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OnePlus Nord Watch affordable smartwatch announced

OnePlus has announced its second ever smartwatch, the OnePlus Nord Watch, and this time it’s extremely affordable – if you can get your hands on one.

The brand rolled out its debut smartwatch last year in the OnePlus Watch, and it’s fair to say that it wasn’t very well received. One of our many criticisms was that it simply didn’t provide the value for money we’ve come to expect of OnePlus.

That doesn’t appear to be a problem with the OnePlus Nord Watch, which was just announced for the Indian market. The OnePlus Nord Watch, which retails for just Rs 4,999, which works out to just £54 even in our highly devalued currency, though there appear to be no plans for a wider rollout.

While the original OnePlus Watch emulated Android Wear watches like the Samsung Galaxy Watch with its circular design, the Nord Watch takes a leaf or two out of the Apple Watch. It metal body takes the familiar shape of a rounded off rectangle, together with a circular side control that’s actually just a button rather than a rotating crown.

Despite its low price, the Nord Watch sports an impressive IP68 rating, so it’s reasonably water and dust proof.

The front of the watch is taken up by a 1.78-inch OLED display with a 368 x 448 resolution and a maximum brightness of 500 nits.

Once again, OnePlus has eschewed Wear OS in favour of its own custom RTOS, which we weren’t big fans of before. It means there are no third party apps to download, for one thing, though you will have access to more than 100 watch faces via the N Health companion app.

One advantage of switching to this less advanced platform is the benefit to battery life, and OnePlus claims that the Nord Watch can stretch to 10 days on a single charge of its fairly ordinary 230mAh battery.

There’s no doubting the OnePlus Nord Watch’s fitness chops, either. Tracking features are enabled by a 3-axis accelerometer, a heart rate monitor, and an SpO2 sensor. The watch can track as many as 105 exercises, and supports automatic workout detection for running and walking.

Separate from the usual sports and exercises, the OnePlus Nord Watch also supports sleep tracking, stress monitoring, and period tracking.

In a way, this feels likes the high-value smartwatch OnePlus should have led with last year. It’s a shame we probably won’t be seeing it outside of India.

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