When Huawei released the Huawei Watch, it said nothing about an integrated speaker. Inactive and hidden away, it was later discovered by some enterprising users. It now appears that Huawei is readying a new firmware update that could enable the speaker. A reddit user enrolled in a user test group recently received the update and discovered that the speaker is now fully functional. Based on Android 6.0.1, this version of Android Wear bears version number 22.214.171.1246323 and build number MEB78D.
Enabling the Huawei Watch speaker provides a number of new features. Ringtones can now be set up for phone calls. Making and receiving phone calls using the watch also works. The new firmware is not without its issues though. When enabled, the text-to-speech features now reads out everything on the screen, including notifications but also the time and all menu options with no ability to control it. It’s also possible to use the speaker to play music although there is no volume control (but apparently does not sound too bad at low volume).
Google added speaker support to Android Wear with its last update. The first watch to support the new feature was to have been the LG Watch Urbane 2nd Edition LTE but it was cancelled shortly after its release. While few watches currently offer a speaker, it is certainly something that we will see manufacturers offer on new models now that there is more reason to offer it.
The update also comes with a few other new features. Google Now voice searches will apparently retry a number of times before they display the Disconnected message. There are three new gestures as well: Push down to select, Pull up to go back, and Shake to exit.
There is no word on when Huawei plans on pushing the new update to all Huawei Watch owners. Given that it’s already in beta, it may not be long before others start receiving it.