The original Huawei Watch is perhaps one of the most popular Android Wear devices to ever exist. While a tad pricey for some, the original Watch offers up a more “watch-like” design, thanks to its circular display. It also has a long-lasting battery, straps that are easily replaceable, and comes in plenty of different color variants.
Some users prefer a sportier watch though, which is where the OG Huawei Watch falls a bit short. It’s quite the classy looking wearable, but you certainly wouldn’t want to go on a run with it. So, in hopes of pleasing a wider variety of users, Huawei is announcing two new Android Wear devices, the Huawei Watch 2 and Huawei Watch 2 Classic.
Huawei Watch 2 and Watch 2 Classic features
That’s right – Huawei has unveiled two different Watch 2 variants this time around, similar to what Samsung did with its Gear S3 watches. The LTE-capable Huawei Watch 2 is certainly the sportier of the two, while the Watch 2 Classic is, well, the classier one. I probably didn’t have to tell you that, though. We’ll get into the differences in a bit, but just know that these two devices are actually pretty packed with features.
One of the big gripes with LG’s new Watch Style is that it doesn’t come with many of the cool new features that the LG Watch Sport has. The Style has no NFC, no GPS and no heart rate sensor; it’s just… a smartwatch. Thankfully, both the Huawei Watch 2 and Watch 2 Classic come with (almost) the same feature set, so you won’t be dealing with any buyer’s remorse if you opt for one model over the other.
Both the Watch 2 and Watch 2 Classic are running Google’s recently-unveiled Android Wear 2.0, which should come as no surprise. The biggest additions to the wearable OS are the ability to install standalone applications, take advantage of more customizable watch faces with complications, and tons of aesthetic improvements throughout the interface.
Along with Android Wear 2.0, these devices also have Google Assistant on board, just like LG’s new smartwatches. With the Assistant, users will be able to add things to their shopping lists, set calendar reminders, make restaurant reservations, and even control connected devices around their home. The Assistant is basically a much more robust version of the Google voice assistant that came with pre-Android Wear 2.0 devices.
Both devices come with Google Assistant and support for Android Pay
Also new in Android Wear 2.0 is support for mobile payments via Android Pay, as long as the watch has the proper hardware. In this case, both the Watch 2 and Classic have NFC chips, which means you’ll be able to use these devices with Android Pay.
Here’s where the similarities start to thin out. The main differences between the Watch 2 and the Watch 2 Classic lie mostly in aesthetics. As you can see from the images, the Huawei Watch 2 is being marketed as the sportier model, thanks to its silicone straps. The Watch 2 Classic, on the other hand, sports a stainless steel bezel and leather straps, giving it a more stylish look.
The main differences between the Watch 2 and the Watch 2 Classic lie mostly in aesthetics
If you do want to work out with the Classic, you shouldn’t have a hard time doing so; both models come with a built-in GPS and heart rate sensor. This means that you’re not only going to get more accurate running stats, you can also use Google Maps on the watch itself (without having your phone nearby) for real-time run mapping. Both devices also feature an IP68 rating for dust and water resistance, meaning you can go swimming and not have to worry about taking them off first.
As far as fitness-focused features are concerned, these watches will be able to give you real-time heart rate zone information, including dynamic heart rate monitoring and zone indicators. You’ll also get real-time stage guidance, speed statistics, heart rate warnings, lap reminders and goal progress reminders. They’ll also give you data that many higher-end fitness trackers provide, such as VO2 Max assessments, training evaluation, recovery time advice and more after each workout.
Now we get to the biggest difference between the two. The sportier Huawei Watch 2 comes with 4G LTE connectivity, while the Watch 2 Classic does not. Of course, the benefit of having an LTE-capable smartwatch will only be interesting to some folks, while others might rather choose a watch without LTE capabilities. For starters, the Watch 2 is a tad bulkier than the Classic, and the LTE connection will certainly be a battery drain. On the positive side though, you’ll be able to use the Watch 2 without needing your smartphone nearby. You’ll be able to take calls, send texts and more, all from your wrist.
Huawei Watch 2 and Watch 2 Classic specifications
|Huawei Watch 2||Huawei Watch 2 Classic|
390 x 390 resolution
390 x 390 resolution
|Processor||Snapdragon Wear 2100||Snapdragon Wear 2100|
|Storage||4GB (2.3GB available)||4GB (2.3GB available)|
|Battery life||Up to 2 days of normal use|
|Up to 3 days of normal use|
|GPS||Yes, GPS + Glonass||Yes, GPS + Glonass|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth 4.1 BLE+BR/EDR|
Wi-Fi 2.4GHz 802.11 b/g/n Cellular: GSM/WCDMA/TDS/CDMA2000/TDD-LTE/FDD-LTE (only for 4G version)
|Bluetooth 4.1 BLE+BR/EDR|
Wi-Fi 2.4GHz 802.11 b/g/n
|Sensors||Accelerometer, gyroscope, barometer, heart rate sensor (PPG), CAP capacitance sensor, ALS/ambient light sensor, geomagnetic sensor||Accelerometer, gyroscope, barometer, heart rate sensor (PPG), CAP capacitance sensor, ALS/ambient light sensor, geomagnetic sensor|
|Software||Android Wear 2.0||Android Wear 2.0|
|Size||48.9 x 45 x 12.6mm||48.9 x 45 x 12.6mm|
|Weight (without band)||Watch 2 (Bluetooth): about 40g|
Watch 2 (LTE): about 42g
|Colors||Dynamic Orange, Carbon Black, Concrete Grey||Titanium Grey|
Both the Watch 2 and Watch 2 Classic sport a 1.2-inch display with a resolution of 390 x 390. Both are powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Wear 2100 processor, and come with 420mAh batteries. Huawei says the 4G-capable Watch 2 will be able to last around 2 days on a single charge, while the Classic will be able to last 3 days. If you’re using these devices in workout mode with the GPS and heart rate sensors turned on, you can expect about 11 hours of use. But for those times where you just want to use your watch as a watch, these devices can last up to 26 days. Not bad!
While these devices seem to have top-of-the-line specifications, there is one area where the Watch 2 line falls short: internal storage. Both watches come with 4GB of on-board storage, though only 2.3GB is available to the user. This means you’ll have some room to store music directly on the watch, but not much.
As for the size of the watch cases, both models are a tad on the big side with 45mm watch casings. For comparison, the original Huawei Watch came with a 42mm case, while the Moto 360 (2nd Gen.) came in either 46 or 42mm variants.
Huawei Watch 2 and Watch 2 Classic pricing and availability
The Huawei Watch 2 will be available starting in March in Spain, France, Portugal, Italy, Germany and China, while it’s coming to the US, UK, Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, Ireland, The Nordics, Thailand, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, India, South Africa, Poland, Austria, Saudi Arabia, Japan and UAE in April. The Watch 2 won’t make its way to Malaysia until May.
While exact pricing details have yet to be revealed, the company says you’ll be able to pick up the watch starting at €329.
So, what are your thoughts on Huawei’s new wearables? If the price is right, are you planning on picking either one? Be sure to let us know what you think in the comments!
Android Authority is on the show floor at MWC 2017, bringing you all the new news as it happens. Head here to check out all our MWC 2017 coverage!
Next: The best smartwatches