A new leak suggests that the forthcoming Xiaomi Mi Band 5 fitness tracker will feature a raft of new features that could make it a super-affordable alternative to activity bands from the likes of Fitbit and Garmin.
According to TizenHelp, a site specializing in wearable news, the Mi Band 5 will feature an SPO2 sensor for measuring blood oxygen concentration while you sleep, menstrual cycle tracking, and Amazon Alexa support for controlling your smart home devices with voice commands.
We've already heard that the Mi Band 5 will feature global NFC (a feature that was previously only available in China) for contactless payments, and these tools combined would make it a very tempting proposition for anyone looking for a budget-friendly fitness tracker.
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TizenHelp doesn't reveal the identity of the leaker (only referring to them as 'a member') so these specifications should be taken with a pinch of salt, but if accurate they would be a big step up from the Mi Band 4 – and would be particularly impressive if the new fitness tracker has a similar retail price.
The Mi Band 4 launched at a super affordable $39.99 / £34.99 / AU$59, and its price has dropped even lower since its launch in June 2019. For comparison, the Fitbit Inspire HR currently retails for around $90 / £70 / AU$150, and lacks both NFC payments and a color screen.
Judging from the (very small) screen grabs posted by TizenHelp, it seems that the Mi Band 5 may not have a substitute for Fitbit's various exercise modes, but if Xiaomi can keep the price down, that might be a sacrifice casual users are willing to make.
Sadly there's no sign of onboard GPS, which is a feature we'd hoped to see in the new Xiaomi fitness tracker. It's also hard to tell whether it may feature automatic activity tracking, which makes Fitbit's wearables a great choice for anyone who tends to be a little absent minded and forgets to start tracking their workout before hitting the pool or the pavement.
The Mi Band 5 might surprise us, though. Hopefully we'll receive official details from Xiaomi soon, together with a release date. If the company sticks with its traditional mid-year release schedule, that could be very soon.