Original Xiaomi Mi Band 2 Heart Rate Monitor Smart Wristband With OLED Display BLACK
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- Fitness Tracker: Monitor your activity levels, sleep patterns, and more with Mi Band 2 which can record your steps, distance, pace, calories burned and active minutes, and sync its data via Bluetooth 4.0 to the Mi Fit app
- Smart Reminder: When your phone receives calls, messages or other notifications such as from Facebook, Mi Band 2 will vibrate to remind you. Simply lift your arm to view the notification icon on the display screen with caller name/ID when you receive a call
- Sleep Monitor: MI Band 2 can monitor your whole sleep cycle, automatically recognize the stage of sleep (deep or light sleep) via heart rate monitoring, record the data and duration of every stage accurately, and help to analyze and improve your sleep quality
- IP67 Water-Resistant Wristband Watch: MI Band 2 is durable and resistant against water splashes, sweat, cosmetics, dust and more. You don’t need to worry when doing daily routines, even when washing hands or taking a shower
- Compatibility: Support for Bluetooth 4.0 and above, Android 4.4 and above and iOS 7.1 and above iOS. Install MI Fit app to get instant statistics and set alarms, notification alerts, and other functions
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Color: Black (Straps are changeable). Display: Touch Screen OLED. Total Length: 235 mm. Adjustable length: 155-210 mm. Weight: 7.0g. Battery capacity: 70mAh. Battery Standby Time: 20 days. Battery Type: Lithium Polymer. Input Current: 45 mAh (Typical) 65 mAh (Max). Waterproof: IP67 rating. Battery capacity: 70mAh. Standby time: 20 days. Batteries Type: Lithium polymer. Input Current: 45 mA (TYP) 65 mA (MAX). Weight: 7.0g. The main material: Plastic, aluminum. Waterproof level: IP67. Total length: 235 mm. Adjustable Length: 155-210 mm. Material: Thermoplastic elastomers, aluminum. Measuring method: photoelectric volume pulse wave plethysmography (PPG). Bluetooth chip: Dialog top Bluetooth chip (Bluetooth 4.0). Sensor: ADI military gravity sensor. App: Mi Fit. Language: English, Chinese.
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- Lightweight and comfortable
- Accurate readings for steps, sleep, and heart rate
- Long battery life
- Excellent value for the low price tag
- Syncs with Google Fit
- Excellent 3rd party applications that open up the Mi Band 2's capabilities
- IP67 rating means you don't have to worry about getting it wet
- OEM software is lacking in significant ways
- Calorie tracker is fairly inaccurate
I used the Fitbit Charge HR for over a year, Mi Band 1s for over 6 months, and have now tested the Mi Band 2 for 1.5 months. I workout 5x a week, try to eat as healthy as possible, attempt to get 6+ hours of sleep a night, and attempt to walk at least 10,000 steps a day. For me, having a fitness tracker is not only fun, it helps me to monitor exactly what habits I am maintaining on a daily basis. In all honesty, I have no real complaints with the Fitbit Charge HR and I still consider it an excellent fitness tracker. However, as an avid Android user (I use the Nexus 6P and stay up to date on all things Android related), I wanted to explore options that would sync with Google Fit and potentially have more room for tinkering. That's where the Mi Band 1s and now the Mi Band 2 enter the picture.
I was able to purchase the Mi Band 2 through GeekBuying.com in late May (it was supposed to be a pre-order) and ended up receiving one week later in the first week of June. I was pleasantly surprised to say the least. Be careful to ensure that you are purchasing an authentic Mi Band 2 (you can google fake vs authentic Mi Band to get a quick overview).
The packaging is simple and almost identical to the Mi Band 1s–just a simple natural colored cardboard box with the band, charger, and manual inside. The band is comfortable to wear, the silicone is soft and flexible, and the included charger is easy to use. After unboxing, I charged my Mi Band 2 for 2 hours and was ready to go. The initial setup slightly more of a pain than I anticipated. The OEM Mi Band software would not connect with my Mi Band. From some research, I was aware that this was a common issue with the Mi Band 1s and 2 because of the less-than-stellar OEM software. The fix? Download "Mi Band Tools" or "Mi Band Notify" from the Google Play store and either of those apps will connect with the Mi Band 2 instantly, thus allowing the OEM software to also detect and connect with the Mi Band 2.
Next thing I noticed? The OEM software stinks. Sure it's fine for displaying steps and sleep data, but that's literally it. The Mi Band 2 is capable of continuous or periodic heart rate monitoring, yet the OEM software only allows for user-activated heart rate monitoring (meaning you have to open the app, press a button, and then it gives you one reading of your heart rate) or only continuous heart-rate monitoring when you choose start a "workout" (some versions of the OEM software have received an update allowing a work-out mode). The problem with the work-out mode is that the information is limited to only the work-out setting and does not integrate at all with your overall tracking stats. I was incredibly disappointed to say the least. If this was the only option for the Mi Band 2, I would give it 1 star and just give up. Fortunately, for Android users, the 3rd party apps "Mi Band Tools" and "Mi Band Notify" open up a whole new world of capabilities for the Mi Band 2 (Mi Band Tools updated their app and the Mi Band 2 is now fully supported; Mi Band Notify is working on providing support for Mi Band 2 still). Personally, after spending some time browsing all the features of the two apps, I ended up going with "Mi Band Tools". With this app, you are able to sync directly with Google Fit, you can set the heart rate monitor for continuous tracking (for workouts, for example), periodic tracking at any interval you please (track heart rate every 10 minutes, 20 minutes, etc), all information is displayed in helpful charts that are highly customizable, you can set vibration alerts for any app, you can set different icons to appear on your screen for any app, and more. Trust me, check out the two apps and you'll be impressed with what your little Mi Band 2 will be able to do!
