The Xiaomi Mi Watch Lite: a smart watch for the frugal
In the promotional photos, the Mi Watch Lite strongly resembles an Apple Watch. However, in real life, they can hardly be confused. The body of the Xiaomi gadget is more square and made entirely of polycarbonate with a matte finish. The black version came in for review, but there are also variants in white and blue. The rounded corners of the display give the novelty an elegant look and make it comfortable for everyday use.
The strap is made of soft silicone. It can be easily replaced if required: The strap is available in five different colours. The buckle is the classic plastic buckle. The device weighs 31 grams, so it hardly feels in your hand. The Mi Watch Lite looks compact compared to most modern smartwatches. On the right side there is a single physical key. It's used to return to the home screen, open menus or activate the screen.
The protective glass easily collects fingerprints and dust, but is just as quick to clean: one touch on any soft cloth is enough. The only questionable design point has to do with the positioning of the display. It is imbedded in the case asymmetrically: there is a thick chin at the bottom and a thinner bezel at the top. It doesn't look too pretty, but because of the black interface and predominantly dark dials, it's not too conspicuous.
The Mi Watch Lite features a modest TFT touchscreen display. Although the vendor doesn't specify the technology used, by all accounts it's TN. After all, when you turn your hand, the picture fades at angles, the depth of black is average, and the image is not as rich as that of IPS matrices. Resolution is high: 320x320 pixels. At a diagonal of 1.4 inches, the panel produces a dense picture. Text does not break up into pixels, notifications are easy to read. The screen is large enough to comfortably view notifications and track workout results. Many messages are visible without swiping. All the information fits on one page.
The brightness of the matrix is high, so visibility in the sun is excellent even on a sunny day. There is a sensor for automatic brightness adjustment, which is rarely equipped with inexpensive smart accessories. It doesn't get the Always On Display feature, but it does turn on the display when the user raises their hand.
In addition to step and calorie counting, the watch supports 11 sport modes, continuous heart rate monitoring, the PAI activity analysis system, stress and sleep quality assessment, and offers respiratory recovery assistance. A barometer is also present to detect variations in atmospheric pressure.
The Mi Watch Lite boasts built-in GPS and GLONASS. The modules are needed to accurately track the distance and record the route while running and cycling. During such workouts, you don't need to take your smartphone with you, relying solely on the watch. The Xiaomi gadget is fully waterproof and submersible to a depth of 50 meters. The model is convenient to use in the pool to measure your heart rate while swimming.
The Xiaomi Wear app is responsible for syncing with your phone. The interface of the utility is simple and user-friendly. In it you can view the statistics of physical activity, configure the gadget, track workouts and change the appearance of the interface. There are 120 watch faces available for download. However, it can be difficult to find a good-looking classic screen, as many of the options look too specific.
The watch runs its own operating system, so it's not possible to install third-party utilities. The speed of the system is hardly lightning fast. The display is slow to respond: sometimes it is not immediately clear whether the screen has reacted to pressure. The situation is aggravated by the absence of kinetic scrolling and low interface rendering speed. The developers have removed all animations, so the device seems slow. The smoothness of the interface is out of the question.
The gadget control is simple. Swipe up to open the notification centre, down to open the quick settings curtain, left or right to switch between application widgets, which are configured on the smartphone.
The watch is not designed for talking and is not equipped with a speaker or microphone. It only allows you to reject a call. Additional features include music control, phone search and a torch that turns the brightness of the screen to maximum.
The Mi Watch Lite will last up to 9 days without recharging in moderation. During the week of testing, the watch constantly synced with the mobile phone, received all notifications, and monitored health indicators. The screen brightness was adjusted automatically. There were also several hours of cycling with GPS on. Plus a couple of hours playing tennis, which was tracked by the accessory as a random workout. In such an active scenario, the gadget discharged 90% in seven days. The battery capacity is 230mAh. The device is charged in a cradle with two pins. It takes about 2 hours to fully replenish the energy.
The Xiaomi Mi Watch Lite is an inexpensive smartwatch for everyday wear and sporting activities. Thanks to the built-in GPS sensor, it tracks your workout without the help of your smartphone. The accessory has a long battery life and pleases with a sleek design. The accessory has a low screen quality and a slow system. But the affordable price makes up for all the shortcomings of the gadget.