Brutally honest, complete and long-term review of the Honor MagicWatch2

The Honor MagicWatch2, taken with a Galaxy S9

The Honor MagicWatch 2 46mm, taken with a Galaxy S9

In this review, I'll talk about the Honor MagicWatch 2 in all of its aspects, I'll firstly talk about its specs, its release date, its history (yes, this watch has indeed a history), then I'll talk about its features and I'll give my opinion after a few months of use.

Bear in mind that I had nothing against Huawei/Honor before buying this watch, I had a Huawei Band 3 Pro before having the watch and I had a Huawei P8 lite 2017 when it got released (it was a great phone).

Why should you read this review ?

You really should read this review if you're considering buying it or if you're just interested in it, in order to help you not waste your time; if you're looking for a smartwatch and you're interested by the Honor MagicWatch2, avoid it ! It's not a smartwatch and I'm explaining why here.

If you're looking for an accurate fitness tracker, you definetely must avoid it and look for a Garmin watch or something else, the Honor MagicWatch 2 isn't accurate at all to track workouts, I'm explaining why here

You should also read this review to know more about Huawei/Honor watches, since this review will cover the entire ecosystem of Huawei/Honor watches, because they (almost) all are running the same operating system, therefore all of the offered features are the same.

Bear in mind that my review isn't like any other review; I'm not paid by Huawei/Honor to review it, they didn't give me the watch as well, and it's a long-term review; some "tech reviewers" are reviewing devices after a few hours or a few days of use (or they're reviewing while using it, which is horrible), but it's not really enough to have a great opinion of the device, this is the main argument of why you should read this review.


The Honor MagicWatch 2 is a fitness-focused watch that has been released on the November 2019 (for the MNS-B19 version), it has been released by Honor and 'should' be maintained by Huawei in terms of updates, but there is another version (MNS-B39) which came after the split with Honor and Huawei in mid-2021, it's currently maintained by Honor and has some updates, unlike the MNS-B19 version which is discontinued. Both versions have 32mb of RAM, 4GB of storage (about 2GB usable), Dual GPS, and they're running on Huawei LiteOS.

The 46mm has a 1.39 inches OLED capacitive touchscreen and 454 x 454 pixels resolution and a non-removable Li-Po 455 mAh battery which lasts 14 days (according to Honor, it's obviously not the case).
Whereas the 42mm version has a 1.2 inches OLED capacitive touchscreen and 390 x 390 pixels resolution and a non-removable Li-Po 215mAh battery which lasts 7 days (according to Honor, which it's obviously not the case).

They're both (the 46 and 42mm version) made out of 316L stainless steel material which is commonly used in the aerospace industry. The material of the smartwatch offers less susceptibility and high strength to weight ratio, it also offers a strong resistance against scratches (which really works).


The Honor MagicWatch 2 supports 85 customised workout modes that cover six categories of sports: extreme, leisure, fitness, aquatics, ball games and winter sports. The activities range from street dance to parkour, rock climbing to yoga, and ballet to boxing (most of them offers basic data (calories burnt, heart rate, duration), so they're useless to be honest). There is also 15 professional workouts and 13 running courses, they (the running courses) are great since they help improving the workout capacity (such as aerobic capacity, VO2max etc...) it'd be more great if the watch had accurate sensors, which is absolutely not the case.

The Honor MagicWatch 2 also offers some data from a barometer sensor and altimeter data, I'm giving my opinion of it here, it offers a breathing exercise, a compass, a SpO2 tracking, a stress tracking (opinion here), a sleep tracking (I'm giving my opinion of it here) and weather data (my opinion of it).
The 46mm version supports bluetooth calling, therefore it has a microphone and a speaker; you can use the speaker to play some songs that you have to store in the watch, whereas the 42mm version doesn't offer those things.

