Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 vs Huawei Band 6 vs Honor Band 6: feature comparison

It is fair to say we are spoilt for choice these days when it comes to budget activity trackers. Such devices are gradually catching up to their pricier counterparts. You no longer need to spend an arm and a leg for a decent fitness monitoring solution. And it’s only going to get better from here.

Three of the most recent additions to this space are the Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6, Huawei Band 6 and Honor Band 6. What all three have common is a big screen display. Some of these are even starting to blur the lines between fitness bands and smartwatches.

How exactly does the trio compare? Read on to find out.


Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 vs Huawei Band 6 vs Honor Band 6: General and hardware

Of the three, Honor Band 6 was the first one out. It made its debut in Asia late last year, and saw a global launch in March. Following lots of leaks and rumors, the Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 landed shortly after. The last of the bunch was Huawei Band 6. This one is essentially a rebranded version of the Honor Band 6. Or maybe it’s the other way around.

For those not in the know, Huawei and Honor have split late last year. But the company’s wearables are still using the same app and there’s little to separate their wearables in terms of design and functionality. No doubt this will change going forward. Which means that this article is essentially a comparison between the Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 versus the other two. That’s how similar the Honor and Huawei bands are.

Big-screen display

The most striking feature of all three of these is their big screen display. The Mi Smart Band 6 has a 1.56 inch AMOLED with 326 PPI (pixels per inch) or 152 x 486 pixels. This is the third successive year Xiaomi has increased the Mi Band display size. The interesting thing is that the company has managed to keep the dimensions of the wearable pretty much the same all this time. In this latest iteration, the bezel around the edges is tiny.

As impressive as this is, Honor and Huawei have taken the big screen idea further. Their wearables come with a 1.47-inch display. But while the Xiaomi device retains the look of a classic fitness band, the Huawei and Honor look a bit like a smartwatch. That’s because they are much wider than a typical fitness band.

Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 vs Huawei Band 6 vs Honor Band 6: feature comparison
Honor Band 6 vs Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6

What you also get on the Honor and Huawei is a physical button that acts to wake up the display and acts as a shortcut. You combine this with the touch display to navigate the menus. All of this works well as we found out in our Honor Band 6 review. On the Xiaomi you’ll need to rely purely on the touchscreen as there is no physical button.

Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 vs Huawei Band 6 vs Honor Band 6: feature comparison

Honor Band 6
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Fitbit Ionic or Garmin Vivoactive 3: which to get?

Water-resistance has not changed from the previous generation of these devices. There’s no need to. The 5 ATM rating will suffice for most people. It is only if you are a deep-sea diver that you need something better. But then you’ll probably be opting for a sports watch.

Other than that you get a polycarbonate build which is common to all budget fitness bands. This is attached to a silicone band that can be picked up in a variety of colors.

Huawei Band 6 borrows a lot from the Honor Band 6
Huawei Band 6

Sensors, battery life

A far as the underlying tech, there is little to separate the trio. They all have a 3-axis accelerometer and 3-axis gyroscope, along with a PPG heart rate and SpO2 sensor.

Next up is the all-important battery life. The Xiaomi has a 125mAh battery versus the 180mAh that can be found on the other ones. However, all three are good for up to two weeks on a single charge.

Here’s an overview illustrating the similarities and differences in design and hardware.

Xiaomi Mi Band 6
Huawei Band 6
Honor Band 6
 
Case material
polycarbonate, silicone wristband, Aluminum alloy buckle
polycarbonate, silicone wristband
polycarbonate, silicone wristband
Display size
1.56 inch
1.47-inch
1.47-inch
Display resolution
152 x 486 pixels
194 x 368 pixels
194 x 368 pixels
Display type
AMOLED (450 nits brightness)
AMOLED coloured 2.5D display
AMOLED coloured 2.5D display
Dimensions
47.4 x 18.6 x 12.7mm
43 x 25.4 x 11.45mm
43 x 25.4 x 11.45mm
Water-resistance
5ATM
5ATM
5ATM
Weight
13 grams (without wristband)
18 grams (without wristband)
18 grams (without wristband)
Sensors
6-axis sensor: Low power-consumption 3-axis accelerometer and 3-axis gyroscope, PPG heart rate sensor, SpO2
6-axis accelerometer, gyroscope, SpO2, heart rate sensor
6-axis accelerometer, gyroscope, SpO2, heart rate sensor
NFC
Yes (China only)
Yes (China only)
Yes (China only)
Battery life
Up to 14 days (125 mAh LiPo battery)
Up to 14 days (180 mAh battery)
Up to 14 days (180 mAh battery)
Colors
Black, Orange, Yellow, Olive, Ivory, Blue
Amber Sunrise, Forest Green and Graphite Black
Coral Pink & Sandstone grey
Connectivity
BT5.0 BLE
BT5.0 BLE
BT5.0 BLE
RRP
$55
$60
$50

Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 vs Huawei Band 6 vs Honor Band 6: Functionality

Let’s get the difference between the Huawei Band 6 and Honor Band 6 out of the way first. It pretty much comes down to the SpO2 sensor. The Huawei wearable tracks your blood oxygen levels around the clock, no need to push any buttons. The Honor Band 6 only does this on demand.

Other than that, the only other difference we can spot between the two is more sports modes on the Huawei. It comes with a total of 96 versus the 10 on the Honor Band. Of this, 11 are pre-set on the device. The other 85 can be downloaded via the smartphone app.

The Mi Smart Band 6 is somewhere in between with a total of 30 sports modes. Six of these are with auto-recognition.

It’s worth pointing out that none of these devices have built-in GPS. So you’ll need to tap into your smartphone connection to take advantage of Connected GPS.

The Xiaomi also tracks Personal Activity Intelligence, better known as PAI. This helps you quantify your activity level by how hard your heart rate worked during the day.

Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 vs Huawei Band 6 vs Honor Band 6: feature comparison

Xiaomi Mi Band 6
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Fitbit Ionic or Garmin Vivoactive 3: which to get?

The company says it has improved the accuracy of its stats. Sleep tracking now includes sleep breathing quality through the blood oxygen sensor. This has the potential to spot Sleep Apnea.

The rest of the fitness tracking smarts are similar between the three devices. You’ll find most things you need to monitor your health and fitness around the clock. The obvious missing feature is an altimeter for counting floors climbed. But it’s rare that you will find this on a budget activity tracker. But you do get the usuals, including stress tracking on all of these.

The non-fitness features are also standard. They include notifications for calls and messages and the function to mute incoming calls, lots of band faces, app notifications, music controls, alarm, find my phone and more. The three also all offer an optional NFC edition but this will probably be for the Chinese region only.

Xiaomi Mi Band 6
Huawei Band 6
Honor Band 6
 
Number of sports modes
30 (6 with auto-recognition)
96 (6 with auto-recognition)
10 (6 with auto-recognition)
SpO2
On-demand
24/7
On-demand
PAI
Yes
No
No

Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 vs Huawei Band 6 vs Honor Band 6: Bottom line

It is a close call when it comes to choosing between the trio. The Huawei and Honor bands are practically the same. The main difference is that SpO2 is tracked around the clock on the first, and only on-demand on the second. If you want a very big screen display but are not ready for a smartwatch they represent a good choice.

Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 vs Huawei Band 6 vs Honor Band 6: feature comparison

Huawei Band 6
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Fitbit Ionic or Garmin Vivoactive 3: which to get?

The Xiaomi Mi Smart band has been a popular seller for years. This sixth iteration slaps on SpO2 measurements and a larger display. So this is an iterative upgrade which makes the fitness band slightly better than before.

With some nuances, all three of these provide pretty much the same functionality. So it pretty much comes down to design choice and brand loyalty.

The price might also feature in your decision. The Xiaomi sells for around $55 (check price on Amazon). The Honor Band 6 can be picked up right now for around $50 (check price on Amazon, Aliexpress). The Huawei Band 6 is slightly more expensive at around $90 (Check price on Amazon).

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5 thoughts on “Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 6 vs Huawei Band 6 vs Honor Band 6: feature comparison

  • year over year advertising sport feature but not even 1 (one!!!) serious comparison with dedicated products like garmin or polar.

    Reply
  • Another major drawback for Huawei Band 6 and Honor Band 6 is that the strap can’t be removed or replaced. If it get broken then goodluck, buy a new band.

    Reply
    • this is incorrect. Bands could be replaced. I just interchanged the bands from my mom’s to mine.

      Reply
    • I just replaced my strap. It is easy.

      Reply
  • I would like these reviews to describe ease of syncing, quality of desktop/phone app and past reliability.
    I have found fitbit to have excellent functionality but very poor syncing performance and very short lifespan.

    Reply

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