Xiaomi killer? Honor Band 5 review

Xiaomi and Honor compete with each other both in the speed of release of new versions of smart bracelets, and in their

opportunities. As soon as the shelves were empty after the release of Honor Band 4, Xiaomi introduced its Mi Band 4 (we have its review), and Honor, in turn, launched its Band 5. Editorial gg already managed to get acquainted with the device.

What it is?

A smart bracelet with a color AMOLED display thatknows how to count steps, tracks nine types of sports activities, monitors sleep and heart rate. The key difference between this model and its predecessor is the measurement of the level of oxygen in the blood. The Ukrainian price for the device is 1400 UAH.

What does he look like?

In appearance, there are many competitorsin common, and also the Honor Band 5 has a lot in common with Honor Band 4. More precisely, the cases of the two generations are identical, the design of fonts and icons, as well as the material of the strap, have changed.

The bracelet closes with a graduated strapa few millimeters. It is convenient to choose the optimal size. But about the material of the strap in this model, I had an ambiguous impression. On the one hand, it seems cheaper, tougher and more plastic (the Band 4 was felt closer to silicone). On the other hand, this one is very tenacious, it’s hard to unfasten the bracelet, even if you really want and need it, and by chance - never at all. Band 4 used to be unfastened.

On the front panel of the Honor Band 5 in addition to the largeThe display has only the touch key “Home”. It recognizes two types of clicks - short and long. Long, for example, to complete a workout or stop the alarm. Short - to postpone the alarm, return to the main menu and turn on the screen, etc.

At the back are charging contacts and a heart rate sensor. The charging device, traditionally, needs a separate one. But with the previous generation it is compatible. Unlike Xiaomi, the Honor bracelet does not need to be taken out of the strap, which is, firstly, more convenient, and secondly, more practical - less likely that the strap will quickly die.

In general, the appearance of Band 5 is typical for suchclass of devices, it looks neat, but not to say that as an expensive accessory. The comparison with the first generations of Samsung fitness bracelets, in which there was a lot of gloss, suggests itself. This model is more likely an ordinary soldier in a well-tailored uniform.

How much does he work?

Band 5's battery capacity is 195 mAh. I have all the features of the device turned on to the fullest - constant heart rate monitoring, the most accurate monitoring of sleep. In this mode, he worked on a single charge for about a week. The manufacturer promises up to 12 days, but this is apparently at a minimum.

Speaking of charging. If you are in a hurry somewhere, but the charge is running out, you can put the device for 10 minutes, it will gain about 10%, and you can already live with it, even enough to track a workout for one and a half to two hours. Or for a day's work.

Is the screen good?

A great. This is an AMOLED with a diagonal of 0.95 inches and a resolution of 120x240 pixels. It is covered by 2.5D curved reinforced glass, which is at least no less durable than in the previous generation (I did not scratch the Honor Band 4 for eight months). An oleophobic coating could be better, but at a minimum acceptable level it is. The screen is bright. On the street, I did not change the brightness settings from the default settings (⅗ of the maximum). It responds to clicks quickly and sensitively.

The colors are juicy, the dials in the bracelet menu are eightpieces, there are those that only show time, there are - steps spent during calorie activity, distance. But if this is not enough, there are several dozens in the application, although they are more about design and fan than utility.

What can he do?

In the fifth generation model, the interface design has slightly changed, the icons have become richer, brighter. But it seemed to me that the interface began to jerk when moving between screens.

The Honor Band 5 is equipped with a 6-axis motion sensor. He recognizes nine types of sports: running on the street and on the track, walking on the street and some other kind of walking that did not find a signature in the interface, an exercise bike, an orbitreck, a rowing machine, swimming in the pool (by the way, it can withstand diving to a depth of 50 m) and free training. Moreover, in each of the specific sports, he only tracks the pulse, the duration of the workout, calories burned and some other typical little things. Detailing is only for running and walking on the street. There in the application you can see the average speed, average frequency and length of steps. There are no such details in the orbit track or rowing machine mode. If you forgot to enable tracking training - you can add it after the fact. Another application gives a detailed report on the pulse during a workout with a breakdown into five modes.

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Modes can be set individually in the “I” section.

Also, the application shows all paired with itdevices (by coincidence, I had two), they can be configured separately. To set up is to set an alarm clock, a dial, a mode for monitoring sleep, heart rate, notifications, weather, and everything else.

I like that Honor bracelets even catchAwakening at night, when you do not seem to move and generally lie awake, and they are taken into account in statistics. At the same time, the phases of deep sleep look suspicious. Xiaomi's sensitivity, on the contrary, is lower. That is, the phases of deep sleep are longer, but he may not notice the awakenings. It happened that the Honor Band 5 considered going to the cinema an easy dream. But basically, I’m rather pleased with his monitoring than not. I find a lot of interesting things for myself, for example, that the duration of the deep sleep phase is related to the time of falling asleep. Or with silence in the room. That is, these devices for people who have problems with sleep, and they would like to understand them, should be useful as a guide.

