The new Huawei Watch D told us we had high blood pressure

IFA 2022: Trying out the Huawei Watch D with some surprising results
Huawei Watch D lands in Europe
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The Huawei Watch D has finally got the green light in Europe – and the company has also revealed it's now also got certification for its ECG feature.

The Huawei Watch D was launched in China earlier this year, and quietly shown off at a Huawei event in Milan back in May.

However, it’s been waiting for regulatory sign-off in Europe – and will now go on sale in October 2022. And we got the chance to try it out at IFA 2022.

The headline feature of the Huawei Watch D is blood pressure tracking. Unlike the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5, it doesn't need to be validated by a cuff, and that’s because the watch strap itself does the job.

The inside of the band fits a secondary strap, which inflates slightly just like the cuff of a normal blood pressure monitor.

Fire up the blood pressure tracking app, hold your arm in position (see below), and you'll feel the strap constrict around your wrist. After a few seconds, you’ll get the blood pressure reading on the screen.

Blood pressure reading

In full testing, we’ll be checking these results against a proper cuff, but the Watch D delivered a slightly elevated "high normal" reading in our demonstration. Hardly surprising, given the late nights and hectic days running around at IFA, but it's something I'll certainly be keeping an eye on.

And perhaps this perfectly illustrates how useful on-demand blood pressure tracking can be. Finding a slightly elevated reading is a great way to be mindful about stress, diet and exercise – and putting it into a smartwatch makes this easier than ever before.

It’s not the only blood pressure tracking smartwatch on the market, however. The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 can also take blood pressure readings, but you need to calibrate it with a cuff every couple of weeks, and this does take away some of the freedom.

blood pressure

Having what amounts to an inflatable strap certainly adds bulk to what’s already a chunky smartwatch, but the Huawei Watch D doesn’t dress this up as a consumer device – it’s designed for people that need to be tracking their vitals daily.

The AMOLED display is the kind you'd expect from a top smartwatch, yet the chunky buttons remind us of the long-departed Polar V800. It's not a fashion device, nor is it marketed as one.

Huawei Watch D blood oxygen sp02

However, it does have 70 sports modes and seven days of battery life, so it's certainly no slouch.

Aside from blood pressure and ECG (more on that shortly), it also has GPS and will track an array of activities and sports, meaning it can provide a 360-degree look at your health. Ultimately, though, it's those with underlying conditions that will be drawn to the Watch D.

And it has a price to match its cutting-edge capabilities, with a £399 tag in the UK. There’s no chance of a US release for this, and the chance of FDA approval (given the trade embargo in the US) is nil.

Huawei gets ECG – rolling out to other devices

The new Huawei Watch D ECG reading

The Huawei Watch D also tracks ECG, and the company announced that it’s earned certification for that in Europe and the UK.

ECG is a big boost to its ambitions as one of the top dogs in smartwatches – and means it can compete with Apple, Fitbit and Samsung.

And it’s not just the Huawei Watch D that can check the rhythm of your heart - the feature will also roll out to the Huawei Watch GT 3 and GT 3 Pro, as well.