone notification syncing, access to weather and news and basic health information like steps taken, calories burned, average heart rate, stress levels, that kind of thing. It’s all very easy to navigate and nicely displayed.

When it comes to general performance, this is also top notch. This is thanks to the Kirin A1 chip - Huawei’s own processor, which has been made especially for wearables. With 4GB instead of 2GB (the amount found on the original GT 2), everything is extra fast and responsive. The GT 2e also runs Huawei’s own operating system called LiteOS, which boasts a UI that’s intuitive but by no means dull.  

This light yet refined OS also means battery usage is kept to a minimum - another great feature on the GT 2e. In our experience, the watch’s 455mAh cell battery lasted for about a week. However, this was with all the bells and whistles activated, such as heart-rate monitoring, GPS tracking and music playback, all while using during daily workouts. We can imagine that the watch would last such longer if optimised for battery saving and used less frequently for activity tracking.

Huawei Watch GT 2e Review: Verdict  

The Huawei Watch GT 2e is an impressive wearable, especially for the price. Offering a sleek and modern design accompanied by accurate and comprehensive workout tracking and general lifestyle features such as smartphone notification support, it’s a great all round smartwatch for those with an interest in keeping fit. Battery life is also a major boon here. 

The downside? We can’t quite get over the limited software and lack of support for third party apps. This is quite the letdown as far as we’re concerned. However, if you’re happy keeping all your workout data in one place and have no interest in installing additional apps, then the GT 2e will undoubtedly prove a satisfactory purchase.

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