Work out with the Xiaomi Mi, a step above budget smartwatches but only $122


You can jog on the road well traveled, but you’ll often pay full retail for it. Smartwatches like the Apple Watch Series 6 and Fitbit Sense are great health- and fitness-focused devices, but they’re pretty expensive. At the other end of the spectrum, CNET’s Lexy Savvides has covered the best budget smartwatches under $100. I’ve got some middle ground for you today: The surprisingly fully configured Xiaomi Mi Sports Edition usually sells for $175, but right now you can get the Xiaomi Mi for just $121. That’s within a 20-spot of the $100 price cutoff, but it’s better equipped than most run-of-the-mill watches.

This smartwatch comes from Xiaomi, which is no stranger to wearables or fitness. You have probably heard of a little gadget called the Mi Band, which dates back to 2014 and along with the Fitbit is one of the best-known wearables ever made.

This more modern fitness device does a little of everything — it can track your workouts and has GPS built in so you can leave your phone at home. It reports your heart rate, VO2 Max, recovery time and a handful of other important workout metrics.

Borrowing features from premium (and not so premium) smartwatches, the Mi has sleep tracking and a SpO2 sensor and is waterproof to 5atm. The battery should run for no less than two weeks on a charge.

Would I spent $175 on this watch? No, probably not — there’s no app store, for example, so it looks like you get whatever comes in the box, with little opportunity for growth. And just because Xiaomi manages to tick a bunch of boxes — GPS, VO2 Max, SPO2 and so on — doesn’t mean the watch handles those capabilities elegantly; I’d need to spend some time with it hands-on to say for sure, and I haven’t had that opportunity. CNET hasn’t reviewed the Xiaomi Mi, either, but I’ve scanned reviews — both professional and user — and it’s garnered enough praise that I think it’s a solid value for $121.

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