Honor Band 6 assessment: simply what a health tracker needs to be

Honor Band 6 review: just what a fitness tracker should be

“It’s exactly what a good fitness tracker should be – inexpensive, not too big, and with an emphasis on full health monitoring features and some welcome extras.”

  • Compact and light

  • Excellent sleep tracking

  • Useful smartwatch-like notifications

  • Very affordable

  • USA import only

  • No always on the screen

It’s probably best to think of the Honor Band 6 not as a simple fitness tracker as it counts more than just your steps, but for a lot less money than a smartwatch. All of the health monitoring sensors and technology you’d expect are inside, and Honor has added some smartwatch-like features, just like the Honor Watch ES. Does this make the Honor Band 6 a desirable hybrid device or is it a messy amalgamation that doesn’t really know what it’s supposed to be? I found out.

design

The Honor Band 6 is shaped like the Honor Watch ES, only smaller and less complicated, and that does it just right. The Honor Band 6’s plastic case features a 1.47-inch touchscreen on the front, a single button on the right, and Honor branding on the left. It’s chunkier than the Samsung Galaxy Fit 2, but because it’s very light, it’ll never bother your wrist. Despite the taller 11mm profile, I’ve worn it with shirts and overnight without any problems, and there are plenty of holes in the fixed strap to make adjustment easier.

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There are three colors available – black, gray, and pink – but the incognito black or gray goes best with this. It’s not particularly stylish, but because it’s not too strenuous, it’s not offensive to the eye. All the time I wore it, I didn’t want to hide it under my sleeve out of embarrassment, but I didn’t want to show it off either. Most of the time, I’ve forgotten it’s there until somehow it reminds me.

The small, simple body comes closer to a traditional fitness tracker and so much the better.

It may not sound like it, but that’s a compliment. Honor’s decision to bring Band 6 closer to the smartwatch and further away from a simple fitness band was a risky one. The design can quickly become overwhelmed and in the end it doesn’t serve anyone very well. That’s what happened with the Watch ES, but the Band 6’s small, simple body gets closer to a traditional fitness tracker and so much the better.

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The screen is a winner. The 194 x 368 pixel resolution makes it sharp enough to be viewed and read comfortably, the thin bezels keep it from looking cheap, and it’s very responsive and easy to press because of its well-assessed size. Unfortunately, there is no screen available so either press the button or the screen to activate it, or raise your wrist. Gesture recognition is quick and accurate, but it’s annoying that the screen doesn’t wake up automatically to show notifications when they arrive.

Using the Honor Ribbon 6

The Honor ribbon 6 does the design of a hybrid fitness tracker right, but what about the functionality? With its big screen, the Honor Band 6 has more smartwatch features than you can expect at this price point. I hooked it up to an Apple iPhone 12 Pro using the Huawei Health app and it has proven to be reliable at showing notifications even though there is no way to interact with them. However, the text shown is clear and extensive. It has a variety of general features including the weather, a stopwatch, a timer, and the ability to ping your phone if it’s misplaced.

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The focus remains on fitness. It’s not that drastically different from Honor Fitness Bands that I’ve tried before, but that’s not a negative. There are 10 different training modes – including running, walking, biking, swimming, rowing, and elliptical training, plus a free training mode – for indoor and outdoor use that covers all common basics. However, the list looks anemic alongside fitness products from Amazfit, which often have more than 100 different training modes. The question is how often do you go climbing, surfing, or kayaking? If the answer is never, then the Honor Band 6’s 10 modes will likely be just fine.

The Band 6 recognizes workouts automatically or can be started manually in a very short time. The menu is navigated by swiping and tapping, while the physical button on the side of the case acts as the home and back button. It’s smooth and fast, and I had no problem controlling the Honor Band 6 on my wrist.

Data-rich exercise records are displayed on the watch. Distance, pace, speed, cadence, steps, step and heart rate are recorded during a walk and presented in an easy-to-read format. It’s annoying that these records on my iPhone couldn’t always be easily synced to Huawei Health, making it difficult to build historical trends.

Health traits

In addition to normal fitness tracking, the Honor Band 6 measures heart rate, blood oxygen content (SPO2) and stress. It also tracks sleep and has an app for breathing exercises. You can choose to have constant heart rate and stress monitoring, but the SPO2 values ​​must be recorded manually. How do the results of the Honor Band 6 compare to the Apple Watch Series 6?

