For the last few years Xiaomi has largely done its own thing in the smartwatch space, but that’s changing with the new Xiaomi Watch 2 Pro. This new slice of wrist-worn tech is set to launch globally with Google’s WearOS operating system, instead of the firm’s MIUI, meaning far better third-party app support and a full feature list no matter what Android smartphone is in your pocket.
Launched alongside the Xiaomi 13T Pro smartphone and Xiaomi Smart Band 8 at a global launch event in Berlin, the Watch 2 Pro has a 1.43in circular AMOLED screen, set into a stainless steel case and paired with either a leather or fluororubber strap. There’s a rotating digital crown and shortcut button at the side, and it’s got a bunch of suitably stylish watch faces to pick from.
Power comes from a Snapdragon Wear W5+ Gen 1, which is Qualcomm’s newest and speediest mobile chipset. We’ve seen it in action inside the Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 5, where its responsiveness and power efficiency were really quite impressive. The Xiaomi Watch 2 Pro doesn’t have a clever dual-screen setup to help extend battery life, but the firm is confident of all-day use between charges.
There’s more than 150 sport, exercise and activity modes to keep you fit, with dual-band GNSS location tracking and all the usual health monitoring sensors. Because it’s running Google’s WearOS, you’ll also get access to Google Wallet contactless payments, Google Maps and Google Assistant.
UK prices are set to start at £230 for the Bluetooth version, or £280 for an LTE version with built-in e-SIM. As with the rest of Xiaomi’s product line, there’s currently no plan to bring the Watch 2 Pro to US customers. It’ll be going on sale soon, although an exact date is still TBC.
Meanwhile, the Xiaomi Smart Band 8 stays more fitness-focused, with a slim 1.62in oblong AMOLED display set into a metal-effect frame in either gold or black colours. It’s protected by Gorilla Glass 3, and promises 5ATM water resistance. A quick-release design should make it easy to swap out straps, with leather braided, checkered, double wrap, and stainless-steel chains all on offer. If that all sounds rather flamboyant, don’t panic: there are more subtle options too.
Battery capacity has grown to 190mAh over the outgoing model, which Xiaomi says is good enough for as much as 16 days of use per charge. It only needs one hour for a full top-up, too.
Health and fitness features includes all-day heart rate and SpO2 monitoring, sleep tracking and menstrual cycle prediction, plus 150 sports and activities to record. A ‘Pebble Mode’ even lets you remove the wrist strap and attach the unit to a shoe buckle, for posture detection when running.
The Xiaomi Smart Band 8 will set you back £40. Early birds can back a £5 discount on other Xiaomi tech if they order before the 28th of September, directly from the Mi website.