Chinese smartphone maker Huawei is not giving up on smartwatch just yet. The Shenzhen-headquartered company says it is not giving up on smartwatches and plans to introduce new models with improved battery life soon.
Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei’s Consumer Business Group, told Digital Trends that the company wants to improve its smartwatch offering and has hence stayed quiet on future product developments. Huawei Watch, the first smartwatch from the company based on Google’s wearable platform, was a hit among those looking to buy a premium smartwatch with circular watch face. The company refreshed that model with Huawei Watch 2 last year but the update did not work as well as the original Huawei Watch in terms of sales. Huawei Watch 2 launched in early 2017 received a minor refresh early this year but the company aims to do better.
“Today we have two days battery life. I hope to have one running for a week. We want much better performance, and more usability. We cannot increase the battery size, because the watch will become too big,” Yu told Digital Trends in an interview.
Smartwatches were launched as the next big product segment after smartphones by a large number of brands. However, they did not quite resonate with consumers, who considered them as just another device to charge and their steep entry price did not help either. However, the biggest concern for most consumers is the battery life and Huawei considers it as one of its top concern as well.
Yu adds that building smartwatches with days long battery life remains at the top priority for the company. In the past few months, Samsung has launched its Galaxy Watch based on Tizen OS, which claims to offer up to 6 days while Mobvoi has launched Ticwatch Pro which runs Wear OS and has an hybrid display to save battery.
Watch: Samsung Galaxy Watch First Look
Huawei has been rumored to be building its own operating system optimized for its Kirin CPU in the past. While Yu did not outline company’s plans for such a device, he added that there is a need for a new chipset. He claims to have had a word with Qualcomm to design a new chip that deliver better battery life. Qualcomm is set to make a new announcement around wearables on September 10.
Huawei might announce a new wearable based on Wear OS and Qualcomm’s newest chipset if it sees significant gain in battery life. With LG and Motorola having given up on wearables, Huawei holding its ground should help Google sell the idea of its Wear OS.