So over the years, smartwatches have gotten good—like really good! From advanced health tracking features to enhanced usability and everything in between, companies like Apple, Samsung, Fitbit, Garmin, and Huawei are on the top of their game in this arena. Adding to that list is Huawei’s new Watch GT 3. The company has always been one of the popular names in the wearable segment, so is this one among the best too? I will answer that question in this review of the Huawei Watch GT 3, so let’s dig right in.
Huawei Watch GT 3 Specifications:
|Dimensions||42.3 x 42.3 x 10.2 mm||45.9 x 45.9 x 11 mm|
|Weight||35 gm (without strap)||42.6 gm (without strap)|
|Strap||Black fluoroelastomer, Brown leather, Stainless steel||Black fluoroelastomer, White leather, Gold Milanese|
|Strap Size||20 mm (universal)||22 mm (universal)|
|Battery||292mAh (Up to 7 days)||455mAh (Up to 14 days)|
|Case Material||Stainless steel front, plastic rear|
|Memory||32MB RAM, 4GB internal storage|
|OS||Huawei HarmonyOS 2.0|
|Sensors||Accelerometer, Air Pressure, Gyroscope, Geomagnetic, Optical Heart Rate, Temperature|
|Health Tracking||24-hour heart rate, SpO2 monitoring, Sleep, Stress tracking, Women’s health|
|Sports Modes||100+ sports modes, Personal AI Running Coach|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth (Supports Bluetooth calling)|
|Audio||Built-in speaker, microphone|
|Navigation||Dual-band five-system GNSS (GPS, Beidou, Glonass, Galileo, QZSS)|
|Durability||5 ATM water resistance (waterproof up to 50m)|
|Compatibility||HarmonyOS 2 or later, Android 6.0 or later, iOS 9.0 or later|
|Companion App||Huawei Health (Android, HarmonyOS | iOS)|
|Price in Nepal||N/A||Rs. 36,990|
Huawei Watch GT 3 Review:
Design & Build
- Stainless steel frame
- 42/46 mm case (20/22 mm strap)
- 35/42.6 gm (without strap)
- 5 ATM water-resistant
In terms of design, this is by far one of the best-looking smartwatches I’ve used so far. I have the 46 mm variant with leather straps, while you can also get the “steel” variant that gives off a more sophisticated look instead. For those with a thinner wrist, there’s a 42 mm variant available as well.
But regardless of the size or strap options, this metal body—complemented by stainless steel frames—oozes premiumness. And despite its chunky look, the GT 3 is not heavy at all and is quite comfortable to wear.
Goes with all your outfit
In my opinion, the best design trait of this watch is the fact that even though it’s a smartwatch/fitness tracker hybrid, it does not necessarily look like one. It seamlessly goes with your everyday outfits and looks premium enough to wear to a party as well.
In any case, the stainless steel frames also house the metal crown on the top right and a customizable button right below it. The crown serves as a home button, while it can also take you to the apps section or let you scroll through menu items.
The other button, as I said, is customizable, so you can set it to trigger whatever function you please. By default, it brings out the exercise menu and I have left it as is. But you can set it to open the weather or measure heart rate and such. Moving on, the Watch GT 3 is 5 ATM rated against water damage up to 50 meters as well.
- 1.32/1.43-inches AMOLED panel
- Circular dial, Always on Display (AoD)
- No display protection
On to the display, things are equally impressive here. You’re getting a 1.43-inch AMOLED screen with 466/466-pixel density and minimal bezels on the larger 46mm model—while the 42 mm variant hosts a 1.32-inch display instead. Anyway, it’s a bright screen with rich contrast and amazingly fluid touch response.
Even outdoors, this screen is bright enough to view the time and your exercise records.
So if you are going for an outdoor run and want to check on how much distance you’ve traveled and stuff like that, visibility is not going to be a concern. There’s an auto-brightness feature too, but it’s not as seamless as I expected.
This is especially noticeable when the display doesn’t dim itself to match the ambient lighting when the screen is turned on. It can bump the brightness levels just fine but not the other way around unless you turn off the screen.
So many watch faces
On the other hand, the GT 3 also supports Always on Display—but I didn’t quite find the use for it since the raise-to-wake function works almost instantaneously. There are a good number of AOD options here in case you prefer it though. Like AOD, there’s a large selection of free and paid-for watch face options on the Huawei Health app as well.
And the good news is that you can store almost 100 of them on the watch itself. However, unlike many smartwatches out there, there’s no option to customize one on your own. Well, with the wide range of choices available, I am not particularly complaining—but it’s always good to have options!
Also, I am slightly disappointed by the fact that there isn’t any kind of glass protection for the display. Because of this, I already have one major and a few minor scratches on this thing!
Health, Fitness Tracking
- 24-hour heart rate, SpO2 monitoring, Sleep, stress tracking
- 100 sports modes, Personal AI Running Coach
Alright, on the usability side, there are things that have impressed me a lot—whereas I’m left wanting more on some other aspects. Let’s talk about the good stuff first. Compared to Huawei’s Watch 3 series that’s geared more towards luxury and premium looks, the Watch GT 3 prioritizes health and fitness tracking instead.
And for the most part, the company has definitely delivered in this regard. There are more than 100 goal-based exercise tracking options to choose from, including the standard ones like indoor/outdoor running and walking, yoga, pilates, and swimming—to several types of dances, kite flying, hiking, etc.
