Zepp is one of the last smartwatch brands to arrive in Europe. It is an independent brand of Huami, a manufacturer known for Amazfit watches and for being the one who currently makes the Xiaomi Mi Band.
Zepp watches aspire to the highest category of smartwatches premium, and among them, the Zepp Z is the most sophisticated in terms of design, build quality and user experience. It’s worth it? To find out, we spent several weeks testing it thoroughly.
- Circular: 1.39 inch AMOLED (454 x 454 pixels).
- Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0.
- Sensors: Heart rate monitor, ambient light, blood oxygen meter, three-axis accelerometer.
- Waterproof: 5 ATM.
- Drums: 188 mAh.
- Dimensions: 45.9 x 45.9 x 10.7 mm
- Weight: 40 grams.
- Materials: titanium, leather …
The most exceptional smartwatch in terms of design
Let’s face it, the Zepp Z is the best build quality smartwatch on the market. First of all, we find the box, which has a TC4 titanium alloy construction with a nano coating that increases its durability against nicks and scratches, ensuring that over the years (as far as it resists technologically) it continues to feel like a new product.
The titanium extends forward, functioning as a frame that can protect the watch screen from certain impacts. We have lines and numbers to indicate the minutes, which gives the clock a lot of class. However, this was not a very smart design decision since the watch’s own software allows us to choose which side we will have the physical buttons on. So either you like to have the buttons on the right or you will have the minutes back. In my particular case, as I would prefer to have the buttons on the left, force me to commit.
Regarding the buttons, looking at them from the right, the upper one is a tactile button that can be configured to access one of the different health files (heart rate, blood oxygen or stress), the lower one allows you to open an application that you choose and the central is a crown which acts as a start button, but you can also use it to move around the menus. The haptic vibration is perfectly synchronized with the rotation of the crown and the feeling when wearing is extremely pleasant.
The strap included in the Zepp Z is dark leather. It feels elegant and has a good presence, besides leaving us feeling like a bracelet that will have good durability. In case your goal is to always carry this watch with you, both when wearing a costume and for your workouts, it is highly recommended that you get other straps to avoid damaging the leather one with your own. sweat. In this sense, Zepp Z bracelets are interchangeable at 22 millimeters standard, one of the most widespread on the market.
At the bottom, you can see the biometric sensors and the anchors to unhook the straps. Magnetic charging pins are not visible because this device charges via wireless charging.
The wireless charging stand is not intended exclusively for its base, and it is that systems like the Wireless power sharing of the Samsung Galaxy available from S10 and Note 10 is able to charge the clock. This feature is ideal if you have a mobile of this style, as you can go on a trip with the peace of mind of not having to carry the watch charger with you.
Smartwatch experience: Exactly the same as the Amazfit GTR 2, for better or for worse
A few days ago, we told you about our experience with the Amazfit GTR 2, a watch that we liked, although the software still had some improvements to make. The experience with the Zepp Z is almost exactly the same, since we are almost exactly the same Software, with virtually identical health and exercise metric when integrating the BioTracker 2 system. Well, there’s one key difference from the Zepp Z, and that’s does not include internal storage to incorporate music into the watch.
We find a main screen where we will have the clock face. If we hold the screen we can switch between the pre-installed spheres, while if we want more we will have to install them from the Zepp app on our mobile.
If we swipe from the top, we will show a shortcut menu to Flashlight mode, screen brightness level, do not disturb mode, battery saving, screen lock, search for phone and cinema mode.
By sliding down, we will access the notifications. By default, the clock will not show us the notifications and we will have to activate them from the Zepp app, where we can choose which apps will show the notifications. Once configured we can see each notification with its icon, sender and message, but we will not have a way to respond from the clock, being a bit of a crappy solution for the category we are in. .
If we slide to the sides, we will have widgets to access a dashboard with information, heart rate or stress history, multimedia control from our mobile or direct access to weather information. They are very comfortable and accessible, although we miss that several applications have their own panel, such as alarms or the timer.
Finally, if we press the crown, we can open the applications menu. The Zepp Z does not have the possibility of installing applications, having to be limited to those which are pre-installed as standard.
- DAD: System for measuring our physical activity to give us a score, a function that we have learned in the Xiaomi Mi Band 5 and which tries to measure our health with a simple score.
- Cardiac frequency.
