Chinese electronics manufacturer Xiaomi, known more for its affordable smartphones, is also a key player in the smart wearables segment. Riding on the success of the Mi Band 2, launched in 2016, the company has now launched an upgraded Mi Band 3, with a bigger touch-enabled screen, more health and fitness features, and an improved heart rate sensor for accurate monitoring.
In terms of design, the Mi Band 3 continues with the dual-element design that has been part of the Mi Band-series all along. The smart wearable has a tiny capsule unit that fits in the wrist strap made from thermoplastic elastomer. However, unlike the predecessor, this smart band gets a bigger OLED touch screen covered with curved glass, along with a capacitive key for easy operations.
The Mi Band 3 is primarily a smartwatch that also doubles up as a health and fitness tracker, and a heart rate monitor. Therefore, it is not a complete replacement for full-fledged health and fitness tracking modules or a heart rate monitor. Unlike the previous version, the Mi Band 3 has a touch screen that makes it easy to switch between different modes. To select and enter a mode, a long press is required on the capacitive home button below the screen.
The Mi Band 3 supports several modes, making it one of the most feature-rich products in the budget smart wearable segment. Although an entry-level smartwatch, the Mi Band 3 supports sleep tracking using the built-in heart rate monitor – something seen mostly in expensive fitness trackers. The feature might not return accurate results all the time, but it works flawlessly and shows details that make understanding sleep patterns easy. Another interesting feature of the device is heart rate monitoring, which can be set to regular or an interval-based one. Unlike sleep monitoring, the heart rate monitor is close to accurate and works well. However, it requires the band to be placed on the wrist properly.
What really complements this band well is the Mi Fit app that syncs data between the paired smartphone and the band. The app shows relevant information, such as heart rate information, sleep patterns and activity details in a graphic format which looks interesting and is easy to understand. The app is available on both Google Play and Apple App Store.
The Mi Band 3 is one of the most feature-rich products in the smart wearable segment. Priced at Rs 1,999, this entry-level fitness and tracking device has a lot to offer to fitness enthusiasts — from heart rate monitoring to sleep patterns and route tracking. Importantly, the band works for 15 days or more on a single charge with the heart rate sensor set to register the beats at quick intervals.