XIAOMI MI BAND PULSE

HWM (Malaysia) - - TEST -

On the sur­face, the Xiaomi Mi Band Pulse is nearly in­dis­tin­guish­able from its pre­de­ces­sor, the orig­i­nal Mi Band. It is still the same ob­long shaped sen­sor, with a shiny cut edge around its alu­minum top. The Pulse, how­ever, in­tro­duces a heart rate mon­i­tor onto the tiny de­vice. The wear­able’s sil­i­cone band is quite com­fort­able on skin. We were only con­scious about the de­vice when we went for a run, but not dur­ing day-to-day ac­tiv­i­ties, such as be­ing at work or in bed.

The Mi Band Pulse is sup­ported by the same app made for its pre­vi­ous wear­able. Pair­ing the new Pulse via Blue­tooth is just as easy as the orig­i­nal Mi Band’s process. The new BPM (beats per minute) fea­ture is eas­ily vis­i­ble on the main screen, but it only tracks rest­ing HR, since the de­vice re­quires you to tap ‘mea­sure’ in the app’s menu in or­der to get a static snap­shot of your BPM. It does not take a live sam­ple when you are awake, or run­ning. That said, it is one of the most ac­cu­rate HRMs in this shootout as it gives read­ings that are close to other HRM-ca­pa­ble wear­ables, and even home-use blood pres­sure mon­i­tors.

As we tested the band on an iOS plat­form, it’s im­me­di­ately ap­par­ent that the iOS version has lim­ited func­tion­al­ity when com­pared to its An­droid coun­ter­part. The An­droid app lets you in­di­cate the unique types of ex­er­cises, like Rope Jumping or Sit-ups, but this fea­ture is seem­ingly miss­ing from the iOS version. As a pas­sive well­ness tracker, the Mi Band Pulse only tells us the to­tal num­ber of steps and sleep ac­crued, and doesn’t dif­fer­en­ti­ate be­tween ex­er­cise and day-to-day ac­tiv­ity.

While it may not pack as many fea­tures as com­pared to Jaw­bone or Fitbit track­ers, it still does all the ba­sics of a tracker, on top of its new and ac­cu­rate heart rate track­ing. If you’re par­tic­u­lar about your stren­u­ous ac­tiv­i­ties, the Mi Band Pulse would be un­der­equipped to make you sat­is­fied. How­ever, if you’re a seden­tary of­fice worker who’d like to see some phys­i­cal progress, the Mi Band Pulse is an ex­cel­lent choice given its low price point and core fea­tures. It’s more ac­cu­rate than its fel­low well­ness tracker, the Jaw­bone UP3, too.

The Pulse’s Heart Rate Mon­i­tor gives you your HR read­ing on­de­mand within the app, but it doesn’t track pas­sively.

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