Now, I am mostly into outdoor running, hiking, walking, and yoga, where this watch was able to track all of these activities quite accurately. Plus, with its dual-band GNSS, it can deliver fairly precise positioning—especially when you are running outdoors or hiking. The watch also lets you set goals for individual exercises, set reminders if your heart rate goes above/below the set value, and more.
All-day SpO2 monitoring
Besides this, there are the usual health tracking features present here, like continuous heart rate and SpO2 monitoring—on top of sleep tracking and step, calorie counter. By the way, the continuous SpO2 monitoring is not turned on by default, leaving you with having to manually turn it on via the Huawei Health app.
But do note that the Watch GT 3 records your SpO2 levels once every 30 minutes only—just like the Huawei Band 6. I also checked its reading against an oximeter and the results from these two devices were—I would say—pretty neck-and-neck.
Likewise, there’s also a skin temperature sensor here. And I think it’s a very handy feature to have, especially during these COVID times. Also, I do have to mention that this is one of the few smartwatches that can track your sleep with incredible precision—all thanks to Huawei’s advanced TruSleep 2.0 algorithm.
I am someone who falls asleep the moment I fall on the bed and the GT 3 has been able to record the exact time I go to bed and wake up—on top of tracking my sleeping patterns. On a related note, all your fitness and exercise records are synced and can be viewed on a wider scale on the aforementioned Huawei Health app.
The app is available on the Google Play Store—but it hasn’t been updated in quite a long time, meaning it misses out on quite a few features. On the contrary, you’ll have to sideload it from the Huawei AppGallery to get the latest version.
Supports actionable notifications
I have been using this watch for more than a month now. And during this time, I have received almost 5 updates! One of the recent updates even enabled actionable notifications on messages, which was previously not possible.
But unlike WearOS-powered smartwatches, the Watch GT 3 only lets you reply with emojis and built-in short responses for now—although there is the option to customize the said responses.
Moreover, you can also make or receive calls via Bluetooth on this watch—with one little caveat. There’s no option to dial a number here—but you can add up to 10 favorite contacts on the Huawei Health app to make a call from the watch itself.
Or if someone has called you, it lets you redial the caller too.
Then again, there’s no standalone phone call support on the GT 3 because of the lack of cellular connectivity. How’s the call quality, you ask? Well, none of my frequent contacts have complained about it even when I am in a particularly noisy environment. On my end, the voices sound clear, so I have absolutely no complaint on this end.
The cons of a custom OS
Like I mentioned earlier, there are a few things that I wish were better though. The Huawei Watch GT 3 runs on HarmonyOS 2.0, which is basically a rebranded Lite OS with the ability to line up apps in a grid.
And because of the lack of Google Play Store support, you can’t use native Google apps like Maps or Messages here. Instead, Huawei’s AppGallery is where you’d find all the downloadable apps. But the option for third-party apps are pretty limited here—be it in terms of watch faces or fitness-related apps.
Also, this smartwatch is complemented by Huawei’s own voice assistant called “Celia”—although it only works with a Huawei phone. On the exercise tracking front, automatic workout detection didn’t work at all in my case, which is very inconvenient for me because most of the time, I forget to manually start recording the workout.
And if you own an iPhone, you won’t be able to sync the music files from your phone to the watch either. On Android phones, however, you can add songs and create a playlist. Surprisingly enough, the audio quality from the onboard speaker isn’t that bad. It gets fairly loud, and there’s a tinge of highs as well.
- 292/455mAh battery
- Up to 7/14 days battery life
- Wireless charging
Finally, something that is really commendable of the GT 3 compared to other premium smartwatches I have used like the Galaxy Watch 4, Apple Watch Series 6, and the Watch Series 7 is the battery life.
It lasted me for about 12 days straight even when keeping continuous heart rate monitoring on, using the GPS around 20-30 minutes a day during outdoor runs, and casually listening to music every once in a while. Then, I tested it with continuous SpO2 monitoring turned on as well—apart from everything I discussed above—and it still managed to give me around 8 days of backup.
Moving on, this watch charges wirelessly and my 46 mm variant with a 455mAh battery took about 3 hours to fully juice up. By the way, it also supports reverse wireless charging—but only with supported Huawei phones.
Huawei Watch GT 3 Review: Conclusion
After all this time with the Huawei Watch GT 3, I would say that it has grown on me. Before this, I had been using Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 4, which is a very capable smartwatch in itself. But ultimately, it was haunted by sub-par battery life. Yes, the GT 3 isn’t as powerful, and neither does it have support for cellular connection or Google Play Store. But that has enabled its battery to last much longer. And that’s something most users like me will certainly appreciate.
Plus, it does all the health and fitness tracking things right. As a result, this is a no-nonsense smartwatch that does practically everything a smartwatch should—while also looking incredibly stylish on the hands.
- Watch our video review of the Huawei Watch GT 3.
Huawei Watch GT 3 Review: Pros & Cons
- Premium design, build quality
- Bright, vibrant AMOLED display
- Excellent built-in GPS
- SpO2 monitoring is fairly reliable
- Decent call quality
- Terrific battery endurance
- No display protection
- Issue with automatic workout detection
- Limited third-party app support
- Some features restricted to Huawei phones