There’s a excessive likelihood that that is the primary time you’re listening to of Zepp. That’s as a result of our Zepp E Circle overview is centered on the very first Zepp smartwatch.
You is perhaps extra accustomed to Amazfit/Huami, which purchased the Zepp model earlier this yr. Just lately, Amazfit transformed its smartphone app to the Zepp branding, which implies we’re more likely to see much more Zepp smartwatches sooner or later. For now, it’s most likely best to think about this watch as an Amazfit/Huami/Xiaomi-adjacent product.
With the Zepp E Circle, Amazfit is gunning for a premium smartwatch expertise, and it positively achieves that on the subject of the hardware. Nevertheless, well being monitoring and app assist is a special story.
Zepp E Circle overview notes: I used the Zepp E Circle for 9 days, working firmware v2.6.three.01. I paired the watch with my OnePlus 7 Professional at some point of this overview. Amazfit/Zepp supplied Android Authority with the Zepp E Circle overview unit. The smartwatch is appropriate with each Android and iOS, by way of the Zepp app accessible on each platforms. Nevertheless, we solely examined it on Android.
Zepp E Circle An exquisite smartwatch for the customer who cares principally about that.
The Zepp E Circle is among the prettiest smartwatches we have ever used. Nevertheless, its magnificence far outshines its smarts, making it the sort of product we’d solely advocate to consumers who prioritize appears to be like over all the things else.
Design and hardware: It doesn’t get significantly better than this
Let me simply get this out of the way in which: the Zepp E Circle shouldn’t be solely one of many nicest smartwatches I’ve worn, however one of many nicest watches I’ve worn typically. It’s skinny, mild, and stylish, and its rounded infinity edges make it look far more costly than it truly is.
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The 42mm case is barely 9.1mm thick, making it a lot thinner than most opponents on the market. For the sake of comparability, the Samsung Galaxy Watch three is 13mm thick, the Fossil Gen 5 is 12mm thick, and even the Apple Watch Collection 6 is 10.4mm thick.
The mannequin I acquired for this Zepp E Circle overview is the Polar Night Black version with an actual leather-based band. The band is a bit flimsy for my style so I wasn’t too massive a fan of it, but it surely nonetheless felt nice on my wrist. Fortunately, the bands are interchangeable with any 20mm bands you could find on-line.
The underside line is that if all you care about is the look of your smartwatch, you possibly can’t go mistaken right here. In case you don’t just like the rounded look of the Zepp E Circle, you might get the Zepp E Square as an alternative, which has almost all the identical specs and options however in a extra Apple Watch-like design.
Zepp E Circle overview: Specs
You’ll find the specs desk for the Zepp E Circle beneath. Nevertheless, I needed to focus on just a few issues.
First off, don’t be swayed by the comparatively small battery. Regardless that a 188mAh cell is far smaller than many competitor watches, the Zepp E sips on that energy. I took the watch off its charger on Monday at eight:30 AM, and I didn’t have to cost it once more till Sunday morning. That’s six full days of battery life throughout which I repeatedly tracked my coronary heart fee, steps, and stress stage. I additionally tracked just a few transient bike rides and a six-mile hike that lasted round two hours.
The watch additionally prices shortly. It takes about 90 minutes to cost from zero to full. Nevertheless, the charger is a proprietary two-pin magnet. Which means try to be cautious about tossing the charger in your bag with any delicate electronics and that it gained’t cost on any of your wi-fi docks or mats.
Lastly, there isn’t any NFC chip on this watch and no built-in GPS.
|Zepp E Circle|
416 x 416 decision
|Case||42.2 x 42.2 x 9.1mm
Chrome steel development
Proprietary magnetic charger
No wi-fi charging
|Connectivity||Bluetooth 5.zero LE
No built-in GPS
|Monitoring||Coronary heart fee
|Sturdiness||5ATM water resistance|
Smartwatch options: Simply the fundamentals
Since that is the primary Zepp smartwatch, it could be unrealistic to count on there to be strong third-party app assist. Nevertheless, it’s value stating upfront that there’s actually no third-party app assist on this smartwatch. Which means no Spotify, no Google Assistant, no third-party well being apps — nothing. It’s attainable extra app assist could possibly be on the way in which, however that is the way it was throughout my overview interval.
With that being stated, there are many options right here that ought to maintain most customers blissful. There’s a easy music controller that labored with each smartphone app I attempted. Sadly, there’s no accessible inner storage on the Zepp E, so that you’ll have to have your telephone with you for music.
The Zepp E Circle has all the fundamental options you’d count on, however that is not all it takes to be aggressive these days.
There’s additionally a easy climate app, an alarm system, a compass, and a “Discover Cellular” app that may ring your smartphone. Granted, these are all primary stuff you would discover on any smartwatch.
The watch additionally provides a notification system that lets you examine smartphone alerts in your wrist. Sadly, there’s no manner to answer textual content messages from the watch. There’s no speaker or microphone, so voice responses are out. There’s no keyboard system, so typing can also be out. Your notifications are read-only.
Now, these are all of the issues that the Zepp E Circle didn’t fairly slam out of the park, but it surely did nail fairly just a few issues. There are a ton of watch faces on provide right here (all free throughout my overview interval), which is all the time good to see. There’s an always-on show choice you should use, though that may drain the battery a bit sooner than in the event you don’t. Additionally, you will discover a customizable hardware button, customizable widgets, and a battery-saving “Fundamental Watch” mode that Zepp says may double your battery life.
