Selecting the proper health tracker isn’t as straightforward because it seems. It’s not merely a matter of selecting the greatest wanting or most reasonably priced unit, because it concerned some particulars that many customers don’t typically care to consider from the offset – options, software program, GPS help and the likes. The extra options you bolt onto the diminutive system, the extra you’re anticipated to pay in consequence. For many, forking out the additional money for smartwatches aren’t an choice both and don’t all the time ship on the sort of performances you’d anticipate.
A few weeks in the past, Huawei hosted a health occasion for chosen media, the place they launched a number of latest choices now formally out there in South Africa. As a part of the launch, we have been taken by way of a rigorous exercise to check the capabilities of the Huawei Band 2 Pro, one in every of the units launched on the day. I managed to spend a couple of further weeks with the health tracker, taking it via a collection of exams and health actions.
Having beforehand reviewed the Huawei Band a couple of years again, the expertise of utilizing a Huawei health tracker wouldn’t have been unusual. That stated, quite a bit has modified in the two years since, to not point out the record of latest units alongside the means. I might be evaluating the Huawei Band 2 Pro towards certainly one of the hottest health trackers in the enterprise, the Fitbit Alta HR, each which have comparable profiles. The outcomes are fascinating.
Construct and Design
Having designed one among the best-looking smartwatches in the enterprise, Huawei hasn’t tried to reinvent the design of the Band, choosing a extra generic variant you’ll even discover on these low cost knock-offs. That stated, it’s a lot totally different from the first Band launched, which tried to look extra like a standard watch than a health tracker. In contrast towards the Alta HR, the models are virtually similar when it comes to their general look and measurement. In contrast to the Alta HA, nevertheless, it doesn’t can help you clip off the straps on a whim, as they’re screwed into place. You’ll nonetheless be capable of change the straps if you want, simply not as simply. The strap itself isn’t something overly difficult, the rubberised band is straightforward to clip into place when you’ve reached the desired tightness in your wrist.
…it doesn’t help you clip off the straps on a whim, as they’re screwed into place…
The edges of the unit are angled outward and have a plastic silver end to convey a contact of magnificence to the pretty simplistic design. Throughout my time with the gadget, I’ve picked up two scratches, one on both aspect. They’re not very noticeable, however provided that I’ve tried to keep away from bumping into something that may scratch the floor, I’m a bit perplexed as to what I truly did to scratch it, or if the silver coating is susceptible to simply decide up a number of scratches alongside the method. Under the silver panels, the underside of the unit has a matte black end, because it curves round to satisfy the different finish. The underside homes the coronary heart price sensor, one in every of the extra essential options of any health tracker. The sensor protrudes just a little from the base in an effort to make simpler contact together with your wrist without having to over-tighten the strap.
Though you’re not capable of see the two further sensors, they’re constructed into the Band 2 Pro. These embrace the conventional accelerometer, which tracks your steps, in addition to an onboard GPS. The latter is sort of a powerful inclusion on such a small and reasonably priced gadget.
…it permits for a water depth of as much as 50m…
The Band 2 Pro has a 5 ATM score, which interprets to a degree 5 atmospheric strain help. In the actual world, because of this the unit is in a position for use in rain, snow, showering, swimming and shallow snorkelling. What’s nice about the score is that it permits for a water depth of as much as 50m, which is considerably higher than anything in an identical worth vary.
General, the construct of the Band 2 Pro could be very strong and strong, though it doesn’t look overly flashy to face out from the crowd.
Display and Show
Given the slender construct, the display is pretty small. The unit has a PMOLED panel, Passive-Matrix show. That is generally utilized in smaller units corresponding to health trackers and different wearables. Because of this the display has restricted decision, colors and general brightness. Though the textual content was fairly pixelated, the monochrome show was greater than satisfactory even in daylight, however maybe not direct daylight.
Given the slender construct, the display is pretty small.
The display additionally sports activities a capacitive contact sensor on the backside finish, which is used to scroll between the numerous screens. The sensor is ready to detect two forms of touches, the easy click on, in addition to the lengthy press. It’s a easy system to flick between choices, whereas additionally with the ability to begin and finish actions. The menu transitions are clean with a couple of animations introduced on every separate display, that are additionally clean. The menus can be found in a cycle, so there’s no scrolling backwards when you’ve missed the desired exercise. This can be a widespread trait amongst health trackers, which isn’t an enormous challenge.
