MWC 2015: Huawei Unveils Android Smartwatch, Does It Stand A Chance Against Apple Watch?


2015 seems to be the year of stylish wearables as smartphone manufacturers make a foray into smartwatches. Huawei, too, has hopped on the smartwatch bandwagon, unveiling its "Huawei Watch" at Mobile World Congress 2015 in Barcelona, Spain.

While the Huawei Watch may not get any brownie points for naming creativity, the first-ever Android Wear-powered wearable from the China-based company is high on the style quotient.

"Through Huawei's continued commitment to 'Make It Possible,' the Huawei Watch delivers on that promise and gives the consumer a premium smartwatch that is technologically innovative," noted Richard Yu, CEO, Huawei Consumer Business Group

Yu also added that the smartwatch was "designed and created to enhance and be part of the consumer's everyday lives."

The Huawei Watch may feature a "timeless design" but can it throw back the gauntlet to Apple Watch, which is slated to make its debut on March 9?

The Huawei Watch's analog 1.4-inch AMOLED screen (400 x 400 resolution and 286ppi) is made of sapphire glass for scratch resistance. Usually, Android smartwatches use Corning's Gorilla Glass, so this is a nice upgrade. Sapphire glass will also be sturdier when compared with Gorilla Glass, which is required in a wearable that may be prone to scratches and rough use.

Huawei intends to retail its Huawei Watch with its 512 MB of RAM and 4 GB of storage in nearly 20 countries worldwide. The device, which is powered by a Snapdragon processor, packs in fitness tracking, heart-rate monitor, barometric sensor and a six-axis motion sensor. No details on the battery life or charging are available.

However, rivaling the Apple Watch may be a tough task for the Huawei Watch as, for starters, Android Wear may not be able to match up to the Apple Watch's operating system. Moreover, when it comes to color options, the Huawei offering will be available in three hues: silver, black and gold. By comparison, the Apple Watch will be available in a number of colors with leather bands, as well as in 18-carat yellow gold and rose gold. Therefore, if redefining luxury is the aim of the Huawei wearable, then it pales in front of the Apple Watch.

Apple will be releasing three collections in different casings to meet different budgets -- Sport Collection (aluminum), Watch Collection (stainless steel) and Edition Collection (gold). Huawei Watch is only available in stainless steel and the pricing could likely rival that of Apple's midrange offering.

Huawei may be making available nearly 40 customizable watch faces at the time of release, but it's anybody's guess if that would be enough to tide the company over. Moreover, with luxury Swiss watchmakers like Frederique Constant, Alpina, and Mondaine venturing into the smartwatch space with analog devices for both men and women, Huawei is in for some stiff competition.

The Huawei Watch is expected to release in June. The pricing is not known at this juncture.

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