Xiaomi Mi Band 7 Pro review: an uninvited guest in the Mi Band family

Content

  1. Equipment and design
  2. Software
  3. user experience,
    performance and autonomy
  4. findings

The first Xiaomi Mi Band was a strange capsule withlight bulbs. Over time, he acquired a screen, first black and white, then color; first without a wheelbarrow, then touch; first small, then the size of the entire capsule. Well, this year Xiaomi decided to go further and release the Pro version of Xiaomi Mi Band 7 Pro, which has become almost a watch - 44.7 x 28.8 mm with a display diagonal of 1.64″. What kind of product did you end up with? Now let's figure it out.

But first, a small disclaimer.Mi Band 7 and Mi Band 7 Pro are completely different devices, developed independently and working in completely different ways. Nothing that is said in this review can be automatically transferred to the Mi Band 7. This is how I kick my colleagues from Andro-News who wrote the “review of Mi Band 7 and Mi Band 7 Pro” without having the second model in their hands. Of course, they did not guess any of its features.

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Specifications of Xiaomi Smart Band 7 Pro
Screen 1.64″, 456×280 pixels, 14.7:9, 326 ppi, AOD
Battery 235 mAh
Charging Magnetic
Wireless interfaces Bluetooth 5.2
GPS, GLONASS, Beidou, Galileo, QZSS
NFC there is
Sensors Pedometer
heart rate monitor
Pulse Oximeter
Sound Microphone only
Water protection 5 ATM
Dimensions and weight 44.7 x 28.8 x 11 mm
20.5g (without strap)
Straps 130-205 mm

    Equipment and design

    Xiaomi Mi Band 7 Pro (or, as it officiallycalled and as no one calls it, Xiaomi Smart Band 7 Pro) comes in a small black box with a standard kit: the bracelet itself, charging and a small instruction. In Chinese, but with pictures, so it's generally understandable.

    The bracelet is available with black and gold frames.There are many different straps to choose from. On our test, of course, the most boring option, but you can find something more fun for yourself. And if you still get bored - change the strap. True, they have a very peculiar mount here, and so far fans have not found a single model of smart or classic watch, the straps of which would be compatible with the Mi Band 7 Pro. So you have to look for accessories specifically for the “firmware”. Well, once again I draw your attention to the fact that there is no longer a capsule that is inserted into the strap, as it has always been with Mi Band, but a case to which halves of the strap cling to on both sides - that is, a standard watch design.

    The design of the Mi Band has always been veryminimalistic, nothing much has changed here. In addition, of course, that the gadget has become much wider, and now it is already a full-fledged watch. There is nothing on the front panel except the screen, the left end is empty, on the right there is only a microphone. It is needed only for requests to the voice assistant; talking on Mi Band 7 Pro will not work, because there is no speaker here. Behind - a magnetic charging connector and bulbs of various sensors. Case material - plastic, on the ends there is a metal coating NCVM.

    The watch screen has a diagonal of 1.64″, the resolution is456x280 (14.7:9). The pixel density is the classic 326 ppi, the panel is made using AMOLED technology. There is auto-brightness, it works very well, I have never had problems reading information on the street or, on the contrary, situations when the screen hits my eyes indoors. Thin fonts look a little chopped on the display, there is a feeling that Xiaomi did not bring subpixel anti-aliasing support here; however, readability on the street only benefits from this. I did not have any problems with the tachim for the entire time of use.

    Software

    Xiaomi Mi Band 7 Pro runs on proprietaryfirmware, installation of third-party applications is not provided. By default, the list of software is as follows: workouts (8 main types and dozens of auxiliary ones), training log, activity statistics, running (ready-made training programs), pulse, oxygenation, sleep, stress, breathing, cycle tracking, voice assistant (understands English, but answers Chinese text), weather, NFC cards, calendar, player control, camera control, alarm clock, do not disturb mode, stopwatch, timer, flashlight (screen), phone search, Alipay, WeChat, manual and settings.

    The list of applications opens with a swipe up fromdial; it is not looped, that is, you can return back to the dial either by scrolling up or by swiping back (swipe on the left). A swipe down opens a list of notifications (as before, they cannot be deleted one at a time, only all together), a swipe to the right opens a curtain with switches. Finally, a left swipe opens the widget flip (which is also not looped). Some widgets are able to go to the corresponding application by tapu. True, it is implemented crookedly. For example, the stats widget looks exactly like the top screen of the stats app, so nothing seems to happen when tapped. However, until you tap, you cannot scroll the application (this is a widget, not an application), and after tapping, you cannot scroll widgets (this is an application, not a widget). It is necessary to make a “back” gesture (according to which, again, nothing seems to happen), and only then scroll through the widgets. Intuitive!

