ARE CHINESE SMARTWATCHES SAFE?


Chinese tech companies have made a massive success in the smartwatch area where Xiaomi, Huawei, Lenovo, Amazfit all manufacture standard devices at reasonable price ranges. Are you concerned if chinese smartwatches are safe to wear in terms of health, privacy and safety aspects. 

Well, to know more about these concerns, check out the post till the very end. 

Yes, Chinese smartwatches and fitness trackers are safe to use as long as the quality of the product is excellent. Everybody is aware of the fact that China manufactures products at a very cheap and affordable price because of the Chinese Cloning. It can possibly be good and bad. So, before buying any of the smartwatches, make sure you do your research about the brand and the model you are choosing to ensure data privacy and security.

For health-related concerns, wearing a smartwatch is not going to affect your body in the short term. However, in the longer run, it is uncertain at this point that the smartwatches may or may not cause health effects. 

Many Chinese smartwatch companies manufacture legitimate models and devices that offer customers great specifications and highly effective experience at a reasonable cost that can compete with the leading smartwatch brands like Apple or Samsung. 

However, before you buy a cheap smartwatch, keep in mind that many of the Chinese smartwatches are terrible and much less secure. A cheap smartwatch can never be compared with a highly priced and expensive brand smartwatch. 

Some of the risks associated with the Chinese smartwatches are:

HEALTH RISKS 

The earlier version of smartwatches only uses Bluetooth which emits radio-frequencies to communicate with different devices and it does not cause any danger to human health. But, now the upgraded version of Chinese smartwatches uses bluetooth, WIFI or 4G, which emits Electro-Magnetic frequency radiation that can possibly cause long term health issues. As of yet, we don’t have enough scientific evidence which can show an association between exposure to radiation from electronic devices to health problems. 

Furthermore, Nausea and headaches are very common symptoms if you wear your smartwatch all day long. The consistent use of technology can turn your sleeping pattern upside down with lack of concentration and low productivity. 

As a result, the memory and mood of the person also gets affected. These smartwatches use blue light which makes it very hard for the brain to relax even after the device is turned off. Risk of overeating has also increased among individuals because the mind does not respond to the activity of eating while the person is busy with their smartwatch. 

DATA AND PRIVACY RISKS 

Before deciding on your purchase, always look for a well-established and widely recommended smartwatch company that can help improve your security without worrying about throwing money after an unusable product. The best chinese smartwatch has a lot to offer but a cheap chinese smartwatch makes you more vulnerable to data and privacy scamming. Most of the smart technologies like smartphones, smart home devices, security cameras are facing privacy and security flaws.

Sometimes the manufacturer does not have enough resources to support a security team of the highest quality thus they opt for limited data encryption and security standards.

The transfer of data between smartwatch and smartphone via wireless connection is much less secure unless the data is encrypted and protected. The hackers can interrupt the signal and steal sensitive information. In most of the watches the data sent between a smartphone and smartwatch is not worth stealing. Some hacks contain viruses that get transferred from your watch to your phone and take control of your device.

In Chinese smartwatches, researchers discovered a major security flaw in which the hacker can leak the personal information, real time and history location and even listen to the user by taking control over the smartwatch’s microphone.

In most of the cases, the third party apps are more unsafe and all the data handled by these apps should be considered insecure. Scammers prey upon these poorly designed apps and once you grant permission to the apps to access your smartwatch’s camera, GPS location, microphone,credit card transactions, the hackers get into your device, take control and gain information about your daily routine and ATM passwords.

SAFETY RISKS 

The use of smartwatches is kind of addictive. The smartwatch is always on your wrist and you might pay too much attention to the notifications popping up and be constantly distracted for most of the time. The Smartwatch Companies represent ‘being connected’ as one of their greatest specifications, but at the same time it can affect your present behaviour and your social surroundings too.

You can pose a threat to road safety if you are distracted by your watch while you are driving. When texting or checking your notifications, you are more likely to drive at slow speeds and disable to assess traffic conditions which can be extremely dangerous.

How can you control these risks?

Despite these risks, there are many ways you can protect yourself and your health.

Protection against Radiation 

There are many types of permanent cases and radiation shields available in the market that claim to protect you from harmful electro-magnetic frequency radiation. These are affordable, quick and easy to apply and do not affect the look or functionality of your smartwatch. 

You can put your smartwatch in airplane mode which will turn off most of the functionalities including bluetooth, GPS, cellular connection and the watch will work as a simple analog clock. This will reduce the radiation level and will not affect you at a wide scale. 

One of the rare risks associated with smartwatches is flammable batteries which are more common in smartphones because they have large battery cells. For smartwatches Lithium ion/ lithium polymer batteries are recommended. 

Protection of data and privacy 

Whatever the case, always make sure to buy a trusted Company’s Smartwatch and pay attention to how they handle the security and privacy policies for their products or services to protect device owners. 

The same pattern applies for the apps you install on your watch. Always restrict app permissions to guard your smartwatch from unauthorized access. Later, you can turn on permission when needed. 

The data shared between your smartwatch and smartphone should be encrypted before transmission. Big brands like Apple and Samsung offer contactless payment solutions on your smartwatch and it uses secure technology to protect the data and mostly it does not save credit and payment information on the smartwatch. 

You can use two-factor authentication in which you get confirmation notification on your other device to keep undesirable users away. The facility of protecting your smartwatch using passwords and pins to lock your watch is a great feature.

Ensure safety 

The smartwatch companies claim the benefit of using the smartwatch for 24hours a day. But it is upto user to limit the use of the watch when there is no need for it. It is important to understand that when you are out or at work you need to communicate with other people. If you are continuously distracted by your watch notifications then you won’t be able to focus on your work properly. 

For time being, turn off the bluetooth and other connectivities and it will eliminate radiations and give you body a break. There is no need to track your body activities when you are sleeping. So it is better to remove the watch and it will be more comfortable for you to sleep without something restricting your wrist. While driving you are more prone to accidents if you keep.

Conclusion

Checking your messages and notifications on your smartwatch has become easy. Many road safety campaigns are going on that demand ban on wearable technologies for drivers. For the sake of yours and other people’s safety, take off the watch and put it out of your reach until you get to your destination. Otherwise, smartwatches are a great investment can make your life easy.

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Jaspreet Singh

I'm the co-owner of Wearable Hacks. I love to write about smartwatches. On this website, I share everything That 'I learned. For more information Go to About Page

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