Honor says its new rugged smartwatch has 25-day battery life

At the same time, the company announced the Watch ES for workouts.

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Daniel Cooper
September 4th, 2020
Honor Watch GS Pro
Honor

Even the bulkiest smartwatches from major tech brands can have that slightly milquetoast vibe. Sure, they look butch when you’re in the office, but do you fancy risking it against the elements when you’re in the middle of nowhere? That’s the question Honor is hoping you want to answer with its new Watch GS Pro, designed for rugged urban explorers.

The GS Pro has a 1.39-inch round AMOLED display, a stainless steel bezel and a polycarbonate body. It’s got chunky, aggressive styling that screams to everyone that you may be familiar with camping. The company says that it’s passed 14 different tests for military specifications (810G) relating to water, shock and heat damage. 

For me, the biggest plus maybe the GS Pro’s claimed battery life, which is 25 days in normal mode, with 48 hours using GPS. You’ll get 100 hours in “outdoor workout mode” and the battery takes just two hours to charge. That’s the sort of battery life that, unless you already own a Garmin, will make you go weak at the knees. 

Naturally, the watch comes with a number of modes designed to support outdoorsy exercise types. That includes hiking, biking, mountain climbing and running, as well as a snowsports mode to help you track how you’re doing on the powder. Honor also said that the watch will keep a GPS breadcrumb trail on the watch to help you retrace your steps should you get lost. 

The watch offers 24/7 heart-rate tracking which, again, makes that battery life claim look even more impressive. There’s also a built-in SpO2 monitor for blood oxygenation monitoring as well as sleep and stress monitoring, not to mention live coaching for when you’re running. Rounding out the package is storage space for around 500 songs, automatic weather updates and the ability to use the watch as a remote trigger for your (compatible) smartphone’s camera.

Honor Watch ES
Honor

At the same time, the company revealed the Honor Watch ES, which aims to split the difference between a fitness tracker and a smartwatch. It packs a 1.64-inch, 456 x 280 (326 ppi) always-on AMOLED display and is designed to be a personal trainer on your wrist. Despite the battery-taxing screen, Honor claims that the ES will last for up to 10 days on a charge, which if true is very impressive.

At first blush, I’m instantly reminded of 2017-era fitness bands that tried to add on full-size AMOLED screens into that vertical body. You might recall the Samsung Gear Fit 2 Pro and Polar’s A370, where everything was crammed into a rectangle that sat across your wrist. It’s a lot lighter and thinner than those units, though, weighing just 21 grams without the strap and 10.7mm thick. 

Features include animated workout coaching designed to help you take advantage of “time fragments.” These are, according to Honor, bursts of three minutes while you wait for meetings to start or buses to arrive, into which you can cram in a super-short workout. The device has 44 individual animations to teach you proper form, as well as 95 different workout modes covering everything from running to open-water swimming. Plus, if you begin running, walking, rowing or using the elliptical, the watch will automatically recognize what you’re doing. 

As well as the usual activity tracking, the Watch ES offers 24/7 heart-rate and blood oxygenation tracking paired with stress and sleep monitoring. It’ll also offer menstrual cycle tracking, albeit only for people who use an Android phone with their new timepiece. 

The Honor Watch GS Pro is available in three colors: Black, White and Camo Blue, while the Watch ES ships in Black, Pink and White. The devices will be available in Europe on September 7th, with the GS Pro priced at €250 and the Watch ES setting you back €100.

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