Here's a table of the offered data from the 15 professional workouts :

15 professional workout modes Data
Outdoor running Trail (distance), workout time, heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), altitude (minimum and maximum altitude), stride frequency (average stride frequency and maximum stride frequency), calories, average running pace, average speed, average stride, steps, cumulative elevation gain, cumulative elevation loss, maximum oxygen uptake
Indoor running Heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), average running pace, stride frequency (average stride frequency and maximum stride frequency), distance, workout time, calories, average speed, average stride, steps
Outdoor Cycling Distance, workout time, calories, average running pace, speed (average speed, maximum speed), heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), cumulative elevation gain, cumulative elevation loss, altitude (minimum and maximum altitude), recovery time
Outdoor Walking Distance, workout time, calories, average running pace, stride frequency (average stride frequency and maximum stride frequency), altitude (minimum and maximum altitude), average stride, steps, cumulative elevation gain, training performance(recovery time), heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone)
Indoor Walking Heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), average running pace, stride frequency (average stride frequency and maximum stride frequency), distance, workout time, calories, average speed, average stride, steps
Indoor Cycling Heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), calories, workout time
Pool swimming Swim strokes recognition, pool length, workout time, swimming laps, stroke counts, SWOLF (average SWOLF, the best SWOLF), stroke frequency (stroke frequency and maximum stroke frequency), heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), calories, average swimming pace, distance
Open water swimming Distance, heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), SWOLF (average SWOLF, the best SWOLF), calories, workout time, swim strokes recognition, stroke counts, average heart rate, average swimming pace, stroke frequency (stroke frequency and maximum stroke frequency)
Mountain climbing Trail (distance), speed (average speed, maximum speed), heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), altitude (minimum and maximum altitude), workout time, calories, average pace, average stride frequency, average stride, cumulative elevation gain, cumulative elevation loss, training performance(aerobic/anaerobic), SpO2
Hiking Distance, workout time, calories, heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), stride frequency (average stride frequency and maximum stride frequency), average stride, steps, cumulative elevation gain, cumulative elevation loss
Trail running Pace (average pace, maximum pace), stride frequency (stride frequency and maximum stride frequency), distance, workout time, average speed, average stride, steps, cumulative elevation gain, heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone)
Triathlon Distance, workout time, calories, sports pattern recognition, separate sports pattern distance, separate sports pattern workout time, swim strokes recognition, average SWOLF, average pace, calories in separate sports pattern, heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), cumulative elevation gain, cumulative elevation loss, maximum speed, average stride frequency, average stride
Elliptical machine Heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), calories, strokes/min (average rpm, minimum and maximum strokes/min frequency), steps, workout time, training performance (aerobic/anaerobic)
Rower Heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), calories, workout time, training performance (aerobic/anaerobic)
Free training Heart rate (average heart rate, maximum heart rate and the heart rate zone), calories, workout time, training performance (aerobic/anaerobic)

Source: Honor

My opinion after a few months of use

This part will cover each features of the watch (and more).

Workout tracking and offered workouts

As I have written previously, The Honor MagicWatch 2 supports 85 customised workout modes including 15 professional workouts (you can see a table of the offered data from these workouts here) and 13 running courses.

The tracking is, to be honest, horrible for a fitness tracker. It could definetely be better. What makes the tracking horrible is the delay to pick the speed and the heart rate information; there is a 5-15 seconds delay that makes the distance data wrong (since it's based on speed).

I noticed it in the first days of use; while walking at a uniform/constant speed, when you suddenly stop, the watch will take between 5 and 15 seconds to show the actual speed. (I'll make a video on it)

Moreover, the altimeter is tremendously inaccurate, so for riding bike in the mountains or for workouts that can make this data useful, it's not really great to see wrong altimeter data.

The heart rate data (in the workout) are also sometimes wrong; it overestimate low readings, therefore when you're warming up for a workout, it might show some weird readings.

There's a voice in the workout tracking (only available in english), it's great in the running courses because it tells more about what to do, and it also tells some advices etc. There's one drawback from this voice (without counting the lack of available languages), it looks too much robotic, especially when it tells numbers such as the heart rate, the workout duration or the distance.

The running workout is great for one point; there is an AI (called "Smart Companion") that you have to surpass, you can set the running pace (you can select the pace from the last running workout, your personnal best, a standard pace and a professional pace. You can also customize the pace.) and you must have a better pace than the set pace to surpass the AI, there is even a nice illustration on the workout page.

smart companion menu

Smart companion from outside running workout

setting pace menu

Setting the pace

display of the smart companion and me

Display of the smart companion and me

Workout data

As an owner of a Huawei Band 3 Pro before having the Honor MagicWatch 2, I bought the MagicWatch 2 in order to have more accurate data in my workouts, and I was also interested by the altimeter sensor, some 'tech reviewers' told that everything were accurate in the watch, but I think most of them have been paid by Huawei/Honor, because it's completely wrong !