- SpO2: One of the trendy features to arrive incorporated into the Apple Watch Series 6.
- Exercise: Start the exercise logs.
- Activities: History of activities.
- Pressure: Stress measurement.
- Objective of the activity: Equivalent to Apple Watch activity rings.
- The music: Control the music playing on your mobile.
- Weather: We get weather information when we are near the mobile.
- Alarms: You can have up to 10 alarms on the clock itself, being able to choose in addition to the time whether it will strike once or on certain days of the week.
- Events: A kind of calendar in which we manually add calendar events. It’s very crap that it doesn’t fit into the phone’s own calendars, actually.
- Barometric altimeter.
- Find the phone.
Dozens of sports watch activities
One of the most powerful aspects of the Zepp Z is its sporty suite. Although we will have to start the activities from the clock app itself, the menu of available sports gives us the flexibility to choose which ones will be at a glance and which we will have to access through the menu with all sports. The options we have to choose from are as follows:
- Running and walking: Outdoor running, walking, treadmill, running, walking.
- Cycling: Cycling, spinning, mountain biking, BMX.
- Swimming: Swimming pool, open water swimming.
- Outdoor sports: Mountaineering, hiking, orienteering (no idea what it is), rock climbing, fishing, skateboarding, rollerblading, parkour.
- Indoor sports: Elliptical, stair climbing machine, stepper, indoor gymnastics, mixed aerobics, cross training, aerobics, group gymnastics, body combat, weight training, step training, core training, flexibility exercises, free training, HIIT, yoga, pilates, gymnastics, stretching.
- City: Square dance, ballroom dance, belly dance, ballet, urban dance, zumba, Latin dance, jazz dance, dance.
- Combat sports: Boxing, combat, martial arts, tai chi, muay thai, judo, taekwondo, karate, kickboxing, fencing.
- Ball sports: Basketball, volleyball, beach volleyball, baseball, softball, table tennis, badminton, squash, gateball, cricket, handball, bowling.
- Water sports: Sailing, stand up paddle.
- Winter sports: Skiing, snowboarding, alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, orienteering, biathlon, outdoor skating, indoor skating, curling, bobsleigh and luge, sledging.
- Recreational sports: Hula-hoop, frisbee, darts, kite, string game, jian zi.
- Other: Archery, horse riding.
A pure luxury watch, but very little technological
Judging the Zepp Z is complicated, because it’s a watch that leaves us with a lot of mixed feelings. If for you build quality and luxury are fundamental in the experience of a watch (because in the end wearable technology is not just technology, but fashion) this is surely the most elegant option. that you can find in the market. It’s gorgeous and looks like a high end watch.
However, just because design is of great importance in a watch does not mean that it is also a product of technology. In this regard, our assessment of the smartwatch experience in the six key aspects would be as follows:
- Health: Very good.
- At the sensor level we have all the features we would expect (including estimating blood oxygen) and the measurements are fantastic. In terms of sports surveillance, we have a multitude of options that make it.
- Smart features: Very poor for its price.
- We don’t have the option of installing new apps, although the initial set of apps is the basic one you’d expect in a smartwatch.
- Notifications: Poor.
- A $ 100 watch can be forgiven for not being able to respond to notifications, but in this price range, that absence should be unacceptable.
- NFC Payments: No.
- Voice assistant: It supports Alexa in English. At some point it will be available in Spanish, but there is no scheduled date.
- Drums: Decent.
- The battery lasted us between 7-10 days with the screen still active, heart rate measurement, stress, sleep tracking and sporadic workouts.
- Wireless charging support is a plus. While no standard Qi charger is worth it, so are systems such as reverse wireless charging of Samsung mobiles.
As a fashion product, it is exceptional. As a technological product, it has a lot of work to do.
As a product of technology, buying the Zepp Z is very risky, since it is in a segment where we find products like the Apple Watch, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 or the Oppo Watch. In favor of the Zepp plays a higher build quality and a greater degree of elegance, but when we appreciate the possibilities of the software, it lags far behind.
The Zepp Z is a niche product, a watch for those who seek maximum elegance and whose only interest in the functions of the smartwatch is sport and health. If you can clearly see yourself in this group, this is a recommended buy.. Otherwise, I would ignore this watch.
You can buy the Zepp Z in its official store for 349 dollars.
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