But since we now know that it's staying sporty and adding features like an eSim into the mix, we thought we'd put our heads together to come up with what we think Huawei should do on its next real upgrade. A geomagnetic sensor is nice for the outdoorsy types, but it feels quite minor.
Because hey, if the comments of its recent rotating CEOs are anything to go by, Huawei itself doesn't seem to have a clear idea at all.
Here are the future features we'd like to see on a Huawei Watch 3 – a smartwatch wish list of sorts. Let us know in the comments what you're itching to see next.
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Michael Sawh – Editor
I think this might a common theme from the entire team, but I'd really like Huawei to go back to that luxury design approach it adopted for its first smartwatch. Or at least offer it as an option this time. Even as a sporty smartwatch, I didn't really have a lot of time or love for the Huawei Watch 2's pretty uninspiring look. Huawei clearly has the ability to make an attractive smartwatch and has done a better job of it than other tech companies that have made them.
I'd also like to see something a bit different on the software front. I know that all Wear watches are restricted to an extent by Google's operating system, but if you look at some of the most recent Fossil watches and even Louis Vuitton's Tambour Horizon Wear watch with the little extras they've added, there is clearly the opportunity to offer something different with Wear. If I had to pick one of these things to happen, it's the design change though that would be top of my list.
Sophie Charara – Associate editor
It seems to me that we have a pretty good idea what we think smartwatches should be now – stylish, customisable, fitness and wellbeing focused, with useful sensors and NFC payments and the option for standalone via LTE. And sure Huawei could come out with a specced up, shiny version of this – spoiler alert, it has – but isn't everyone forgetting something?
Battery life on smartwatches is still super annoying. Tech companies make out like it's no big deal to charge a connected watch every day or two – they're taking that assumption from smartphone behaviour. But the fact is we're already charging our phones everyday. This just means a second device we have to charge all the time.
Now, the Watch 2 gives you two days with 4G, three days without, which is already probably the best on Wear OS watches. One reviewer of Huawei's latest phone though, the P20 Pro (more on that from Husain below), said its battery "defies belief" so it's clearly capable of more. Do that, but for smartwatches. Come back to me with seven days. Then that will force everyone else to play.
Hugh Langley – US editor-at-large
I often bemoan the lack of compelling Wear OS smartwatches, despite an abundance of options, but the Huawei Watch 2 is easily one of the best – simply by virtue of how much Huawei managed to cram inside it. It puts a lot of other smartwatches to shame. Granted, it didn't look or feel as traditionally classic as the first, but it was a trade-off for sportier features. I'd like to see Huawei offer two version of the Watch 3 – one sporty, one fashion-y – to cover its bases.
Assuming Huawei's new smartwatch arrives when the next "wave" of Wear OS watches hits later in the year, running on the new Qualcomm chips, Huawei will be perfectly positioned to deliver a more capable smartwatch. I'm not convinced the fashion brands are all going to start cramming in features like LTE out the gate, but I'd like to see Huawei give its new smartwatches a cellular connection.
Those seem pretty reasonably asks – onto the batshit ideas. Remember Huawei thought up a way to let you interact with the watch by performing gestures on the back of your hand? I kinda want to see that. It goes against all my inhibitions, but I'm interested to see Huawei give it a go on the Watch 3. God knows the smartwatch space needs a bit more innovation, and I'd love for Huawei to just throw this out there as an optional extra. Don't act like you wouldn't try it.
Husain Sumra – Contributing editor
There's nothing I want more from the Huawei Watch 3 than for the company to swing for the fences. I want it to get big and ambitious, just as it did for the P20 Pro. The first step is a great specs sheet – let's get the latest and greatest Qualcomm Snapdragon in there. Let's also get all those sensors from the upcoming Huawei Watch 2 2018.
But most importantly, let's get a brilliant display. Huawei knows how to make vivid and saturated displays that can stand right up next to Apple and Samsung. The Huawei Watch 2 didn't have a bad screen, it had one of the crispest we've seen on a Wear OS, but I want to see Huawei go full out excellent.
Similarly, I'd love to see Huawei do something crazy in design. One of the disappointing things about the Huawei Watch 2 is that it went for a sporty, less charming look than the more elegant Huawei Watch 1. Why can't Huawei take a big swing and go for a design that works both in sporty situations and more classier ones? A nice universal design that can split the balance.
Heck, why not bring over that multicolour look from the P20 Pro (are you sensing a theme here?). Huawei just needs to go for it, aiming to make the most eye-catching watch it can. Something with a complete vision that isn't some half-measure aimed at a specific audience.
Conor Allison – Contributing editor
There's no reason why a company of Huawei's stature couldn't go big with its third generation. But after seeing the leaks for the Watch 2 2018, the thing I really want to see from the company is a bit of ambition. I've already talked at length about how I don't think Huawei really gets smartwatches, but that's not because the Watch 2 was a relegation Wear OS device. Far from it, actually – but it's true that it would benefit the company to veer off the path it appears to be on.
That means the Huawei Watch 3 needs to offer more options within design, whether through two separate versions, as Hugh suggests, or simply through a strong set of customisable bands. It also means swinging for the champ, the Apple Watch, and providing a similarly complete experience through the likes of LTE and music streaming, while one-upping it in battery life and with features like sleep tracking. If it doesn't, you can bet Google (and maybe even Samsung, if the rumours turn out to be true) will create a more compelling Wear experience later this year that leaves it in the dust.