I used a bracelet paired with twodevices. One is a mid-range smartphone and the second is a basic one on Android Go. So, on the second, for some reason, TruSleep mode went into failure from time to time. This is such a more detailed sleep monitoring mode, which takes into account the time of light, fast and deep.

The bracelet has a “smart alarm clock” that you canset up at intervals at a specific time. For example, you need to wake up at 9:00, but the alarm may work 20 minutes earlier if the sleep phase is appropriate. But at the same time it works even when the user has woken up for a long time and even walks, runs, etc. To be honest, I do not notice the benefits of such alarms, so I can not assess the quality of work. It seemed to me that it worked at the same time, sometimes 10 minutes later.

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In the application menu there is a section with medals - forthose who lack their motivation. And to get some is a task at the level of practically impossible. A marathon or a super marathon, for example. Or a bike ride of 100 km. The “My Achievements” section shows all the statistics that the bracelet collected. I was surprised to learn that in 10 days she burned calories for “14.2 chicken legs”. Interesting unit, sorry too abstract.

The main difference between this model and the previous one isthe presence of the function of measuring oxygen in the blood. Simultaneously with oxygen, the pulse is also measured. For oxygen, the norm is from 90% to 100%, if less - it’s worth moving, and if less than 70% - consult a doctor. Measurement is started on the device; this data cannot be found in the application menu. As far as I understand, statistics on them are not kept. There are no measurements in automatic mode either.

In addition, the bracelet menu has such functions,as a stopwatch and timer, unlike the previous model, this allows you to count not only hours and minutes, but also seconds. Using Honor Band 5, you can search for a phone, view notifications from a smartphone (applications are selected in the settings). The duration of the backlight can also be controlled from the device menu. And through the application menu, turn on movement reminders every hour.

What are the alternatives?

The two main competitors of this model are Xiaomi MiBand 4 and Honor Band 4. I wrote about the differences from the previous generation in the review. Personally, I like smart bracelets of this brand, but for me the innovations in the fifth generation of the bracelet are not so critical, you can pay for them, or you can do it, the update itself is pass-through and looks more like marketing - release a model with a larger index in the name than competitor.

Xiaomi Mi Band 4 is an interesting device, andto choose between the two, in my opinion, is more difficult. I prefer the Honor interface - both the bracelet and the application, as well as sleep tracking. With physical activity, everything is not so simple. Mi Band 4 counts more calories at the beginning of a workout and counts more steps, but overall counts less per hour. I was more likely to trust the Honor bracelet, but it used to count more than 1000 calories in an hour of intense training, which is already an overwhelming amount. On the side of Mi Band 4 - the best autonomy (once every two) and music control.

In the dry residue

I generally like Honor smart bracelets. But this update is more of a marketing thing and an occasion to take a closer look at the previous generation in the lineup, which will probably throw off several hundred hryvnias after the release of the “five”. I now use the bracelet of this brand as the main one, I am satisfied with the interface and monitoring quality, but I'm not sure that the oxygen sensor and a couple of new training modes, in which there is no detailing of specific activity, is an occasion to upgrade or buy a more expensive model.

2 reasons to buy Honor Band 5:

  • Are you a fan of the Huawei / Honor brand and are considering a smart bracelet?
  • you have an older than the “four” generation of Huawei / Honor bracelets, it's time to upgrade, and you want to stay with the brand (and the application).

2 reasons not to buy Honor Band 5:

  • Honor Band 4;
  • Xiaomi Mi Band 4.

Honor Band 5 Bracelet Specifications

Dimensions and weight
43x17x12 mm, 23 g

Special features
waterproof, 24-hour heart rate monitoring, TruSleep sleep monitoring, physical activity recognition

touch, 0.95 ″, AMOLED, 240x120 pixels, 2.5D glass

6-axis accelerometer, heart rate monitor, IR sensor

Protection class
protection against water with pressure up to 5 atmospheres

Bluetooth version

lithium polymer, 195 mAh

Working hours
up to 12 days

Android 4.4 / iOS 9.0 and higher

Fitness Bracelet Honor Band 5

Smart bracelet for owners of smartphones Huawei and Honor

An updated version of the Honor Band 4 fitness bracelet. Honor Band 5 is a smart bracelet with a color AMOLED display that can count steps, tracks nine types of sports activities, monitors sleep and heart rate. The key difference between this model and its predecessor is the measurement of the level of oxygen in the blood. A direct competitor to Xiaomi Mi Band 4. Optimal for purchases to owners of Huawei and Honor phones - it uses the “Huawei Health” application for work.

Buy on AliExpress

rival Xiaomi Band 4

For those who want to know more:

  • Xiaomi Mi Band 4 Review: New Standard of Fitness Bracelets
  • Top 7 best fitness bracelets of 2019
  • Xiaomi Mi Band 3 review: three times the hero of smart bracelets
  • Xiaomi Mi Band 2 review: why buy a budget smart bracelet?
  • 10 best selling gadgets on AliExpress


Revision gg thanks the iLounge online store for kindly providing the Honor Band 5 bracelet for this review.