There are further makes use of for the show as properly, which supplies notifications for messages and incoming calls. The textual content is definitely readable making it straightforward to determine callers and the likes.
When the Band 2 Pro first landed in numerous different areas in June, set up and pairing can be required by way of the Huawei Put on app. Huawei has since modified this to their up to date Well being app, which was beforehand solely obtainable on Huawei smartphones. In consequence, the software program gives a higher consumer expertise and the enabling of options. The Well being app has additionally undergone quite a few updates over the similar time, which I really feel have made the expertise all the higher.
The app gives a view of your whole exercise historical past, in addition to a number of summaries alongside the means. The house tab (which opens upon opening the app) offers a view of your present step rely and energy burnt for the day. Under that there’s a document of your final tracked train in abstract type, which incorporates (for a run) your distance, velocity and time, and a small picture of the map for the route you took. Proper under the train abstract is a view of the day’s sleep, present weight and present coronary heart fee. Sadly, customers aren’t capable of change what info they see right here, solely to reorder the method by which it seems. What customers are capable of do, although, is choose every of the summaries offered to be able to get a greater view of every, which could be expanded into days, weeks, months and even years.
The small print of every are fairly thorough, which is one thing I used to be fairly impressed with. For instance, for any of your Outside run, customers have further particulars resembling the route taken, because of the built-in GPS, period and distance of the run. Breaking this down even additional the stats give you a view of your speeds per kilometre, charts (for coronary heart fee cadence and tempo over this time), and even breaks down the efficiency of your run versus earlier actions. This shows your cardio effort, VO2Max (oxygen consumption throughout the train) in addition to the recommended restoration time, which a variety of customers might discover extraordinarily useful. Again on the House tab, under the abstract panel is a historic view of your step counter over the previous month, which additionally offers a view as to what number of occasions you’ve reached your step aim and the every day common.
Whereas the software program might have began off as one among the Huawei health suite’s weaknesses, it has definitely stepped up its recreation with a collection of updates
The second tab from the listing at the backside of the app is the for Train. This tab permits customers to have the ability to choose the sort of exercise they want to choose from, which incorporates operating, strolling and biking. These exercises, nevertheless, can be tracked by way of your smartphone and never the health tracker, which truly provides you nice flexibility as to the way you want to decide up and workouts and never being restricted to solely utilizing your tracker. There’s a further choice that permits customers to pick a coaching programme. At present, there are solely operating plans obtainable, which incorporates 5KM, 10KM, half marathon and marathon coaching plans. The plans are additionally fastened in period, ranging from 4 weeks for the 5KM operating plan.
The third tab is just titled “Me.” Right here customers can set their every day step objectives, edit their consumer profile with necessary info reminiscent of age, peak and the likes. Customers can even choose different purposes they want to share their knowledge with, which incorporates UP by Jawbone, Google Match and MyFitnessPal. The UP app is a helpful integration, because it permits customers who monitor their Vitality health to combine with the Discovery app by the use of the Jawbone app. Syncing right here is completed routinely, however for greatest outcomes, I might all three apps a minimum of as soon as a day to permit for lively syncing. Different choices on this tab are the Settings and About hyperlinks. This tab additionally offers a view of the presently paired gadget and the battery standing. Customers can add multiple Huawei gadget at a time. The place the unit does increase past the Huawei ecosystem is permitting customers to pair Jabra, Suunto and Polar coronary heart price screens for higher HR monitoring.
The ultimate display, arguably the most essential, is out there from the House tab. On the prime proper of the display you’ll discover the Band icon, which when clicked takes you to a separate display the place customers can get further info for every of their workouts, allow further options reminiscent of TruSleep, exercise reminders, alarms, steady coronary heart monitoring (when you don’t want to save lots of on battery energy), to call a number of. Whereas the options themselves is probably not novel, I like the concept that customers can toggle whether or not to allow or disable fairly a big choice, which then permits you to prolong the battery lifetime of the unit between expenses.
Whereas the software program might have began off as certainly one of the Huawei health suite’s weaknesses, it has definitely stepped up its recreation with a collection of updates, even throughout the 2 to Three-week evaluate window, which I discovered very helpful. Receiving steady updates is an effective signal that builders aren’t merely proud of the present established order of the providers rendered, however in search of new methods to enhance, or just repair previous bugs.
