Huawei TalkBand B2 Review

Huawei Wear app

The new Huawei Wear app is basic as they come when it comes to fitness tracking.

Dissecting the data acquired by the TalkBand B2 requires the use of the free Huawei Wear app, which is available for Android and iOS devices – sorry Windows Phone owners! This particular one replaces the TalkBand app from last year. The new Huawei Wear app by itself is a standalone hub that aggregates the data gathered from the unit, broken up into two categories; fitness and sleep. Don’t think for a moment it’s going to be a comprehensive thing, like the Fitbit app, seeing that this one is as basic as they come.

Beyond showing us how many steps we’ve taken, the amount of calories burned, and the amount of sleep we managed to get, the data can be viewed in a daily or monthly format. And that’s about it in terms of what it has to offer. There’s no food tracking option, nor is there GPS information regarding workouts, so it’s as basic as it goes when it comes to fitness tracking. While it’s able to sync up steps properly, we’ve come across a buggy issue using the iOS app – where it sometimes doesn’t sync sleeping times properly.

Connectivity


In our review, we paired the Huawei TalkBand B2 with an iPhone 6 Plus. The process, much like any other Bluetooth enabled device, is a simple one that requires placing the unit into pairing mode and then connecting it. From our experience, the connection is maintained up to 20 feet. What’s nice, though, is that there’s an option for a disconnection reminder – so once the connection is severed, our phone reminds us that it’s lost.

Supplementing that is the feature of being able to ping our phone using the TalkBand B2. Essentially, if we somehow misplace our phone, we can send a ping from the unit to the phone, so we’re able to track it down – just as long as the Bluetooth connection is still there, obviously.

Performance

Great for the convenience of being a fitness tracker and Bluetooth headset, it’s not particularly a strong performer with either.

On the fitness side, the TalkBand B2’s 6-axis motion sensor is intelligent enough to distinguish what kind of movement we’re doing – whether it’s walking, running, or biking. In most cases, it’s able to differentiate between them all, but every now and then, it mistakes us driving in a car with running.

Thanks to its touchscreen display, it’s nice being able to glance at our daily totals without the need of relying on the app – it’s just so convenient! The subtle animations that run when viewing the various panes are a nice touch, but we would’ve like an option to view the results from previous days. Still, there’s a dedicated workout mode for running that breaks things down even more to tell us our pace, time, and distance covered.

Tracking our sleep is made better because it’s automatic, so there’s no need to set it into the mode – that’s one less painless thing to remember. From what we can gather using the app, it’s able to tell us the amount of deep and light sleep we get, and roughly how long it takes us to fall asleep.

Battery
Four days of use isn’t that bad for a fitness tracker.

Using it primarily as a fitness tracker, with a few occasions using it for phone calls, the TalkBand B2’s 95 mAh battery gets us a little over 4 days of use. That’s not too bad for a combinational device, but it’s not class-leading for a fitness tracker. Compared to last year’s unit, it’s a step back because that one was able to achieve 6 days of use. Luckily, it features a microUSB port for quick and easy charging, which is slapped on the underside of the unit.

Conclusion


We won’t deny that it’s fantastic that the Huawei TalkBand B2 combines a fitness tracker and Bluetooth headset into one product, it’s just convenient and eliminates the need to purchase and carry on with us two products. Plus, it new premium and stylish design is an attractive new direction that we dig – made better with its water and dust resistant construction.

Pricing stands at $179 for the Huawei TalkBand B2, a price that’s higher than most of the popular fitness trackers out there right now, but bear in mind that this also doubles as a Bluetooth headset. Just like last year’s unit, however, the TalkBand B2 doesn’t really excel in either categories. As a fitness tracker, it’s as basic as they get, and as a Bluetooth headset, there are some challenges using it in noisy environments. And finally, the Huawei Wear app is just limited in what it offers.

Regardless of those shortcomings, the new premium design continues to enthrall, and just recently, a new partnership with Jawbone allows TalkBand B2 users to send their fitness data to the Up Smart Coach app, which is by far a more complex, powerful, and intuitive all-in-one fitness solution for hardcore fitness buffs. Go with the TalkBand B2 is you love its beautiful design and the convenience factor of what it offers, but serious fitness folks might want to look elsewhere.



Pros

  • Premium and stylish design
  • Convenience factor of being a two-in-one device
  • Display blends into the unit’s design
  • Automatic sleep mode
  • Water & dust resistant construction

Cons

  • Weak volume makes it tough to use as a headset
  • Requires some tinkering to find the proper fit in the ear
  • Basic data tracking with the Huawei Wear app
  • Some minor bugs with the iOS Huawei Wear app

PhoneArena Rating:

7.0

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10 Comments

1. gaming64 unregistered

Microsoft Band FTW. Period.

2. Kruze

Posts: 1285; Member since: Dec 30, 2014

I like this Talkband B2 more. IMO, Microsoft Band looks cheap and boring in terms of design.

6. waddup121 unregistered

swagband!

3. Tizo101

Posts: 545; Member since: Jun 05, 2015

would have liked to buy this but for me it's still too expensive.

4. sergiobr

Posts: 718; Member since: Feb 25, 2013

Finally ! Something innovative and useful in mobile word ! The mobile world is getting boring !

7. gaming64 unregistered

This is part of the mobile world. It's a "mobile device". *sigh*

8. sergiobr

Posts: 718; Member since: Feb 25, 2013

m$ looser

5. carlemillward unregistered

Huawei is good with designs, but I am still upset that they decided to move away from the signature C curve which they highly emphasized about. Now their P8 looks a bit generic.

9. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Good design.

10. TamaraD

Posts: 6; Member since: May 10, 2016

I was interested in B3 and used Google translation to get more technical information about it from Chinese sites. It says B3 uses "professional audio technology" from Alango. English sites reviewing B3 do not provide this information. Can someone comment on it? Can this technology be used in other products?

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