OnePlus has managed to create a beautiful watch with an emphasis on display quality, connectivity, battery life, and fast charging. But the decision to go for its own software to sync the watch with a lesser-known OnePlus Health mobile app may need to be reconsidered. Beyond looks, software is the key to making any laptop shine. And creating good software takes time. After using the OnePlus Watch for a while, here is our review.
WATCH VIDEO: OnePlus Watch Quick Overview
OnePlus Watch: Design and Display
The OnePlus watch has a stainless steel case and measures 46mm. This watch is heavy but not bulky. In addition, the steel case gives the watch a premium and rugged appearance. On the right side there are two buttons to help you navigate the interface. The workmanship is quite good, with no sharp edges or unnecessary protrusions.
In India, you will only be able to choose between the Midnight Black and Moonlight Silver variants. But note that both are only available in 46mm. It could be a problem for people with thinner wrists because it looks too big. Additionally, you will need to tighten the strap so that the watch lies flat on the wrist so that it does not wobble a lot. There is no Corning Gorilla Glass protection and the steel case does not protrude out the sides of the screen. Care should therefore be taken to avoid a cracked screen.
The OnePlus watch offers a silicone strap with a pin mechanism as you see on the Apple Watch. Interestingly, OnePlus didn’t go for a buckle system, not least because the brand wanted the device to look like a traditional analog watch. The band is soft, comfortable, and easy to keep clean.
As for the display, you get a 1.39 inch HD AMOLED panel. The screen is bright with good color reproduction. Readability in sunlight is decent with a pixel density of 326 ppi. The touchscreen is responsive and there is no noticeable lag when navigating this screen. But there is a huge round bezel that you have to hide with a dark colored dial. In fact, it looks like the bezel itself prompted OnePlus to go for a 46mm case.
When it comes to watch faces, you’re limited to the OnePlus Health app only. There are enough watch face options out there, but you can’t customize and third-party watch faces aren’t supported.
You don’t get an always-on display, and you can set the screen timeout to a maximum of 60 seconds. This means that you will have to tap the screen to take a look at the time or activate the “Raise to Wake” option in the settings. With this function, as soon as you turn your wrist, the display lights up.
Overall, it’s a well-made watch, but there’s not much in the design that sets the OnePlus Watch apart from the crowd. And not to offend anyone, but this watch might look too big on the wrists of most women and even men in India.
OnePlus Watch: Specifications
The OnePlus Watch offers essential sensors to monitor heart rate, blood oxygen, sleep, stress, activity and more. There is also a barometer and a compass. The training modes include walking, jogging, running, marathon, outdoor cycling, indoor cycling, free training, swimming, among others. OnePlus is expected to roll out more training modes later. You can take the OnePlus watch for a swim as it is IP68 dust and water resistant and has a 5ATM rating. The OnePlus Watch covers all the features available with other devices in its price range.
The device is accurate enough to measure key parameters such as heart rate and SpO2, as well as calories and workouts. You can take calls and the audio quality is okay. Remember that this watch should always be connected to your phone. You’ll get notifications on your wrist, but there’s not much you can do. It is just an extension of your phone and cannot replace your phone in any way.
OnePlus also has a TV connection feature. This helps OnePlus TV owners to control the TV with the watch. We were unable to test this feature because we did not have a OnePlus TV at the time of this review.
OnePlus Watch: software and performance
The OnePlus watch works with the OnePlus Health app. From setup to daily operation, you will need to use this app. The watch only works with Android phones and is not compatible with iPhones. OnePlus does not use Google’s WearOS and the watch is running RTOS software. Considering the mundane experience of using WearOS, we’re not complaining at all. However, you won’t be happy with the OnePlus Health app. There aren’t a lot of “health details” present on the app and it’s pretty buggy. Sometimes the app tends to crash for no reason and the data may not always be saved to the app.
The watch works well and keeps all of its promises, but the experience is not complete enough. OnePlus needs to improve on the software side to meet “flagship killer” expectations – something the brand is proud of. The device connects easily via Bluetooth, but you may witness cases where the connection disconnects on its own.
Read more: Fossil Gen 5E review
OnePlus watch: battery life
OnePlus boasts that the device lasts 14 days on a full charge. But we could get about six days of battery life. Much depends on how you use the watch. If you watch SpO2 and heart rate a lot and tend to exercise, you will achieve a maximum of about five days. Fortunately, OnePlus offers fast charging and the device charges quickly. One hour of charge per week should be enough for most users.
The new OnePlus watch is a stylish wearable device that stands out with its design. Performance and construction wise too, the watch will impress users. However, OnePlus needs to work on its software to deliver an improved experience, and the OnePlus Health app needs major updates as well. There is no doubt that this is a bold attempt at OnePlus, but considering the price, features, and the overall experience, the OnePlus Watch is not convincing enough.