All the smarts you could want on a budget

0

The Xiaomi Mi Fit Band 6 is among the best budget wearables if you ask me. It offers an affordable way to get fitness tracking right on your wrist. But some people might prefer a device that’s more like a traditional smartwatch, and that’s where Xiaomi’s Redmi Watch 2 Lite comes in. It’s a square wearable that focuses on fitness tracking and notification-pushing, all in a package that won’t break the bank at around $60. You’ll have to get used to some compromises and compromises compared to the best Wear OS watches, but if you don’t demand fancy features and the fastest performance, it might be the perfect device for you.

ANDROID POLICE VIDEO OF THE DAY

A sleek looking square smartwatch that’s perfect for those who don’t need the real Wear OS deal.

specifications
  • Brand: xiaomi
  • Notification support: Yes
  • Battery life: 10 days with typical use, 5 days with heavy use
  • Onboard GPS: Yes
  • Offline media storage: no
  • Adjustable strap: Yes
  • Case material: plastic
  • Water rating: 5ATM
  • Calendar: Yes
  • Weather: Yes
  • Smartphone music control: Yes
  • Display: 1.55 TFT screen, 320×360
  • Battery: 262mAh
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.0
  • Health Sensors: Optical heart rate sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope, electronic compass
  • Price: €60 / INR 4,000
  • Belt: 140-210mm TPU Strap
  • Dimensions: 41.2mm x 35.3mm x 10.7mm
  • Weight: 35 g (including strap)
benefits
  • Great value given the ~$60 price tag
  • Good and durable outer hardware design
  • Loads of fitness tracking options
disadvantage
  • Slow response when checking time
  • Questionable sleep tracking performance
  • LCD screen, does not support always-on
  • To the setup process
  • Unimaginative design
Buy this product

Design, hardware, scope of delivery

The Redmi Watch 2 Lite looks quite similar to the other entrants in the Xiaomi wearable lineup. It’s a square smartwatch that borrows a design cue or two from the Apple Watch (but how many ways are there to design a square watch?), while using nothing but rubber, plastic and 2D curved glass for its exterior – a All-round subtle, simple accessory that goes with any ensemble.

Anyone who has ever used a smartwatch with a TPU band should feel right at home with the Redmi Watch 2 Lite. The material feels comfortable enough against the skin, and as long as you’re not too tight you might almost forget you’re wearing the watch – it’s certainly light enough to be unobtrusive. If you want, you can also wear the watch in the shower or while swimming – it’s water-resistant to 5 ATM.



Redmi Watch 2 Lite 16

The 1.55-inch touch display is just an LCD panel, but it’s fairly bright and you’ll hardly notice any difference from higher-end models. However, at night, the Redmi Watch 2 can become a flashlight of sorts, as the LCD’s backlight illuminates your surroundings well enough to help you spot obstacles. The lack of auto-brightness doesn’t exactly help here. For the price, however, this oversight can be forgiven.

Inside the box you’ll find the watch itself, the proprietary charging cable with magnetic pins, and an absolute unit of a manual – seriously, I haven’t seen one that thick in years. A charger is nowhere to be found, but these days everyone should probably have an old power brick with a USB-A connector lying around.


Redmi Watch 2 Lite 18

Software, performance, battery

The Redmi Watch 2 Lite is much simpler than a Wear OS watch. It doesn’t offer any third-party apps or payment support – you basically have to think of it like an oversized fitness tracker. However, the Redmi Watch could offer most people everything they need. It helps you keep track of the time (obviously), your heart rate, and your workouts, while also offering some of the usual smarts like an alarm, stopwatch, weather app, audio playback controls, compass, and of course, the option to View notifications from your smartphone.

While it’s a shame that the watch gets by with little to no animation, it’s fairly responsive to input. When you set it up for the first time, it will walk you through its gestures, which consist of swiping up from the top for notifications, swiping up from the bottom for quick toggles and shortcuts to some commonly used functions, and the physical button on the Press on the right to access all functions. You can also swipe left and right on your watch face to access widgets that let you view stats, start a workout, and access audio playback controls for your phone—all customizable through the companion app.


