Huawei Band 6 Review: A Smartwatch or a Fitness Tracker?

Huawei Band 6 Review

So I have been using this latest wearable hit from Huawei called the Band 6 for a few weeks now and what I can really say is that it is not only a very sleek and freshly looking fitness tracker from the brand, it also delivers what it promises, most especially that 2-week battery life in one charge. I think I have enough time using this Huawei Band 6 that I can now share with you my full review of the device. I hope this review will help you decide whether this the device you are looking for or not. 

A quick tour around the Huawei Band 6

For some unknown reason, Huawei decided to skip the Band 5 naming and skipped directly to the Band 6. Perhaps to catch up with the competition in terms of naming their devices as we know there are the Honor Band 6 and Mi Band 6 also just got released in the fitness tracker industry very recently, I don't know. Or maybe this is to emphasize how a lot of changes that Huawei has put into this device as compared to the Band 4, could be, right? But whatever the reason behind it, what matters is that the brand new and latest smart fitness tracker from Huawei is finally here and it is bigger and more exciting and more sleek looking than its predecessors. 

The review unit that I got is in Forest Green. Two other color variants are also available called Graphite Black and Amber Sunrise. In the box that the Band 6 comes in, everything is pretty straight forward. As you can see in the image below, there is the Band 6 itself together with the 2-pin magnetic charger and some paperwork and nothing more. 

Huawei Band 6 Review

If you are familiar with Huawei's smart wearable releases in the in the past several months, you will immediately notice that the Huawei Band 6 is very similar to the Huawei Watch Fit smartwatch in terms of physical design. They are so look alike that the Band 6 appears to be the younger sibling or "Lite" version of the Watch Fit. Well, in many aspects of this Band 6, hardware and software, that's almost true. 

One of the main specs of the Huawei Band 6 is of course its massive display panel. It now sports a huge and more vibrant 1.47-inch AMOLED FullView Display. Yes you read that right, the display now boasts AMOLED and alongside it are 368 x 194 resolution and a full touch screen panel. And in case you have not noticed yet, it's got a huge display too. In fact, that's about 148% increase versus its previous generation. That means more room for our eyes to look at and for our huge fingers to navigate on which translates to a more convenient user experience most especially when we are out doing our workout routines with this device. Being an AMOLED-equipped device, the screen is now brighter too and does not pose any challenge when being used outdoor. 

Huawei Band 6 Review

Aside from the display, another thing that makes this device more attractive is its build. There we can see it has curved edges around it that gives the smart band a more premium look and feel. Even the glass on the display panel is curved on the edges as well, 2.5D glass panel, which goes along very well with its body.  Speaking of the body, it is actually made of fiber glass material, but to the touch, it feels metallic thanks to its super solid and sturdy build. 

On the right side of the display is the single physical button that is used to wake up the screen, accessing the on-screen menu, and to go back to the home display. 

Huawei Band 6 Review

Underneath are the charging pins and sensors. It features 6-Axis IMU sensors which includes accelerometer, optical heart rate, gyroscope and others. 

As for the wrist band, it's slim just like a typical smart band device and it's made of silicon rubber material. It's very comfortable to wear both while doing exercises and while sleeping. In fact I only take this off only when charging the device which is close to every 10 days or more. I like the fact that it has so many holes, up to 18 in total, which means it will fit to many wrist sizes. 

Huawei Band 6 Review

If there was one thing to not like about this Huawei Band 6, that would be its wrist strap is replaceable. So what you get is what you will have ever. It is going to be very difficult if you manage to break the strap. 

Inside the Huawei Band 6

Now that we are done talking about what the Huawei Band 6 offers on the outside, let's get inside it. Software-wise, the Band 6 does not sport Android Wear or any Android-based platform which is of course expected since this is a smart band not a smart watch. But the good thing about this device is it is compatible with both Android and iOS smartphones. Users will need to have at least Android 6.0 version or later running on their devices and at least iOS 9.0 version on their iPad or iPhone smartphones. 

Huawei Band 6 Review

Keep in mind though that if you are using a non-Huawei smartphone, you will need to download the Huawei Health app to your device before you can pair the Band 6 with your phone. For Huawei-made smartphones, the app is already pre-installed and you can pair it up right out of the box. Upon connecting the Band 6 to your smartphone, make sure that you upgrade the firmware within the Health App to make sure that you get all the latest updates and features this device offers including its unique features such as the camera shutter (Huawei devices only), all-day SpO2 monitoring and Menstrual Cycle tracker (Huawei devices only). 

I am so happy to inform you that the on-device software or interface on the Huawei Band 6 is very responsive, fast and rarely lags. Most of the time, the screen wakes up almost instantly everytime I raise my wrist to check time. It, from time to time, lags or does not wake up at all, but those instances are very rare. 

Notifications are pushed to my smartphones real time whether it is app and sms notifications or incoming call alerts, I receive them right away on the Huawei Band 6. The only downside is that you can't expand the messages on the Band 6 to read the rest. Now, can you answer calls using the Band 6, unfortunately it does not have a built-in mic or speaker, so the answer is no. You can decline a call though, but to answer you will have to take the phone out of your pocket. 

