Redmi Watch 3 & Band 2 pack large displays & decent health tracking

The next two Redmi fitness devices have launched today. This includes Watch 3 and Band 2 which have landed alongside a few other products. All of this was revealed at the Redmi 2023 New Year conference in China.

It was not a huge mystery as far as what to expect. And if there was any doubt, Redmi shared a few poster teasers on its social media channels in the past few days

The pictures depicted Watch 2, Band 2 and Redmi Buds 4. Alongside these, we also got Redmi K60 series phones.

Redmi Watch 3 – a more premium looking device

Redmi Watch 3 looks like a more premium version of the predecessor generation. Mind you, It still takes on a square shape with a single button to the left. So in that sense – it remains an Apple Watch lookalike.

A major upgrade of last year’s second generation model was a bigger 1.6 inch AMOLED display. The original only had a 1.4 inch IPS LCD. The other big improvement came in the form of built-in GNSS (GPS, BeiDou, GLONASS, GALILEO) instead of Connected GPS.

This year the upgrade came in the form of an even bigger 1.75-inch high-definition AMOLED screen. The screen-to-body ratio of Redmi Watch 3 has increased to 70%. The screen resolution is 390 x 450, while the pixel density is 341PPI. The display’s refresh rate of 60Hz and peak brightness of 600nits ensures that everyting is easily readable both indoors and out.

To take advantage of the improved display, there are around 200 watch-dial options. This is significantly up on last year. Some of these dials are for the optional always-on display.

Redmi Watch 3

Mind you, the lightweight design is still there and the net weight of the watch comes in only at 37 grams. Its metal texture frame and colorful strap combine for a youthful fashionable appearance.

The sensor list last year was pretty complete for a budget wearable (accelerometer, gyroscope, optical heart rate sensor, SpO2 and ambient light sensor). There is no change there, so the upgrade on Watch 3 was probably in upgrading some of these same to the next version. This should help improve accuracy of captured data. The number of sports modes has been upped to 121 and there’s built-in GNSS to support some of them.

Essential readingBest fitness trackers and health gadgets

Once again the watch runs on a customised RTOS. This offers stripped back smart functionality but has the benefit of allowing for long battery life. The 289mAh battery on Watch 3 can run up to 12 days between charges and a week with heavy use.

The overall performance of the device has been upped thanks to the Apollo4 Plus high-performance platform. Redmi says, this doubles the performance compared to the previous generation (Apollo 3.5) and improves system control and fluency.

Redmi Watch 3 supports BT/BLE dual-mode Bluetooth. In addition, it is equipped with a RealTek independent Bluetooth call chip. The device can be used to answer calls from a connected smartphone (thanks to a built-in microphone and speaker), which can be useful when exercising. In an emergency, you can triple-click the side button to trigger an SOS call to preset contacts.

The timepiece is a popular seller, particularly in China. Some 28,000 units of Watch 2 were shifted in just two hours following the unveiling in November 2021.

We expect this edition to also be in demand. Redmi has a loyal following. No word yet on an international launch but those in China can pick up the watch for 499 yuan (around $70). It comes in a choice between elegant black and ivory white. The strap provides further customization options including sweet orange mint, lime purple taro, and sea salt raw chocolate colors.

Redmi Band 2 – a large display, decent health tracking tech

Moving quickly on to Redmi Band 2 and, once again, we get something fairly similar to the predecessor version. To be more precise, it looks more like Redmi Smart Band Pro, which is a slightly improved iteration of the first generation device.

As Xiaomi and Redmi have close ties, Redmi Band 2 takes on some characteristics from the latest edition of Xiaomi Mi Band. And that’s not just in appearance.

The wearable packs a 1.47 inch display (172 x 320 pixels, TFT LCD screen, 247 PPI, 2.5D curved, 450 nits peak brightness). The screen is is larger than the previous generation’s by a massive 76%. You can pretty it up with a choice of over 100 dial-faces.

There are no buttons so you’ll need to rely on the touch functionality for everything. At only 9.99mm in depth, the device is fairly thin.

Just like Watch 3, Band 2 has a 5 ATM water-resistance rating. The health tracking sensors are pretty much the same, too, but the number of sports modes totals only 30. Also, there is on built-in GPS – only Connected GPS.

Redmi Band 2

The 210mAh cell in Band 2 is good for around two weeks on a single charge. That’s not bad for something with such a large display.

We reviewed Redmi Smart Band Pro last year and walked away pleasantly surprised. The wearable is a good alternative to Xiaomi Mi Band. Its highlight is the beautiful AMOLED display along with long battery life. The fitness tracking is also quite decent.

Redmi Band 2 sells for less than half the price of Watch 3. Only 159 yuan (around $22) is enough to get one of these on your wrist in China in a choice between Midnight Black and Dream White.

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