About Me

I ramble about a number of things - but travel experiences, movies and music feature prominently. See my label cloud for a better idea. All comnments and opinions on this blog are my own, and do not in any way reflect the opinions/position of my employer (past/current/future).

16 June 2015

Xiaomi Mi Band - The Long Usage Review

There are two amazing features of Xiaomi's Mi Band - it's price of 99 HKD and its battery life of approximately 180 days.I bought mine on my first day in Hong Kong (on 2 March); and have worn it for most of the time since. The band is comfortable, although I would have preferred a band that stretches a bit more. I do take it off before showering - so I can't vouch for its water-wear.

The band has two major functions - step counting (as the general activity monitoring) and sleep monitoring. The step counter, at least when taking steps, is quite accurate. I actually tested in on the 4 odd Km walk around the top of Victoria Peak, and the distance counter was spot on. I am not sure how it works for other activities though - the reading during my bike rides seem a bit low for example.

The sleep counter has been more iffy - it largely gets it right; but I find that it sometimes gets waking up times wrong - especially if I have hit the snooze button a few times :) I do like the view of "deep sleep" and "light sleep"; but can't really vouch for its accuracy! There have been some other weird bugs - like recording sleep activity when I was not sleeping (e.g. watching a movie or reading a book for a long period of time) or not recording sleep activity during a short nap in the afternoon. Since I don't do either of those type of activities frequently, I have only noted a few examples of this occurring.

The software does integrate to Apple Health - though this aspect has been quite buggy in a few different ways:
  • Apple Health and Mi Band double counts. If I have my iPhone in my pocket, and walk - Apple Health counts both those steps and those recorded by the band; and instead of correlating it adds these up.
  • The sleep tracker in Mi Band is editable (to record more accurately waking time at least). However, edits do not seem to feed through to Apple Health.
  • The sleep tracker in Apple Health does not account for "deep sleep" and "light sleep"

When I was in Hong Kong, the Mi Band was great to keep track of how much I actually walked in the city; and there has been a great contrast in the drop off in walking since then. I often miss the 8000 steps default target during the work days -  although this does depend on which office I am based at. The activity tracker has not changed my actual routines - but has made me aware of the level of activity that I have taken. So in that way I suppose, it is quite positive.

Movie: Mad Max: Fury Road

I remember bits and pieces of the Mad Max series - although Tina Turner in Beyond the Thunderdome sticks out the most. This is quite different - in fact, Mad Max is not really the main star of Fury Road; but rather Charlize Theron's Imperator Furiosa puts in the commanding performance as the hero. 

The cinematography is stunning, the stunts are stunning, the sound track is perfect - and Charlize Theron puts in a really great performance. It is a great action movie and great fun.