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Xiaomi officially unveils the Mi Smart Band 5 in Kenya for KSh 4,499

If there’s one product I can always count on Xiaomi to deliver, is their fitness smart bands, I enjoyed having the Mi band 4 from day one and I’m sure as hell hopeful of my next Mi Smart Band 5. Smart fitness trackers have rivaled smartwatches in areas we never thought they could, and come to think of it, if you’re getting everything you need on the band and costs way less with a long-lasting battery, why should you even care about smartwatches. The Mi Smart Band 5 on paper impresses with some additions we longed on the predecessor, but one thing that makes it even more attractive is the retail price – no reason to miss out on this one.

To be honest, I see no reason for going with pricy smartwatches while smart bands can deliver if not all but a good percentage of what we get on the later. And with all due respect to smartwatch fans, I also like to sample here and there like my recent investment in a Huawei Watch GT2, the main reason I see someone opting for the watch is purely cosmetic rather than functionality, and maybe perhaps a larger screen. Xiaomi’s latest wearable offers just enough you shouldn’t go looking elsewhere for a companion.

New features and improvements over predecessor

The wearable offers a lot of features you’d only expect in a smartwatch but in a smaller package. And just like the previous band, it looks sleek and of course sporty and will surely look well with any outfit. There are quite a number of improvements over the band 4 that will delight fans such as a slightly larger display, a couple of sensors and manages to keep where the predecessor excelled.

The design language is similar to the predecessor except for the charging mechanism which have been improved to not require users to remove straps anymore. When you flip the band over, you’ll easily notice two nodes which connects to the magnetic charger for your convenience.

Xiaomi also increased the display size for the band 5, now at 1.1inches and still uses AMOLED technology from the previous 0.95inch. it’s also slightly brighter ensuring you have greater visibility outside which is impressive for a smart band within this price point. Typically, when you look at cheaper wearables across various manufacturers, the obvious sacrifice is usually the screen – not this time. Below the display panel, you still get the wonderful capacitive button that acts as the home button to return from wherever you are to the familiar home screen.

Swiping left or right gets you to weather, music and notifications, while scrolling up or down brings-up the status menu, personal activity intelligence (PAI), Heart rate, Notifications, stress, breathing, weather, workout and more. The workout section has been further improved to include 12 different workout sections that include; outdoor running, treadmill, cycling, indoor cycling, walking, elliptical, rowing machine, yoga, jump rope, swimming and free style. Once you’ve chosen your workout, simply tap on the display and start recording your session. Putting on the strap is simple as it could get, you just have to pass it thorough the loop and press it into one of the available holes. It has a barometer, pedometer and heartrate sensor and you’ll be shocked just how precise this band is considering the price point.

Mi Smart Band 5 is already retailing on Jumia for Ksh. 4,499. under Xiaomi products.

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