I have been testing out tons of smartwatches and fitness trackers in the last few months, perhaps about a year or so. There will always be that one key feature that I will keep an eye on every single smartwatch or fitness tracker that I review. And that is the battery life.
Why is that important? For starters, I am always outside on the move or in the office where I don’t have the charger with me. And I do need a smartwatch or fitness tracker that can hold its power for a long time. And thank goodness that the new HUAWEI Band 7 does exactly that.
On paper, the new HUAWEI Band 7 is able to last 14 days on a single charge. But on my test, it is able to last up to 9 days or so as I usually have it on my wrist and I also have the heart rate and SpO2 monitor turned on at all times. Whatever you do in the settings will affect the battery life. So be mindful of what features that you want to keep either on or off.
First Look and Design – HUAWEI Band 7
I do expect to see something different on the HUAWEI Band 7 against the previous Band 6. At first glance, there’s nothing different about it. It looks identical. I have no idea what the differences are but I was convinced that it may be on the software side. I was partly wrong on this part. The HUAWEI Band 7 is made slightly thinner than Band 6. You won’t be able to tell the difference if you’re wearing both Band 6 and Band 7 at the same time.
But on paper, the Band 7 is measured at 9.99mm thickness as opposed to 10.99mm on the Band 6. It is also slightly wider by 0.6mm and taller by 1.35mm. So technically, the new Band 7 is slightly bigger but thinner than the Band 6. I honestly do not feel the thickness difference but it does feel lighter on my wrist.
The screen is a 1.47” AMOLED display with rich vibrant colours and deep blacks. It has less bezels around the edges and it does look so much better. It seems to blend well with the polymer based watch frame along with a physical button on the right side of the watch shell. The colour variant of the review unit I received is known as Wilderness Green. There are 3 other colour options available – Nebula Pink, Red Flame and Graphite Black. I felt like I’m in the army by wearing this Wilderness Green colourway.
The watch strap is made of silicone, like why wouldn’t it? It is probably the best material to use on a fitness tracker such as the HUAWEI Band 7 because it is highly durable and waterproof. Most of all, it really feels comfortable to wear. The silicone strap is obviously replaceable via the quick release pin and comes in many colours.
Around the back, there’s the heart rate and SpO2 monitor right in the middle that lights up with bright green LED when it scans your vital signs. On top of the sensors, there are two positive and negative charging nodes. The charger is attached to the back of the watch with quite a strong magnet, which is good. I don’t have to worry about it accidentally detaching from the charger. This design has not changed from any of the previous versions. So the familiarity feels right at home.
So if almost all aspects of the design is very similar to its predecessors, then what is the difference? This is when we will look into the software side.
Daily Use and User Experience
As I said earlier, I do prefer a smartwatch or fitness tracker that can last me a few days on a single charge. This HUAWEI Band 7 excels in that area. Battery life is great. If or when the battery drops to below 5%, I can quickly charge it up for 10 minutes and get it to extend for another couple of days. This is something nice to have on a useful device like this. Low battery on your way out, plug it in for 5 minutes or so and you’re good to go for another day or two.
Since the Band 7 has a larger display, texts are easier to read. I do wish that I can adjust the text size to suit my preference. I like it to be slightly smaller so that I can read long messages in a single glance. Plus, it will look nice too. I do have another fitness tracker that comes with an adjustable font size and it does look so much nicer. Just my two cents on this matter and hopefully HUAWEI can upgrade the OS to have that feature.
The HUAWEI Band 7 is first and foremost, a fitness tracker. It comes with a total of 96 different workout modes on the HUAWEI TruSport Fitness System. With that many workout modes, there will always be something for everyone. From simple modes such as brisk walking to more complex yoga sessions, the HUAWEI Band 7 will keep track of all your activities. It will even motivate you into going further or send out reminders of your workout times. You got a fitness coach on your own wrist.
With heart rate and SpO2 readings, the HUAWEI Band 7 can keep track of your vital signs as well. Using the continuous monitoring feature, it will even send out a warning if your oxygen level drops below the normal percentage even while you’re sleeping. It is very important to monitor your oxygen level especially when you have sleep apnea. It also helps to monitor your stress level and help you with breathing exercises.
Other features available are sleep monitoring, notifications, weather reports, stopwatch, timer, alarm, flashlight and find your phone feature. These features are pretty much a standard on any fitness bands out there. While it is a normal feature, it is very useful.
All that I have mentioned above can also be monitored and controlled via the HUAWEI Health app on your phone. Do take note that the HUAWEI Band 7 works on both Android and iOS devices. And I’m pretty sure it works better on a HUAWEI device that runs the same OS as the fitness band itself – HarmonyOS.
Pairing the HUAWEI Band 7 is super easy. Turn on the band and open up the HUAWEI Health app. Add a new device, select your band and done. Pretty quick and straightforward if you ask me. The HUAWEI Health app is quite intuitive too. It is easy to start configuring your personalised settings for your new Band 7 including choosing a new watch face from the gallery. I think I have lost count on how many watch faces there are but I understand that they have more than 7000 different watch faces available. Wow. Of course, most of them are not free.
From then on, you can start using your HUAWEI Band 7 immediately. If you wish to start your workout, simply select your preferred mode from the band itself or set it from the app. In case you forget to turn on the workout mode, you don’t have to worry because the Band 7 will be able to auto detect a workout. Select yes to the prompt on you’re good to go. Easy right?
What is not to love about the new HUAWEI Band 7. It is your own personal fitness coach that sits on your wrist. It’s your own PA that will let you know of any reminders or messages. It can also tell you the current weather. The new upgrade on the OS worked better than before and is more stable in terms of performance consistency. The workout auto detection feature is very useful because I tend to forget to set it up beforehand.
It is one of the fitness bands that I would simply slap on my wrist and forget it is there. It is light enough for me to wear to sleep and useful to have when I’m out and about. It monitors my sleep pattern and tells me when I’m in deep sleep in the sleep graph. It will vibrate to wake me up in the morning too, thanks to the alarm function.
So yes, it is a useful little device. If you’re thinking of getting one, you might want to consider the new HUAWEI Band 7. If you’re worried about compatibility, fret not. The HUAWEI Band 7 works with any Android phone and Apple’s iPhone. You just have to download the HUAWEI Health app on your phone.
The new HUAWEI Band 7 is now on sale at HUAWEI’s official store and is retailing for RM219.00.