Health and well being monitoring: A number of choices, little accuracy
On paper, the Zepp E Circle is a health-focused purchaser’s dream. It provides your commonplace step monitoring, coronary heart fee monitoring, and exercise monitoring. It additionally has SpO2, stress, and sleep monitoring.
Nevertheless, throughout my time with the Zepp E Circle, I discovered the well being monitoring to be hit-and-miss. There have been a whole lot of little points that stored popping up. For instance, I used to be within the kitchen cooking. I used to be strolling backwards and forwards from the oven to the counter to the sink again and again. In the midst of this, the Zepp E alerted me that I ought to stand up and transfer round. Was it simply not monitoring my steps all that point?
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One other instance: throughout a high-intensity bike trip, I wore my Fitbit Cost four on one wrist and the Zepp E on the opposite. Through the trip, my Fitbit was alerting me as I moved from zone to zone: Fats Burn, Cardio, and so forth. The Zepp E, although, stayed within the “Heat Up” zone for your complete trip. Now, it recorded all the information of the trip, however the watch’s real-time show didn’t let me know my coronary heart fee was manner up. This is able to be an enormous downside for somebody who’s doing high-intensity coaching and needs correct coronary heart fee information as they go.
Finally, this is perhaps forgivable if the Zepp E information matched the Fitbit Cost four, but it surely doesn’t. Take a look at the charts side-by-side for my coronary heart fee throughout that bike trip (Zepp is on prime, Fitbit is on the underside):
Granted, these graphs are constructed very in another way so it’s onerous to match them like this. Nevertheless, I can let you know that the Fitbit recorded me at a 135bpm common with a peak of 157bpm. The Zepp E, however, says my common was 122bpm and the height was 170bpm. These are wildly totally different numbers.
As talked about within the specs part, the Zepp E doesn’t have a built-in GPS. On that bike trip, I used the related GPS characteristic with my OnePlus 7 Professional. I used to be in a position to examine this with the inner GPS monitoring of the Fitbit Cost four, and issues matched up rather well. This means that GPS monitoring ought to be pretty correct, though your telephone’s GPS could have a giant impact on that.
The underside line is that the Zepp E provides an entire lot of well being monitoring, however the accuracy of a few of that monitoring may not be excessive.
The Zepp app: An excellent begin
Many of the capabilities of the Zepp E Circle will be tweaked immediately on the watch. Nevertheless, there’s an entire lot occurring within the Zepp Android app, and also you’ll want to make use of it to get the watch up and working. It’s just about the earlier Amazfit app, with a change of branding.
The onboarding strategy of the Zepp E is clunky, to say the least. I’m fairly vital of Google’s Put on OS, however onboarding is one facet the place that working system actually shines. The Zepp app may study quite a bit from it.
Zepp’s proprietary smartwatch OS jogs my memory a whole lot of Put on OS, for higher or worse.
For instance, at a sure level in the course of the setup, you should manually tweak your telephone’s settings to make sure that the Zepp app’s actions don’t battle. The app provides directions for varied telephone producers to do that, however OnePlus wasn’t on the record. Unbelievably, neither was Google, LG, and even Apple. This left me scrambling to determine the place the assorted settings are situated.
Moreover, the Zepp app would typically cease syncing with the Zepp E. There have been 3 times throughout this Zepp E Circle overview that I wanted to drive cease the app, clear the cache, after which reboot simply to get the watch to sync accurately.
These are some massive complaints, however I’ll admit that the Zepp app has a whole lot of good going for it. It’s quick with tons of settings tweaks, charts, and stats. It provides the person a excessive stage of management over what the watch does and the way the app integrates with the watch’s information. It additionally integrates with different platforms, corresponding to Strava and Google Match.
What Zepp wants most is to trim the fats, make onboarding simpler, and localize the app for varied markets. As it’s now, the app may be very clearly only a translated model of a Chinese language app, not an app particularly catered to United States consumers. If it might do these issues, the Zepp app might be killer.
Zepp E Circle overview: Worth, competitors, and the decision
At $250, the Zepp E Circle isn’t any funds watch. For about $45 extra, you may get the Fossil Gen 5, which has NFC, built-in GPS, accessible reminiscence for music storage, and way more. And for $20 much less, you may get the Fitbit Versa 3, which is able to doubtless offer you extra correct information monitoring whereas offering many of the similar options because the Zepp E.
Nevertheless, the Zepp E appears to be like an entire lot higher than both of these watches. It’ll additionally trounce a whole lot of opponents on the subject of battery life.
General, the Zepp E Circle is an efficient purchase. Sure, there are a whole lot of points I’ve with its lack of options and inaccurate well being monitoring. However hey, these issues may not be vital to each purchaser. Some consumers simply desire a watch that appears nice, feels nice, and does the fundamentals. That’s the Zepp E Circle.
Yet one more factor: if you’re an iPhone person, you most likely shouldn’t even take a look at this watch. For $30 extra, you may get the model new Apple Watch SE, which is able to virtually actually be higher in each respect than the Zepp E Circle. After all, this solely applies to iPhone customers, as you continue to can’t use an Apple Watch with out an iOS machine.