Chinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi is the latest to get involved in the world of fitness wearables, and has launched the Mi Band. It’s not targeting the hardcore fitness freak, but those who’re looking at simple devices like the Misfit Shine. While the features are relatively basic, the price – in usual Xiaomi style – is very attractive. How much? How does the equivalent of $13 sound? That’s $2 cheaper than a large Domino’s pizza with pepperoni, and it will have the exact opposite effect on your body.
It’s hard to argue with any gadget at that price, and the Mi Band isn’t bereft of features, although we’re still not sure exactly what it will track, and how it will manage the data. Xiaomi says it will monitor your activity and your sleep, but doesn’t go into detail about individual exercises. There’s a smart alarm setting to wake you up during a moment of light sleep, and a choice of different wrist bands, including one made from leather.
The lack of display on the Mi Band, which uses light-up LEDs to provide status updates, means the battery will keep going for 30 days before needing a recharge. It has a Bluetooth connection, so it will sync with a smartphone, but Xiaomi hasn’t shared any details about an accompanying app. Finally, the always-on wrist band is water resistant, and has an IP67 rating.
The Mi Band can be configured to unlock your smartphone provided it’s in range, so you won’t have to repeatedly enter your PIN code, plus in the future, Xiaomi will integrate the Mi Band with other smart equipment, including garage doors and door locks.
No, it doesn’t have a flashy display or measure your heart rate, but it still has a comprehensive enough feature list for the casual user, particularly because it’ll only cost $13. Unfortunately, there’s no indication the Mi Band will ever make it out of China or Xiaomi’s other markets. We can see it selling well if it did though.