Redmi Watch 2 Lite 14

Notification mirroring on the watch

I said that the clock is rather to react quickly, and that means sometimes it’s not. I’m sad to report that the only area where it doesn’t excel is in waking up from sleep. When you press the hardware button to wake the screen, it takes about half a second to a second to turn on. As this is probably one of the most used features, it’s a shame it’s so slow – even if the rest of the interface is easy and quick to navigate.

While there’s no cure for the horribly slow hardware button, you can at least make the raise-to-wake a little smoother by enabling “sensitive” reaction speed in the Xiaomi Wear app, which makes the wrist gesture much more reliable. That said, we’re essentially left with a watch that’s not so good at the one job every watch should do: showing you the current time at a glance. There is also no always-on option to fix this problem.


Redmi Watch 2 Lite 13

Fitness Tracking – Running

Fitness tracking has been fairly reliable in my experience, thanks in part to the built-in GPS module. The watch reliably tracks my walks and bike rides, and even helps me with my bodyweight workouts by helping me keep an eye on my heart rate. However, the background tracking doesn’t seem to be as reliable as the Mi Band 6, which I particularly noticed with my sleep stats. On several occasions, the watch failed to tell the difference between lying awake in bed and actually sleeping.

In contrast to Wear OS smartwatches or the Apple Watch, the battery life is excellent. Using the watch’s default settings and some light fitness tracking (with higher-intensity vibrations being the only derivative of the default settings), I got close to two weeks of battery life. Your mileage may vary if you increase the heart rate monitoring interval and turn on SpO2 tracking or stress level detection, but I’m confident you should still be able to get by for a week even if you opt for a more strenuous setup. If you frequently track your daily runs, things can quickly look different. Xiaomi rates the Redmi Watch 2 Lite with up to 14 hours of continuous GPS tracking.

app and features

The Redmi Watch 2 Lite comes bundled with the Xiaomi Wear app. If you’ve previously used the Mi Fit app with another wearable, you can transfer your fitness stats to the new app – they’re compatible that way. Overall, the Xiaomi Wear app looks sleek and gives you a comprehensive overview of your workout history, although navigation is a bit unintuitive. Settings for wearables are hidden in the poorly named profile tab, which is scattered across various submenus. To access some advanced settings for the app itself, you have to tap the plus button in the top right corner, which I would associate more with adding a new device than settings, but no, that button is actually for both thought things .

The app is also the heart when it comes to syncing notifications. Depending on your phone and its battery saving features, the process can get quite tedious. Luckily, Xiaomi has included instructions for the most popular phones with the app, asking you to either pin Xiaomi Wear in your Recents overview or disable any battery saving measures imposed on it in your phone’s system settings. Since everything was set up correctly, I didn’t encounter any missed notifications.

Again, we need to put a big, bold warning here. During setup, the Redmi Watch offers a QR code to download the Xiaomi Wear app, which redirects you to an APK available outside of the Play Store. Given that the app is readily available on the Play Store, I’m confused as to why Xiaomi would offer this distribution channel outside of the approved and easily accessible default setting. While it’s unlikely that anything is fishy, ​​we recommend getting the app from the Play Store rather than Xiaomi’s own website.

should you buy it

Yes, if you want a basic smartwatch on a budget. The Redmi Watch 2 Lite is by no means a high-end device, but it might be for you if you don’t care about apps, payment functions or an always-on display. The watch easily does its fitness tracking in the background, and you can use raise-to-wake to see the time whenever you need it. It will also prevent you from missing important messages, at least if you have notifications set up correctly in the app and the watch. Just make sure to download the companion app from the Play Store – you don’t have to get it from Xiaomi’s source.

Buy if…

  • You want a smartwatch with great battery life
  • You don’t want to spend a three-digit amount on a smartwatch

Don’t buy it if…

  • You need super accurate fitness tracking
  • They want quality of life features like contactless payments and third-party apps

Redmi Watch 2 Lite 4

We hope you enjoy the items we have recommended and reviewed! AndroidPolice has affiliated and sponsored partnerships, so we receive a portion of the revenue from some of your purchases. This does not affect the price and helps us to offer the best product recommendations.


About the author

Share.

Comments are closed.