I excepted to have more data, which isn't the case, I have the exact same data as my Huawei Band 3 Pro, unfortunately Huawei/Honor didn't manage to put the Smart Companion data in the Health app, it'd be great to see some data like how far I have surpassed the smart companion, how many times he surpassed me (and the opposite) and more.

workout data from 2 different devices

Data from Huawei Band 3 Pro on the right, and from the Honor MagicWatch2 on the left.

You can see that both data are identical, there are no more things from the Honor MagicWatch2 (I don't count the altimeter since it's really inaccurate).
If you're comparing the price, it makes it worse; data from a $30 band and from a $130 watch, it's really disappointing

Running courses

The 13 running courses are pretty great in my opinion (if I don't count the wrong workout tracking), it helps to improve aerobic capacity, VO2max, stamina, it also helps to lose fat and more. It goes from the more easiest course to the hardest, I've tried all of them and it's really great, especially with the voice which gives some advices to do better.

Steps counting and tracking

The steps sensor is the most accurate sensor of this watch, it's definetely better than my old band, it tracks steps well (even if it needs some bugfixes; when I'm walking slowly it doesn't count every steps), the steps tracking is really useful because when I'm walking a lot during a period of time, it counts it as an activity, so it record the time and I can see it from the watch in the Activity records apps.

Elevation data

The elevation data tells you when you're walking up stairs and/or doing elevation, it's a good idea to implement this, but only if the sensor does the job properly, which isn't the case with the Honor MagicWatch 2, since the altimeter isn't accurate, the elevation isn't accurate too; when I walk up the same stairs with the exact same way multiple times; the reading will not be the same.

Moreover, when I'm sitting for a few hours, the watch is capable of detecting elevation since the altimeter sensor isn't accurate, therefore it makes that sometimes I can see a 10 meters elevation without walking up something.

Sleep tracking

Huawei are calling their sleep tracking "TruSleep", I'd call it FalseSleep.
Their sleep tracking are tremendously inaccurate, and it's very rarely that it's accurate:
Sometimes, when you're just laying on your bed to watch a movie or a series, there's a very high chance that it counts it as a nap, if the Huawei Health app would be complete and great; it would allow us to remove unwanted data, but it's not the case, so it lets you with a wrong sleep data.
Moreover, it sometimes doesn't count when I'm awake for a short time, or the opposite, it somehow counts that I have been awake for a long time when I was sleeping.
The rise time is often wrong by a few minutes (10 or 20 minutes).

I had these problems with my band too, when I bought the MagicWatch2, I thought that these issues were solved since the TruSleep version is more recent, but it's obviously not the case...

Altimeter, barometer and compass sensors

I'll briefly begin with the altimeter sensor; as I said mutliple times previously; the altimeter sensor is completely wrong !

inaccurate altimeter

The altimeter data for a day that I stayed at home

As you can see in the picture above, it looks like that I went outside and walked downhill, but it's really not the case; I just stayed at home, a few hours after it was even worse (I unfortunately forgot to take a picture).

The barometer sensor is also inaccurate, but it's less accurate than the altimeter sensor.

The compass is really great, it's accurate and I have compared with my phone, they both tell the same thing, unfortunately it's useless since we can't use it in workouts, it'd be great to have the possibility to use it.

Stress tracking

The stress tracking isn't really advanced, it's just based on the heart rate, the watch only tracks when you're not moving for a few minutes, we unfortunately can't manually track the stress from the watch, but only from the app.
In my opinion, the stress tracking is a little bit accurate, but there's still some weird readings; when I'm stressed for an exam, it tells me that I'm relaxed (kind of weird...)

I want to highlight something weird; I had to calibrate the stress sensor, in order to calibrate it, the Huawei Health app asked me some weird questions such as :

weird questions

Weird questions asked by the Huawei Health app.

Heart rate readings and tracking

Here comes my opinion on the worst sensor; Huawei/Honor watches are known to have an accurate tracking when not moving, but with this watch it's not the case at all, sometimes the green led turns off and the readings are crazy, here's an example :

inaccurate heart rate sensor

Inaccurate heart rate tracking

inaccurate heart rate sensor

Inaccurate heart rate data

As you can see in these pictures, the heart rate sensor was really inaccurate, it happened one week after having the watch, since this day I always worry about the heart rate sensor, I always check if the tracking is normal, it's unfortunately rarely the case...