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I recorded a 55 minute workout with both of them. The Honor Band 6 claimed I took 3,058 steps and burned 417 kilocalories with an average heart rate of 120 beats per minute. The Apple Watch showed I took 5,738 steps and burned 380 kcal with an average heart rate of 122 beats per minute. Throughout my use, the Honor Band 6 has underestimated the number of steps compared to the Apple Watch. The difference is significant, but it may not affect overall health statistics as heart rate and calorie expenditure are very similar.

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Blood oxygen measurements are taken quickly, and the results are consistent with those from the Apple Watch. The usefulness of the feature outside of sleep tracking or mountaineering is questionable, but it’s always good to have more health-related data to spot any discrepancies. The Honor Band 6 also has a menstrual cycle tracker.

Sleep tracking is excellent and Huawei TruSleep is one of the best systems I’ve used. The automatic sleep detection is very precise and correctly assesses my sleep and wake times on most days, even if I don’t get out of bed immediately. The data provided is detailed – duration, stages, and breathing – and assigns a sleep score with guidance on how to improve your sleep patterns.

Honor ribbon 6 rating sleep

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Honor Ribbon 6 Rating Huawei Health App

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Honor Band 6 Review Huawei Health App Notifications

Andy Boxall / Digital Trends

The combination of all of these statistics helps build a complete picture of your overall health with minimal financial outlay. The Huawei Health app shows all the collected data in a clear and precise way. The Huawei Health app is available for iOS and Android. It’s easy to set up and sync, and the app provides plenty of information and ways to customize the clock with different watch faces.

Battery life

Honor claims the Band 6 battery will last 14 days before it needs to be charged. However, this is either optimistic or it depends on when all features are turned off. During my time with it, the battery has dropped about 10% every day when using heart rate and stress monitoring and tracking my sleep. If you add a workout every other day, you get a maximum of 10 days of one fee. That’s still decent, but not what Honor says.

Price and availability

The Honor Band 6 is available in the UK for £ 45 / US $ 62 through Amazon. Although Honor stated that Band 6 would come to the US through their own online store, it has not yet done so, so US buyers will have to use an import service. For example, it’s $ 52 on AliExpress.

Our opinion

I found the Honor Band 6 very easy to live with and its wide range of features is useful. It is crucial that it is not overwhelmed with pointless features like the Watch ES’s personal trainer or a clunky design. It maintains the simplicity of a regular fitness tracker while integrating an attractive screen and simple but helpful smartwatch-style functions. Trying to be everything to everyone is usually not a good product, and the Honor Band 6 makes the right mix.

It has just the right level of complexity when it comes to health monitoring, with easy-to-use features (some of which are automated) and enough sensors to provide an informative view of your daily health. It won’t satisfy the hardcore athlete, but it’s more than enough for ordinary people. This is the Honor Band 6’s strong point – it does what a good fitness tracker should do without messing up with features that don’t matter at this price point.

Honor hasn’t raised the price above $ 100 either, which is where smartwatches appear that look like watches. Instead, it’s the kind of fitness tracker you should buy instead of the mostly terrible cheap smartwatches you can find on Amazon. It’s a different world than them in terms of build, polish, and performance. Availability is the only thing that troubles the Honor Band 6, but if you’re ready to make the effort, it’s definitely worth it.

Is there a better alternative?

The Honor Band 6 is very affordable, and it’s difficult to find a competing fitness tracker with the same features for the same price. The $ 50 Samsung Galaxy Fit 2 is our affordable fitness tracker. It’s not as feature-rich as the Honor Band 6, but it’s more readily available.

Outside of the US, the Xiaomi Mi Band 6 will likely be the biggest competitor as it offers very similar features. While the final price has not yet been confirmed, it will likely cost about the same as the Honor Band 6.

How long it will take?

The plastic housing, the strong silicone band and the water resistance of 5 ATM ensure that the Honor Band 6 does not break so quickly. Even if treated roughly, it should prove to be durable. Provided the software is kept up to date and the Huawei Health app is supported, the Honor Band will last 6 years.

Should you buy it?

Yes. The Honor Band 6 is an affordable, feature-packed fitness tracker that also manages to take advantage of some helpful smartwatch-like features.

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