MWC 2015: Huawei launches wearables and more
Chinese vendor introduces its first smartwatch, next-gen TalkBand devices
Chinese hardware manufacturer Huawei used Mobile World Congress 2015 to roll out a smartwatch and a Bluetooth-enabled health-tracker wristband.
The Huawei Watch features a 1.4-inch touch-sensitive AMOLED display, scratch-proof sapphire crystal lens and a cold-forged stainless steel frame. It comes with a built-in heart rate monitor and 6-Axis motion sensors and is also waterproof.
"We have responded to consumers' requests from around the world asking for a smartwatch featuring a timeless design that is truly smart from within," said Richard Yu, CEO, Huawei Consumer Business Group.
"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. As the first smartwatch in our expanding line of premium wearable products, the Huawei Watch was designed and created to enhance and be part of consumers' everyday lives."
Other Huawei wearables launched at MWC are the TalkBand B2 and TalkBand N1. Alongside the wearables, the company also introduced its "next-generation" phablet, the MediaPad X2.
The Middle East continues to be a high-growth market for Huawei with the company launching a number of flagship products, such as its Mate 7 smartphone, and naming singer Nancy Ajram as its Middle East & Africa brand ambassador.
Huawei pulled together a team of traditional watch designers for its Watch project, which resulted in use of sapphire crystal elements, and a metal body with a 316L corrosive-resistant, cold-forged stainless steel, which Huawei claims is "commonly only seen in luxury watches".
The wrist device runs Android Wear, and is peppered with health-tracking functions, a heartrate monitor sensor, 6-Axis sensor, barometer sensor, touch motor, and built-in microphone. Paired with a smartphone running Android 4.3 or higher, the watch allows users to receive SMS, email, calendar, app, and phone call notifications.
Continues on next page>>
The display has 400 x 400 resolution in 286 ppi at a 10,000:1 contrast ratio. Huawei claims the touch-sensitive sapphire crystal lens cover can work with gloved or wet hands.
Huawei Watch comes with 40 customisable watch faces ranging from classic analogue to digital, or a tracking design that displays health data, including calories ingested and steps taken. It comes in gold, silver and black with a range of materials, watch straps and other styles also available.
Huawei also launched a mini, which it claimed to be the "world's slimmest 7-inch phablet". The Huawei MediaPad X2 is 7.28 mm thick and offers a screen-to-body ratio of 80%. Huawei touted the MediaPad X2 as "the perfect all-in-one integrated companion, combining phone, tablet, navigator, portable battery, mobile hotspot and digital camera.
The X2's display is a laminated 7-inch ultra 1200 x 1920 HD IPS screen providing a resolution up to 323ppi and the device is powered by a 2.0GHz Kirin 930 ultra-octa chipset. It comes with a 13MP rear camera, designed for "exceptionally good low-light shooting capabilities". The camera design also includes a post-shooting focus adjustment metering mode; off-screen quick-snapping functionality; and a focus- and exposure-metering function. The 5MP front-facing camera has an aperture of F2.4 and a wide angle of 22mm.
Huawei also wheeled out the second generation of its TalkBand products. The TalkBand B2 is a combo of Bluetooth headset and health-tracker. The latest iteration is said to incorporate "smarter" fitness tracking functionality with "higher accuracy", and enhanced synchronisation with mobile devices.
"Inheriting a more superior Bluetooth connectivity than its predecessor, Huawei TalkBand B2 is not only a convenient health management device, but also the perfect combination of Bluetooth headset and sports bracelet, ideal for the on-the-run business executives who are athletically active," Huawei said in a statement.
"Equipped with an advanced 6-axis sensor, TalkBand B2's smart detection can automatically identify and record motions accurately, detect the duration of deep sleep and light sleep, and provide consumers with health tips on ways to improve their sleep pattern."
Continues on next page>>
TalkBand B2 also comes with dual-microphone, noise-reduction technology and smart detection to determine whether the Bluetooth earpiece is on the wristband or not, allowing it to automatically push audio to the smartphone or B2 bracelet. TalkBand B2 is also equipped with a pager to search and locate smartphones, regardless of the handset model, through vibration or ring tone alerts.
In addition to the B2, Huawei also launched the TalkBand N1, which it claimed is "the industry's first Hi-Fi stereo + Bluetooth headset featuring 4GB of local MP3 storage for 1,000 songs, Bluetooth calling, and sports tracking".
A 20-20KHz frequency range, and chamber tuning technology are aimed at delivering a high-end audio experience. The device also houses APTX Bluetooth transmission technology, in pursuit of "CD-quality" sound.
Paired with a smartphone, TalkBand N1 is also a health and sports tracker with functions that include step counting, distance calculation and calorie consumption tracking.