    The watch face change menu, as before, openslong tap on the dial. True, now there is no option to customize the dial, although Mi Band 6 had it - you could customize what information is displayed in special areas of the screen. Although most of the Mi Band 7 Pro watch faces do not display any information at all, I could hardly find at least one in the catalog where there is a filling circle for the number of steps. This is not the only simplification in Mi Band 7 Pro compared to Mi Band 6 - Swipe to Unlock is lost (but you can set a PIN code, thank you), there is no viewing of activity statistics for previous days, there is no auto-pause in training.

    From the phone side for synchronization with Mi Band 7Pro is suggested to use the Mi Fitness app. Not the good old Mi Fit (it is unclear for what sins it was renamed Zepp Life), namely Mi Fitness, formerly known as Xiaomi Wear. It is much prettier than Zepp Life, but functionally inferior to it. There are fewer settings, and the training view screens are implemented worse. Here, for example, is my bike test ride:

    What do we see?First, the map simply does not open. The geotrack should be viewed over the gray grid. Secondly, the track is colored according to the speed of movement, but this coloring is simply not true. If you believe her, at the initial stage I was driving either slowly or quickly, but the speed chart shows that for the first 10 minutes my speed was always much lower than average - where did the red segments come from then? The speed histogram is nicely done, but for the final 870 meters instead of the average speed, for some reason, the travel time is indicated. Finally, the height profile is completely missing! But really, what could be of interest to a cyclist?

    By the way, this is what the workout looks like.exotic type - equestrian sport. Of course, I did not sit any horse, I just wanted to know what specific indicators are considered in this type of training. It turned out none. And in other types from the "More" section, which I tried, also none. But how many things could be counted with the help of an accelerometer! I'm not very good at equestrian sports, but I think that at least the statistics of taking obstacles in show jumping could be kept. Yes, and gaits to distinguish. So when a manufacturer brags about the next tens/hundreds of sports modes, you know - they just added items to the menu. No effort, no benefit.

    If in spite of all this you are stillconsidering switching from the old Mi Band to 7 Pro, then now I will take a control shot. The function of transferring data from Zepp Life to Mi Fitness is useless. To connect a Chinese bracelet to Mi Fitness, you need to set the region = China in the settings. But you cannot transfer data from Russian Zepp Life accounts to foreign Mi Fitness accounts - it is written that it is prohibited by law. Most likely, we are talking about the 242-FZ of 2014, requiring the storage of personal data of Russians in Russia. The craftsmen have not yet come up with a workaround for this limitation; maybe in time it will be found.

    User experience, performance and autonomy

    We don't often talk about "performance" inin the context of fitness bracelets, but I cannot help but note that the weak processor underlying the Mi Band 7 Pro cannot cope with a 127,680-pixel screen. Lags are literally everywhere. But, probably, this is better than the useless autonomy of more productive watches - Mi Band 7 Pro can work for about 4 days with Always-On Display enabled and automatic monitoring of sleep, stress, heart rate and oxygenation, and up to two weeks if all this is turned off. With constant GPS training, the bracelet can last more than 5 hours, which is also a good result. This combination of lags and good autonomy reminded me of the first Huawei Watch GT.

    In general, despite everything described in the previoussection, my experience with Xiaomi Mi Band 7 Pro is quite positive. Mainly, I liked two improvements. The first is Always-On Display. Looking at the clock and knowing the time is very logical. No more Raise-to-Wake, working through time, and taps on the screen. Really convenient.

    Secondly, the presence of built-in GPS.I love tracking my cycling and even walking trips, but I don’t want to wait for synchronization with the phone every time, and it works askew and crooked (in Zepp Life it became necessary to turn on a permanent notification in the blind so that the geotrack was written without the phone screen on). So the ability to track walks without a phone is just happiness. In addition, the built-in GPS is very good - I can not thoroughly check the track with a non-working map backing, but it looks as plausible as possible. The frequency of recording coordinates is much higher than that of the Mi Band 6, which gives much greater accuracy.

      findings

      As I said, I liked the innovationsXiaomi Mi Band 7 Pro - GPS and Always-On Display. The format of a narrow bracelet is closer to me, but it’s easy to get used to the big screen of the firmware. Lags are not a problem: I called Huawei Watch GT the best smartwatch in the world, despite them, and now I won’t swear. But the degradation of the software - both the device itself and the companion application - is difficult to put up with. Especially against the background of the “basic” Mi Band 7, where all the branded chips of the line are in place, and Zepp Life is still used for synchronization. If you have never had a Xiaomi bracelet and want an inexpensive smartwatch, then the Smart Band 7 Pro might be a good buy. But if you are looking for a replacement for your old Mi Band, then you should not look at the firmware.

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      © Oleg Lazarev.