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Xiaomi Mi Band and Xiaomi Mi Band 1S (also known as the Pulse) have definitely given a great shock to the smart bracelets market, taking into account that their price is dramatically lower than that of the competition. An evolved display was overdue and here it is, under the name Xiaomi Mi Band 2 (Check on Amazon.com).
The package is small and neat: we find inside the Mi Band 2’s Body, a stainless steel bracelet (sturdy and essential), and the small USB charging accessory.
Design and fit
Yes, the Mi Band 2 is a little bit bigger than its predecessor, but the fact is that it doesn’t really alter the feeling in terms of the fit and convenience of wearing one every day. If you have enjoyed a Mi Band in the past you will also feel comfortable with this one. For those who have not worn a bracelet like this, it is a clean-cut solution and will not impact your daily habits. Also great is the fact that it is resistant to water and dust according to the IP67 standard, ensuring it will survive even in the shower.
What you’ll need to know is that it has Bluetooth 4.0, low energy, and that on the opposite side of the screen there is a heart rate sensor, which is quite accurate. Sadly during sports activity, it fails to detect a heartbeat. There is no NFC present.
The real new feature of the Mi Band 2 is the OLED 0.42″ display on the front. It displays the time and if you tap on the small circle under the display (which is not a real button) you can scroll through the various information that you choose to show from the options: distance covered, calories burned, heart rate and battery charge. The screen is well-lit under normal circumstances but it is perhaps a little too bright at night and a little too dark on a sunny day, but you can still read it.
For the first time, we have a “software” to talk about: there is almost nothing you can do to interact with it directly from the device, except “rotating” between the various screens.
The smartphone app has evolved a lot in recent months. The first screen will show you the data about the current state of your activity, showing you the steps taken, the distance traveled and the calories burned. Here you will also find the latest data on sleep, weight (to be entered by you), the latest heart rate measurement and statistics for the last few days. Pressing on one of these items you can see the details, where you can learn for example if you have had a deep or light sleep (it is more accurate if you authorize the use of the heart rate sensor during the night).
The Play entry is actually related to the alerts you can see on your Mi Band 2. There are many applications you can choose, but not all, and depending on your smartphone you may (or may not) select apps such as Whatsapp and Facebook. This is true on Android, while on IOS the following apps are compatible: WeChat, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat e Whatsapp. On Android, many apps share the same alert sign, while on the IOS there is a custom alert for each one. Other features include call, alarm clock, idle and texting alerts. At the moment, third-party apps are not yet available.
From the app, you can also access your profile, where you can change the settings, such as the arm on which you wear the Mi Band 2. There is also the possibility to find the Mi Band 2 directly from the app or the possibility to add friends to follow. However, the function of logging your activities (which also takes advantage of your mobile device’s GPS) does not allow you to review your history.
The 70mAh Battery guarantees, according to our test, about 30 days on a single charge. It can, of course, vary depending on your kind of use, but it is still an excellent result.
Xiaomi Mi Band 2 is sold online (Check on Amazon.com) and remains one of the cheapest in its range.
The Xiaomi Mi Band 2 is not a revolution, but, exactly like the Mi Band 1S, a fair upgrade of an excellent product. It is not, of course, without flaws (dodgy heart rate measurements while exercising), but for the price, we can’t lament.