Meet My Mi Band 6

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acurrie

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Thanks to Michael Fisher's video review (available in this morning's news briefing) it looks like I won't be getting a G-Shock smartwatch after all. And honestly, that's fine, because I've already moved on... to a Mi Band 6.

If you're in the market for a cheap but capable fitness tracker or wrist-based notifications to manage your smartphone addiction, an unassuming Mi Band is an excellent choice for two big reasons: comfort and price.

Comfort

A reviewer somewhere was having trouble weighing the latest Mi Band because it wasn't registering on his scale, and I believe it. The band is so impossibly light that you quickly forget you're even wearing it. Also, it's pill shape won't impede any bending of the wrist that's wearing it, and if you don't like the included strap you can find replacements online for about a buck each.

Price

On the subject of money I bought my Mi Band 6 from this AliExpress seller for $60 CAD, or $50 USD. For a fitness band that lasts more than a week and reliably delivers notifications to your wrist (sorry, Fitbit) that's a pretty incredible deal, and goes a long way to forgive its few but notable shortcomings, like a dim screen and lack of app support. But you still get robust fitness tracking, music controls and a high-res AMOLED screen. Some further details:

Fitness Tracking

Version 6 of the Mi Band is definitely an improvement over version 4, as it adds two of my favourite tracking features from the Amazfit Bip: (1) a vibration alert after every kilometer I've walked, and (2) auto-pause for the inevitable traffic light that makes me wait.

Unfortunately there's no direct support for exporting your workouts but the Mi Fit app for Android can at least sync with Google Fit and then export from there. If, for some reason, you're worried about sending your health stats to China the last time I checked Mi Fit synced with a server in Singapore.

Given how Google already knows about me why not share the wealth a little bit? ;)

Notifications

What's especially great about notifications is the granular support—Mi Fit lets you choose which apps can or can't alert your wrist. This 6th iteration has only limited emoji support and unless you have the Chinese-market version you can't reply from the band. For me, that's a "nice to have" feature that I rarely, if ever, use on other smartwatches.

I'm happy to answer any specific questions about the Mi Band or Mi Fit. If you're interested and can stand to wait a few weeks for delivery I'd say go ahead and get your order in now!

Links: Mi Band 6 Product Page, Mi Band 6 on AliExpress
 
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