Wellbeing is important.
So much is this the case that many of us are now looking after not just our diet, our approach to exercise and our wider nutrition levels – we are also looking after our stress levels, our anxiety meters and our total body ecosystem in ways that would have appeared excessive perhaps a could of decades ago.
With many smartwatches now offering stress and SpO2 peripheral oxygen saturation measurement functions, the next step was perhaps logical i.e. a smartwatch that would measure blood pressure.
Enterprise application use?
But would users actually want to measure their blood pressure on a daily (perhaps even hourly basis) and use that as an additional means of monitoring their state of mind?
The answer to that question is perhaps twofold: a) Huawei advises that users ‘do not self-diagnose yourself’ with this unit, but use it as a general guide and b) we found that wearing it does immediately provide you with a sense of additional personal care responsibility, almost like you have a mini doctor on your wrist – so it’s a bit of a balance both sides.
The unit itself offers a stress meter similar to those seen on other smartwatches, it also offers ECG analysis with a whole selection of exercise workout monitoring modes, so its use is clearly targeted as a health device, but also a fitness wearable.
According to Huawei, “The compact body of Watch D features built-in motion, heart rate sensor modules and a double-layer narrow air bag design. When the air bag is inflated, the inflated double-layer air bag will perfectly fit the arm. This results in better compression for a more accurate perception of changes in pulse pressure. The air bag is essential for pulse detection as it allows the device to transfer pressure.”
A full charge provides 7-days of battery life, which means day and night, the sleep tracker appears to be more accurate than some and it has the ability to segment light sleep from deep sleep from REM sleep – all of which records are viewable in the Huawei Health App… but we’ll come on to that in a moment.
The Watch D assesses sleep quality without disturbing the user’s sleep. Further, it automatically identifies the user’s optimum time to fall asleep and wake up, presenting a sleep analysis for sleep or sporadic naps. The smartwatch can also identify six types of typical sleep problems such as difficulty falling asleep, light sleep, easy waking up at night, early waking up, having too many dreams and irregular sleep schedule.
The device is IP68 certified against dust and water, so that means submersion in 1.5 metres of water for 30 minutes if we’re going by the book – it could therefore be used for swimming, but a sports watch might be more appropriate given that you’re not going to take your blood pressure in between lentgths.
The Watch D has a 1.64-inch AMOLED display and is available in Europe for around £350.
Setting up & syncing
The above-mentioned ‘air bag’ is the Watch D’s blood pressure ‘cuff’ that you might be more used to experiencing when a doctor takes your readings. It gets tight in just the way you would expect, it’s not painful and the whole process lasts less than 30 seconds.
Upon first unpacking, the watch performs a self-test to establish whether the user has the correct size wristband installed for their body size. This is quick and efficient and the fit is comfortable. It’s a little fiddly to work out how the clasp opens (it’s more pull across than pop off), but it’s easy to get used to.
Users will need to access the Huawei AppGallery and install the Health application to get the most out of the Huawei Watch D. That may present a challenge for users who have not enabled their devices to access apps from ‘unknown’ sources (speaking personally, I have been using Huawei Health for four years with no issues on other devices), so let’s check what the company has to say on this subject.
“Huawei AppGallery is designed to deliver a safe and secure user experience. Huawei AppGallery features a professional four-layer security system designed to detect malicious behaviour, facilitate privacy check and ensure app security.”
Is it safe to download apps from the AppGallery we asked?
The company clarifies further and states that, “Huawei AppGallery is designed to deliver a safe and secure user experience. Huawei AppGallery features a professional four-layer security system designed to detect malicious behaviour, facilitate privacy check and ensure app security.”
The Huawei Watch D features the company’s proprietary Huawei TruBP blood pressure algorithm, which is based on a cascade model and different blood pressure patterns.
This makes the device sensitive and considerate to a user’s needs, with smart measurement assistance, abnormal posture detection and other high-level capabilities.
Besides measuring its user’s pulse and blood pressure, Huawei Watch D allows its users to set customised measurement plans, based on which it will send out blood pressure reminders at scheduled times.