Like a typical smart band around, the Huawei Band 6 can track all the basics such as steps, burned calories, sleep, heart rate, stress level, SpO2 level and more. Overall, the device can track up to 96 workout modes including the customized ones so whether you are into cycling, running, swimming, or even rope skipping, you are covered. 

Based on my experience and observation, the Huawei Band 6 reads and tracks my activities and health status pretty accurate. If you have been using or was able to use Huawei Health App before, the experience is just the same. Displayed data and reading them are straightforward and easy to understand. Navigating through the menu is very smooth and easy as well. The touch panel and interface are responsive all the time. It has a lot of features to explore, actually. 

What is SpO2?

Blood oxygen saturation (SpO2) refers to the blood's concentration of oxygen-carrying hemoglobin relative to all hemoglobin. The degree of oxygenation is an important determinant in and indicator of a person's fitness levels. Sub 90% SpO2 is considered low and may cause a person to experience fatigue and a quickened pulse.  Prolonged low SpO2 has long-term adverse health effects, so it is crucial to continuously monitor and analyze these readings. 

Huawei Band 6 Review

This is actually not the first time Huawei has featured an SpO2 monitor on a smart wearable, the first one was in 2019. That enabled its users to determine their SpO2 level with a single reading, so that they can take action to mitigate potential risks. But this feature had to be manually enabled to work, well not anymore with this new Huawei Band 6. It can now monitor the user's SpO2 level all day long which is a nice feature to have especially if you are someone who needs it always monitored. 

Unfortunately and obviously, I was not able to try the Band 6's Menstrual Cycle tracker. Let's leave this to female reviewers of this device. Besides, I read somewhere that this feature, together with the Camera Shutter, is only available on Huawei phones. I checked on my non-Huawei smartphones multiple times and I could not find these features there. Maybe because my Huawei Band 6 software is not updated? I am not so sure though. I was unable to update the software on my Band 6 via Huawei Health app, always getting an error message. 

Watch Faces

Another feature I like about this Huawei Band 6 is the Watch Faces. When you connect this to your Huawei Health App, you will have access to more than a hundred Watch Faces specifically made for the Band 6. Over a hundred of selections to match your mood of the day.  While I enjoy using and looking at the available watch faces, most of them are aimed towards younger users. Hopefully more and more watch faces will be added in the future. 

Huawei Band 6 Review

Battery life

Huawei boasts this Band 6 to offer up to two weeks of battery life on a single charge or about two days on a five minute charge. That maybe true if you use the device to its minimum, I never experienced that with this device. But I am very impressed at how long its battery life lasts, more than 10 days all the time. I never take this device off my hand (unless it is time to charge) and always at full brightness with most features tuned on including push notifications. Plus, it does not take that long to charge it back up. So in this department, I am very happy with the Huawei Band 6. 

How about its 5ATM feature? Well, like I said, I never take this off which means even when I am washing the dishes, taking shower, or getting caught in the rain, I have it on me. So far, it is still working very fine. Swimming? I think it going to work just fine as well, it's a smart fitness tracker after all. 

Final Impressions

If you are a type of user who are not into smartwatches or regular fitness bands are too small to your liking, someone who wants to have a wearable that is capable of delivering most features that a typical smartphone can, or simply does not want to shell out that much of money for a smartwatch yet at the same time wants to make sure that you don't miss so much in terms of user experience, then the Huawei Band 6, I think, should be one of the devices on the top of your list. I think for its price tag of Php2,599, the Band 6 is a good choice both for its looks and its software features and overall user experience it offers.

It tracks your daily health routines pretty accurately, the device is very easy to use and data it presents easy to read, and that battery life is just a piece of cake of the Huawei Band 6. Not to mention, it is a very sleek and premium looking smart band available today in the local market. Like many reviewers of this device are saying, the Huawei Band 6 blurs the line between a smart band and a smartwatch in terms of design, functionality and features. Not too big to be a smartwatch and not too small to be a smart band.

Huawei Band 6 Review

Huawei Band 6 specs:

  • 1.47-inch AMOLED FullView Display
  • 368 x 194 pixels
  • Color screen
  • Touch display
  • Offers more than 100 watch faces
  • Wrist band: Silicon rubber
  • Bluetooth: 2.4 GHz, BT5.0, BLE
  • Android 6 or later
  • iOS 9.0 or later
  • 6-axis IMU sensors
    • Accelerometer
    • Gyroscope
    • Optical heart rate
  • 5 ATM water resistant
  • 18 grams
  • Magnetic charging cable
  • Graphite Black, Amber Sunrise, Forest Green
  • 180mAh battery
  • Php2,599
The Huawei Band is now available in the Philippines for only Php2,599. You can purchase one from Shopee via Huawei's official store here. It can also be bought at Huawei official retailers and partners nationwide. 
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