The heart rate tracking in workouts is pretty accurate, but not warming up since it mostly overestimate low readings.


You can receive notifications from your watch (they make a sound if you disabled the silent mode, unfortunately you can't change the ringtone), when you miss a call you can call back the person, when you receive a message, you can do absolutely nothing... it's worse when I receive a MMS, I can't see the picture attached to it, it's just written "Image".
Even worse, I rarely get notifications from the watch, I checked if the apps are enabled in notifications and it's the case, but I still don't receive them, it's even worse for the messages, I almost never receive them, it really sucks. With my band I received everything properly...


You can set alarms in the watch, it'll ring to wake you up. And even this feature has flaws; The smart alarm wakes you up when you're not in deep sleep; which is the opposite for me; it wakes me up when I'm in deep sleep...
You can only set a maximum of 5 alarms... It's really low.
The alarms are making a stressful and horrendous ringtone, the worse part is that you can't change it...

Do not disturb mode

As the title indicates, the watch has a Do not disturb mode, and this pretty simple thing has some missing features that could be useful...
You can't really put exceptions in the mode, with my Band 3 Pro I can set some exceptions (calls, alarms still vibrate and raising the band still works), I can't do that in the MagicWatch2... It's really some simple features, c'mon Honor...

Bluetooth calling feature

The 46mm MagicWatch2 has the bluetooth calling feature, it's pretty great, the only drawbacks are that you can't dial a number from the watch, and the contacts app is limited, you can only choose 10 contacts, it'd be great to have the entire contacts from the phone in the watch, each time I entirely dissociate my phone from the watch (e.g to connect on my Band 3 Pro), I have to set up the contacts again...

Music player

The 46mm MagicWatch2 has a music player, you can play stored songs in your watch, it has 2gb of usable space to store every songs you want from your phone in the Health app, I don't really use this feature, but the only drawback is the volume, every levels of volume are almost silent, but the higher level is too much loud compared to the penultimate level.

Weather data

When the simplest feature ever has a lot of flaws and missing things...
I'll begin with the lackings things; it lacks the speed of the wind and its direction, it's lacking the sunrise and the sunset times, it's lacking the moon phase, it's lacking the humidity and it's lacking an accurate forecast (we should be able to see more hours).

The flaws is mainly the accuracy of the weather of this watch; once it was raining a lot and the watch told me that it was sunny... And the degrees aren't accurate compared to my phone and a thermometer, it has sometimes 2 degrees more or less.

Responsiveness, UI (User Interface) and specs of the watch

In this part, I'll tell my opinion of the Responsiveness, the UI and the specs of the watch.

The responsiveness is the worse thing of this watch; it's not smooth at all, when you're browing things such as the language list, the time zone setting (when you want to personalize a watch face), the workout records, the workout page (when you're exercising) etc... You can see that the navigation isn't smooth at all, for the price of the watch it's really horrendous.

The worse part is with the GT3 it's really smooth compared to the GT2 and the MagicWatch2, and the GT3 has exactly the same specifications as the GT2/GT2 Pro and the Honor MagicWatch2...

The UI of the watch is pretty basic, it's almost the same UI as the first Honor Watch Magic

The specs of the watch are too much limited, only 32mb of ram, the Samsung Galaxy Active 2 has 768mb of ram, it's almost the same price as the GT2/MagicWatch2...

Battery life

The battery life of the 46mm Honor MagicWatch 2 is pretty great (I assume the smart features have been sacrified to let the place for the battery :D), it lasts upto 5 days when doing one or two workouts, sometimes 7 days if you're not using the workouts features

Design of the watch

The design of the MagicWatch2 is really a strong point, it has almost a luxury look, it's especially nice with the 316L stainless steel.
Once, my watch has rubbed against a wall by accident and the metal has absolutely nothing, it was the first time and it still the first time that I was impressed of this watch.

I bought a black stainless steel strap for the watch, and it goes really nice with it; it looks like a luxury watch :D .

General features of the watch + operating system

This part will be the most criticized feature of the watch.
This watch is lacking too much basic features and it's being called a smartwatch, Huawei and Honor should get sued to call this a smartwatch in my opinion, it's not smart at all !

I knew that it's not a smartwatch when I bought it, but I excepted some useful features, but I'm still looking for them, it looks like a non-finished product, seriously. There are many weird bugs and too much lacking things.