Efficiency and Battery Life
When evaluating the precise step rely of the Band 2 Pro towards the actual world, in addition to the Fitbit Cost 2, it had an inexpensive degree of accuracy. For each 100 steps taken, the unit was inside a 5-10 step vary, which suggests it picked up 90-95 steps. This isn’t dangerous, all issues thought-about. Unfold out over 10,000 steps, nevertheless, and also you’ll be left 500 to 1,000 steps brief each day. I did discover, nevertheless, that on sure days the unit achieved higher outcomes, truly beating the Cost 2 in steps tracked for the day. A lot of this got here right down to terrain variations akin to strolling up and down stairs, the place the Cost 2 faired quite a bit higher.
When it got here to choosing up runs and workouts, the Band 2 Pro was quite a bit higher and extra correct than monitoring your steps all through the day. It was extra correct for outside runs than the Cost 2, particularly contemplating it used a mixture of the accelerometer and GPS to make an correct prediction on the distance coated.
When it got here to choosing up runs and workouts, the Band 2 Pro was so much higher and extra correct than monitoring your steps all through the day.
When it comes to the battery life, the unit diversified fairly considerably. For the first week, I opted to solely use the indoor monitoring mode to select up runs and exercises. Accomplished four exercises in the first week, the battery solely reached the 50% mark. As soon as the unit was absolutely charged, I opted to pick the outside monitoring function, which might allow the GPS monitoring. Having coated one other four exercises, which included operating and soccer, the battery attain notification threshold by day 6. Enabling the GPS signifies that you’re capable of constantly monitor your actions for as much as Three hours and 30 minutes. Utilizing solely the accelerometer gave you a battery lifetime of round two weeks, by means of estimation. Huawei has indicated a battery period of as much as three weeks, however this doesn’t cater for any exercises included in the timeframe. Nonetheless, these are fairly spectacular numbers.
Sleep monitoring may be enabled for customers that require such info, whereas additionally with the ability to set two totally different modes for sleep monitoring. The primary supplies primary info resembling deep and lightweight sleep, in addition to the period. Enabling the TruSleep mode permits customers to trace their mild, deep and REM sleep patterns, in addition to the quantity of occasions the customers wakes up throughout the course of the night time, which is regular. Based mostly on these outcomes, the Well being app supplies further evaluation of your sleep together with making some options as to your sleep routine based mostly on precise scientific knowledge offered by the Centre for Dynamical Biomakers at BIDMC, which has a relation to Harvard Medical Faculty. A very helpful function for anybody who has questions or difficulties with their sleep routine.
Whereas I wasn’t capable of check the accuracy of the VO2Max studying, some analysis has indicated that the outcomes are off by 5-10% on common. This isn’t all that dangerous contemplating the worth, however should you’re in want of monitoring these ranges for particular causes, you could need to look elsewhere. As talked about beforehand, customers can choose to combine with different units that monitor these outcomes a lot better. That stated, the place the unit does have a leg to face on is the info it supplies about your cardio enhancements between runs, as indicated by a cost highlighting the present versus your common outcomes.
The Huawei Band 2 Pro will not be the best-looking and even best-performing unit round, however it has various options on supply that’s inside primary efficiencies to make them helpful. Contemplating that the unit solely prices R999 (RRP), it’s fairly a steal. With the ability to measure your actions, the addition of a coronary heart fee monitor, in-depth sleep evaluation, in addition to a built-in GPS, you’re getting fairly a function packed unit. For customers wishing to nonetheless monitor their Vitality factors, the integration to UP by Jawbone is a large plus. And provided that the Huawei record of health units have formally launched in South Africa, it’s solely a matter of time earlier than Discovery might be pressured to introduce direct integration to sync with the Huawei Well being app.
Whereas a couple of of the interfaces and software program options might use a bit of work to streamline the course of, the continued work and common updates additionally give customers a way that there are enhancements been made pretty typically. As the Huawei ecosystem grows, the capabilities will solely increase, which makes the Band 2 Pro a reasonably good prospect going into 2019.
Huawei Band 2 Pro
- Glossy and lightweight
- Nice battery life
- Constructed-in GPS
- Worth for cash
- Degree 5 ATM
- No changeable watch faces
- No onboard storage
- Ease of Studying zero%
- Ease of Use zero%
- Enjoyment zero%
- Design zero%
- Efficiency zero%
- Worth for Cash zero%