Huawei Band 6 Review – Affordable Fitness Tracker
The Huawei Band 6 is their latest addition to their fitness smartband line-up in Malaysia that aims to blend a large display, a slew of fitness and activity tracking functionality and long battery life into a usual narrow fitness band form factor. Here’s our Huawei Band 6 review where we suss out if it’s worth your hard-earned dosh…
What’s in the Box and Design
Out of the box, the Band 6 has a relatively spartan selection of accessories as it only comes with the Band 6 itself and the obligatory proprietary charging cable which ends in a USB-A port with the other end terminating in a pair of unique pins that latch onto the underside of the watch. Bar these two bits of kit and the usual quick start manuals, there’s nothing else provided in the box.
In keeping with many other fitness bands, the Huawei Band 6 has a tall, rectangular form factor for its display that uses a 1.47-inch FullView AMOLED touchscreen with a 64% screen-to-body ratio encased in a casing that’s water resistant to 5ATM.
Done up in a nondescript matte gray finish, the case is on the chunky side. Aside from the touchscreen and a side-mounted button, the only other features of interest is the underside heart rate sensor and two embedded studs which dock with the charging pins from the provided cable to recharge the band.
The straps are made of elastomer which is relatively comfortable for extended wear with a normal watch-style clasp made of plastic.
Overall build quality is fair even if it looks rather plasticky but the biggest benefit here is its 5ATM water resistance which makes it suitable for daily wear and forays into the odd fresh or chlorinated swimming pool or two down to 50 metres.
At just 18g, the Band 6 is exceptionally light and donning it feels almost weightless.
Huawei Band 6 Review – Specifications
Intended as an affordable fitness band, the Huawei Band 6 has a processor of unknown vintage without any official literature as to its provenance.
There’s also no onboard storage so you can’t add music tracks or the option to add or remove apps but that’s typically not a necessary feature for a fitness band.
The Huawei Band 6 is able to monitor and track your step count, calories burned and distance covered. It is also able to track indoor and outdoor runs, outdoor and indoor walks, both indoor and outdoor cycling, pool laps, elliptical trainer usage, rowing machine usage and skipping rope usage too.
The band is also able to automatically track selected workouts which are so far limited to indoor and outdoor runs, indoor and outdoor walks, elliptical and rower usage.
On paper, the Band 6 is rated to support 96 different sports modes. This is limited to just tracking workouts and it lacks an animated coaching mode like the more sophisticated Huawei Watch Fit though it’s not a major factor seeing that the Band 6 costs half as much.
The band is also able to track both blood oxygen level and heart rate 24/7 as well as sleep quality tracking via their TruSleep 2.0 tech.
With TruSleep, you’re able to assess your sleep quality so you can see how long you’ve spent in the various sleep stages from light sleep to REM sleep while also providing suggestions on how to improve your sleep quality.
Another feature that the Band 6 is able to track is Sp02 level which in layman’s terms is your blood oxygen level. It’s also able to track menstrual cycles too for women.
On top of the obligatory fitness tracking, the Band 6 fulfills a modicum of other watch related functions like telling the time, alarms and showing notifications from a paired phone. It doesn’t have speakers so the band vibrates when there are incoming alerts.
You also have the option to swap the virtual watch face from a selection of free ones or if you’re well heeled, a range of better looking paid ones too.
It’s also able to control music playback and act as a remote shutter release off a paired phone. Needless to say, the lack of storage and speakers means that the Band 6 doesn’t work as a separate music player as it can’t store, stream or play music.
Should you misplace your phone, the Band 6 is able to trigger your phone speakers, assuming that it’s within range, to make a sound so that you can find it in an easier fashion.
Battery life is rated for up to 14 days of normal usage or 10 days of intensive use with a full charge requiring 65 minutes to fully charge the 180mAh battery.
|Display||1.47-inch AMOLED touchscreen, 194 x 368 pixels|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth 5.0, 2.4GHz WiFi|
|Battery||180mAh lithium polymer (65 minutes for full charge – quoted)|
|Size/Weight||43 x 25.4 x 10.99mm / 18g|
Huawei Band 6 Review – Performance
Getting the Huawei Band 6 up and running requires you to jump through a few modest hoops. Out of the box, you’ll need to first pair it with the Huawei Health app which comes installed by default on Huawei phones like the recently released Mate40 Pro and the P40 Pro.
The app can also be found for free on the Google Play store and Apple app store which means that you’re not strictly limited to Huawei phones to use it.
You’ll first have to give it a few basic bits of personal information like gender, height, age and weight so that it can offer a modicum of fitness goals for you to aspire to but from there on in, it’s all up to you. Once paired, it’ll automatically download any necessary updates and from there on in, it’s ready to go.
The band proved comfortable to wear throughout the course of a week and the strap has a much higher number of watch strap holes than the norm, allowing me to get a better fit on my wrist which is necessary for more accurate heart rate and blood oxygen tracking.
Sleep tracking mode is exceptionally full featured and accurate to boot. It was able to track my sleeping patterns, or lack thereof over the course of several weeks and it managed to note a divergence in sleeping patterns as well as a notable drop in deep and REM sleep. It’s all not just random trivia as the paired Huawei Health app gives useful tips to improve sleep quality.
Activity tracking was on par with other fitness bands and it was able to accurately track steps taken compared to a conventional pedometer and measure heart rate and blood oxygen.
When it comes to fitness tracking, we put it through several walks around the block and a short run around the neighbourhood. The Band 6 lacks an integrated GPS and instead relies on your phone’s GPS for positioning data and after your run, it depicts a map of where you’ve been prancing around.
Needless to say, the ongoing pandemic means that access to a swimming pool and for the matter more extensive fitness equipment or venues isn’t an option so we weren’t able to test those modes. Route tracking was accurate though contingent upon your phone.
Huawei Band 6 – Is this worth buying?
At RM219, the Huawei Band 6 is significantly cheaper than dedicated fitness tracking watches though it’s slightly pricier than the lowest end fitness bands on account of more features, heart and Sp02 monitoring and a larger AMOLED screen.
Over the course of our Huawei Band 6 review, it made an impression on account of offering two weeks of battery life, a robust 5ATM case and excellent activity tracking functionality. It’s well worth a look for those seeking a quality fitness band.
Huawei Band 6 Review unit courtesy of Huawei Malaysia. Available for purchase online at https://shop.huawei.com/my/product/huawei-band-6
Huawei Band 6
Huawei Band 6
The Huawei Band 6 offers a robustly made and water resistant case with two weeks of battery life. Add in good sleep and activity tracking and you have a fairly priced and competent activity tracker.
Large display for price
Good fitness and sleep tracking functionality
Long battery life
Better looking watch screens not free
No storage for additional apps