From affordable fitness bands to luxury smartwatches, wearables come in all shapes and sizes for every need. Yet, the Android ecosystem had no smartwatch that could be as reliable, intriguing and feature-rich as Apple Watch for iPhones. Well, not until now.
The recently launched OPPO Watch seems for the Android ecosystem a smartwatch as good as the Apple Watch. Based on Google’s WearOS platform, the OPPO Watch is compatible with most Android devices. Though the WearOS has not fundamentally improved for ages, OPPO has done a commendable job to build a smartwatch that seems married to the operating system and brings forward the OS strengths in a way not explored before.
Is OPPO Watch the smartwatch the Android ecosystem needed? Let’s find out:
OPPO Watch: Design
The OPPO Watch (46mm) seems to have taken inspiration from the Apple Watch (review) in more ways than one. Though its design seems inspired by the Apple Watch, it does not look like a cheap imitation. It looks like a new iteration that might not be unique in its own right, but is fresh nonetheless. The OPPO Watch’s case is made of 6000-series aluminium with reinforced glass at the top and ceramic heart rate sensor at the bottom. For ease of use, there are two programmable buttons on the right side of the frame. These buttons improve usability without adding any distraction to the OPPO Watch’s seamless design. On the left side, there is a loudspeaker. Its muted output, however, does not add much to the utility besides the fact that you can attend calls on the move without taking the phone out from your pocket.
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OPPO Watch: Display
At the top, the OPPO Watch has a side-curved glass covering the two-side curved flexible OLED display. It is a 1.91-inch display of a 402 x 476 resolution which makes it one of the most pixel-rich displays available on any smartwatch. The display is bright, vivid and responsive. Its side-curved profile feels natural to use with WearOS gesture-based navigation. Moreover, the OS seems optimised for the Watch’s display. It shows most of the information in the centre area, leaving the display’s curved sides empty. This way, you interact with the on-screen content without accidently tapping anywhere while navigating through the user interface (UI).
OPPO Watch: Features and performance
The OPPO Watch is a feature-rich product in the smartwatch segment. It is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 3100 system-on-chip, and boots WearOS with value-added features added by OPPO. The OPPO Watch works like any other WearOS-powered smartwatch yet feels different and intriguing because of the cleverly implemented OPPO customisation. For example, the app listing area looks more like what we are accustomed to seeing on OPPO smartphones. Similarly, the quick settings area looks ColorOS-inspired with the same grey and green colour accents for disabled and activated settings, respectively.
Besides improving the look and feel, OPPO has added customisation aid the the watch’s performance, too. It is swift in operations and does not seem to slow down after extended use. It responds quickly to wrist gestures and loads apps in no time. Moreover, swiping gestures work smoothly. We did not find any instance when the watch miscalculated any gesture, so it is accurate too.
For fitness enthusiasts, the OPPO Watch bring several features and performs well within its scope of things. Being part of the Google ecosystem, the Watch gets exercise- and sport-tracking features from Google Fit. Complementing the smartwatch-smartphone synergy is OPPO’s HeyTap Health app, which shows the watch’s statistics and health and fitness-related information at one place. The app also brings additional workout routines that you miss out in the Google Fit. From starters to pro users, there is a whole bouquet of fitness routines available on the OPPO Watch. Importantly, these features are not cosmetic but functional and the watch’s health and fitness performance holds up well.
On-battery time is questionable as the Watch could not keep up for more than 10 hours when used as a smartwatch and a fitness companion. It, however, stays on battery power for a day if you use it in discipline. Thankfully, there are a couple of battery profiles that let you get the most out of the battery. But you lose some functionality to gain some extra on-battery time. Charging time is decent and the OPPO Watch’s battery replenishes from completely drained to 100 per cent in over an hour. But there is no wireless charging here and one needs to carry the supplied charger everywhere.
OPPO Watch review: Verdict
Priced at Rs 19,990 (46mm Black variant – Wi-Fi), the OPPO Watch is an obvious choice if you need a smartwatch with both style and substance. It works great as a smartwatch and a fitness companion. Moreover, its design has a touch of novelty (side-curved display) that looks unlike any other smartwatch, including the Apple Watch. While everything is good about the OPPO Watch, its on-battery time and lack of wireless charging support set bit back a few notches if you compare it with Samsung smartwatches. The OPPO Watch is undoubtedly the best WearOS smartwatch, but not the best smartwatch you get for Android smartphones.