I'm a nerd over tech stuff, so I decided to wear the Mi Band 2 on one wrist, and my Fitbit Charge HR on the other wrist for two weeks straight to get an accurate comparison of the two bands (I had done the same thing with the Mi Band 1s in the past, and will include small comparisons with the Mi Band 1s as well in this review). After two weeks of steps, workouts, sleep, calorie counting, and heart rate tracking, I was able to draw some general conclusions between the two bands, as follows:
OEM Mi Band software stinks, as I have previously described. Fitbit's software is far superior in every way (social integration, UI, etc). However, with the 3rd party apps available for Android users, the Mi Band 2 becomes a lot of fun to use with plenty of tracking data available. The biggest perk is syncing with Google Fit (for those who care), and the ability to export data onto an excel file (meaning you actually own your information, instead of it being locked into Fitbit's universe). VERDICT: Slight edge to Fitbit because it is simply more polished.
After two weeks of data, my Mi Band 2 consistently tracked slightly less steps than my Fitbit. However, both bands were within 5-7% of each other throughout that time. For what it's worth, when comparing the step counts with my Google Fit's count measured directly from my phone, my phone's step count was also lower than my Fitbit and closer to the count provided by my Mi Band 2. VERDICT: Draw
The Mi Band 2 seemed to be less accurate with sleep tracking. The Fitbit was able to track restless sleep and when I was awake more accurately. The Mi Band 2 had the tendency to over calculate the amount of sleep I was getting, and failed to detect that I was awake multiple times while in bed (i.e., reading in bed). However, the Mi Band 2 did a fine job of calculating deep sleep vs light sleep, and for the most part, results were quite accurate in comparison to Fitbit. Verdict: Fitbit does a better job with sleep tracking.
The Mi Band 2 simply under calculates the amount of calories burned throughout the day. For one, it only measures calories burned with respect to how many steps you took during the day, and does not factor in your BMR (basal metabolic rate, which includes how many calories you burn normally in a day depending on your weight, etc). It appears to simply use a generic calculation that every 1000 steps is roughly equivalent to 50 calories burned. Fitbit on the other hand takes into consideration steps, BMR, and heart rate (to some extent). VERDICT: Fitbit does a better job with calorie tracking.
HEART RATE TRACKING:
Both bands are relatively inaccurate in tracking heart rate due to technological limitations (you can't compare bands on your wrist to heart rate sensors that wrap around your chest). However, once your expectations are adjusted, I was able to see that both the Mi Band 2 and Fitbit Charge HR did pretty good jobs with accurately tracking my overall and general heart rate throughout the day. In fact, the Mi Band 2 did a slightly better job of providing accurate heart rate readings. My Fitbit Charge HR tends to under detect my heart rate, especially during workouts. However, the Mi Band 2 was able to track my elevated heart rate during intense resistance training exercises much better. VERDICT: Mi Band 2 does a better job with heart rate tracking.
Easy. Mi Band 2 lasts WAY longer. Fitbit Charge HR averages 3-5 days. Mi Band 2 averages 10-35 days depending on the frequency you set for the heart rate tracking. With heart rate tracking limited to just workouts, I was able to go 31 days and still had 9% battery life left. With heart rate tracking every 7 minutes, I am currently at 14 days with 42% battery life. VERDICT: Mi Band 2 is much more efficient with battery life.
OVERALL WINNER: In my mind, the Fitbit Charge HR is still more polished and ready to go, and under objective standards, it is the clear winner. The OEM software is excellent, the band is comfortable to wear, all tracking is pretty accurate, and there is nothing really to complain about. However, if you are looking for a fitness tracker that is far more affordable with almost all the same features (Fitbit Charge HR is able to track stairs and elevation; Mi Band 2 is unable to), then the Mi Band 2 may be the right one for you. I personally value the ability to track my fitness data on Google Fit (rather than have it all locked on Fitbit's software platform), and the ability to tinker with how often I track my heart rate, etc. As a result, subjectively, I like the Mi Band 2 more. In terms of the difference between the Mi Band 2 and Mi Band 1s, I would say it really just comes down to having the screen (and you don't sacrifice battery life at all with having the screen because the battery is likely larger in the Mi Band 2. I actually got slightly less battery life out of the Mi Band 1s on the same tests); and the Mi Band 2 does not appear to be plagued with the issue of the tracker popping out of the silicone band unintentionally (this happens occasionally to the Mi Band 1s). Other than that, the Mi Band 1s and Mi Band 2 track the same things.
***Fun Tip: Another perk of the Mi Band 2 is that I was able to sync it with Endomondo to serve as a continuous heart rate monitor for my workouts and bike rides. As far as I know, this is not possible to do with the Fitbit.
It's very good. Don't spend the money on a Fitbit, try this. I believe with the Fitbit you are paying for the excellent phone app, as a lot of these low cost fitness trackers have horrible apps.
The Xiaomi on the other hand is open software, in other words it allows 3rd parties to write apps that interface with it.
It does everything it says it does, and well.
As far as the app though, this is the process I suggest (Android):
1) Download the official app (MiFit) first and install it and connect it to your Mi band 2 -- now let the official app update your band firmware and also the fonts.
2) Next *unpair* your band (important) from the official app and then uninstall the official app
3) Download and install the app "Notify & Fitness" (Android) -- this is the app I like and have great success with, there are several others
As I look at Fitbit's $150 "Alta HR" on their website, I can tell you this does everything that that one does. AND the Xiaomi is waterproof and the battery lasts 21 days or so. The Alta HR is not waterproof and the battery lasts only 7 days according to their website.
There ya go. It's an excellent fitness tracker. If you're thinking about a Fitbit, save a lot of money and get this one. You won't be disappointed.