LiteOS deserves its name, it's too much light, it's a non-finished OS, and it looks like that it's discontinued on this watch, I haven't seen a new feature since a very long time. Huawei and Honor want to do the same thing as Apple; a closed ecosystem, but their ecosystem is horrendous...

You can't install a third-party watch face easily, there is no apps, there is no interesting, useful and smart features, not even a simple calculator !

Updates of the watch

If you read the introduction, you know that there are two models of the watch; the MNS-B19 and MNS-B39.

The MNS-B19 "should" be maintained by Huawei but it's currently not the case, therefore it's discontinued.

The MNS-B39 is maintained by Honor and actually receive updates see here, however, it only receives basic updates (bugfixes that adds other bugs...)

Huawei Health app

The Huawei Health app is pretty basic, but it looks like they're trying to catch up with the other fitness apps (even if they're faaaaar away from other fitness apps)

Huawei Health home page

Huawei Health home page

In the home page, you can see cards with some pretty basic health information. In comparison to Samsung Health, you can't input the food you ate in Huawei Health.

What I like about the app is the weekly and monthly report; you can see your performance and your health during the week and the month, and the reports are pretty detailled

They recently added Healthy Living, it helps to live better by giving advice and goals for your sleep, for walking etc... It even reminds you to breath (as it was easily forgettable :D)
There are some missing things in the Huawei Health app, you can't sync the health data with another fitness app, there is another way here but it'd be great for Huawei to implement it.

Huawei/Honor Watches in general

After having researched a lot about Huawei/Honor Watches, I wouldn't recommend you to buy one, even a Huawei Watch 3. I think they're too much overpriced and they're not worth it, there is a big lack of smart features and the features aren't really smart and interesting.
They should try to bring Android back to their watch, it was definetely better with it; it's inacceptable that a product is expensive and looks unfinished with a lot of missing things.

Bugs encountered with the watch

I've encountered too much bugs with the watch; first of all, while I'm in a workout, the workout stats are sometimes bugged, I can't swipe to navigate through the stats anymore, I can't use the lower button to navigate too.
The watch has sometimes a bug when displaying the heart rate graph, there are missing data :

Missing heart rate data

Missing heart rate data

As you can see in the picture, there are some heart rate data missing, but I could see them on the app, it happened a lot of times and it really sucks that I still have to use the app to see the entire health data.

Workout Status app has bugged once, and even a restart couldn't fix the bug, here is the bug :

workout status app bugged

Workout Status app bugged

As you can see in this pic, the text is not centered and is too much on the right, even restarting couldn't fix this, I had to do a workout to make it normal again.

Brightness bug: There were a bug that even a reset couldn't fix the bug, when changing the brightness from auto to the highest level (5), it comes back to auto when raising the watch, so it was impossible to have another brightness level than 5.
See the bug in this video :

Does the Honor MagicWatch 2 worth it ?

There's a really simple answer to this question : absolutely not, it's not a great fitness tracker since there's a firmware-level problem to pick some informations such as the speed, so there's a big delay of between 5 and 15 seconds to show the current speed, there are a lot of bugs, LiteOS is too light, and moreover it has only basic features that aren't really great.

In conclusion, it's neither a fitness tracker, nor a smartwatch; it's a waste of money. You definetely shouldn't buy it, except if you like to waste about $130, luckily I got it for about $70 but I regret having wasted every cents on it... Even a basic connected watch that you can find on AliExpress for $20 offers more features than a Huawei/Honor watch.

Suggestions of features/things that can be added in the watch or in the app

I definetely hope Huawei/Honor will consider to add these features, because it'll be a long list, click here to skip this list and go to the conclusion of this review.


The Honor MagicWatch 2 has a great potential, but its potential is ruined by the firmware, therefore it's not a smartwatch but a dumbwatch, and it's not a fitness tracker since it doesn't tracker fitness very well.

I wouldn't recommend you to buy this watch, except if you like wasting money for useless things.

Pros Cons
Good Battery Life Not smart
Good design Bad fitness tracking
Good step tracking Overpriced
Mostly useless
Bad heart rate tracking
Poor and basic features
Non-finished look
Lacking a lot of features
Poor specs
Slow in some menus
No apps
Limited to a poor ecosystem
Hard to put 3rd party watch faces
Inaccurate sleep tracking
Useless altimeter
Lack of more workout data
Limited Health app

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