Fitness tracker / Smart band / Smart watch - Experiences?

There are 6 replies in this Thread which has previously been viewed 479 times. The latest Post () was by serafina.

  • I finally took up going to gym and I have been toying with the idea of getting a wearable device to keep track of exercising / to keep me motivated.

    The rising exchange rate is yet another incentive, as the prices are like in Europe. Luckily for me, there is only a handful of models available in Argentina, therefore, FOMO aside, the choice should be pretty simple.

    However, I am not fully committed to the purchase because the model that is "most sold" on mercadolibre, for however cheap, costs anyway about 50 USD. And because my track record with gyms is pretty poor (one month top). I am eager to read the other forum members' experiences.

    What I have understood so far is:

    1) Fitness tracker / Smart band is the same thing. They are devices you wear 24/7 and keep track of your activity. Some also keep track of your heart rate and SpO2 saturation, sleep pattern, and other parameters that are used to tell about your overall health and performances.

    The cheaper the model, the less accurate one or more measurement. If you want continuous monitoring, the battery will drain pretty fast.

    They all connect to your phone via bluetooth and are a sort of extension of it, meaning that you can get notifications on your wearable.

    2) Smart watches do the same as above, however are more geared toward connectivity, i.e. smartphone usage without using the smartphone, i.e. receiving messages AND replying to it from your watch, being able to take and make calls from your watch, make contactless payments etc., and less on activity (they track SOME exercises, but not all). The price difference is minimal (10-20 USD), and they are slightly bigger in size.

    3) they all interact with an app installed on your phone, which is the authorized app. This app can, in turn, interact with other 3rd party apps or your phone's native apps.

    As I am just a novel going to the gym, I am interested in the amount of calories burned when doing each kind of exercise. Allegedly, the fitness tracker can automatically detect what kind of exercise you are doing based on your movements. I'd like also to see the heart rate as I am curious to find out if I am suffering more than the average man/woman when exercising (I don't like exercising, how do people keep up with it?).

    These are the models I have been looking at:

    Xiaomi Mi Band 7 - 17.100 ARS (about 50 USD) -…ters=category%3AMLA352679

    This is the most sold one on ML, the most recent version from Xiaomi

    Amazfit Charge 5 - 6800 ARS (used, or 10300 ARS new) - https://articulo.mercadolibre.…04-48b1-88fa-ea66d8d28250

    This is the competitor of the Mi Band, and also by Xiaomi. Some comparison say that the Mi Band is better as it tracks more sports and it is more precise. Other than that, they are just about the same, as far as I am concerned.

    I am not considering FitBit Charge 5 (used from 31,000 ARS) as apparently it requires a subscription (10 USD/month) to track heart rate and oxygenation, which I find appalling for the price tag.

  • I have been using an Honor Band since last Christmas

    Smartwatch Honor Band 6 1.47" caja black, malla meteorite black ARG-B39

    Honor Band is made by Huawei. It has worked well. I had  a Fitbit in the past - nice watch but as you say there are many data restrictions

    Mrs GJ has a Xiaomi and she likes it- She has misplaced it over the last week, so we may be buying another one soon! I think it's a Mi Band 5.

    In general, the prices of the Xiaomi and the Huawei models are pretty decent in Argentina and Mercado Libre is the place to buy.

  • I’ve used a fitness tracker for 8 or 9 years, primarily to make sure I maintain a base level of 10k steps per day. It does help - a lot - with positive reinforcement and incentive. My husband likes the bloom pressure and pulse features, but I’ll admit that I rarely if ever look at those. And although I love the idea of checking sleep hours, I haven’t found that function to be at all accurate (if you lie in bed sleepless, those hours show up as hours actually slept). Likewise, I’m skeptical that the calorie-counting function is very accurate on any of the multiple brands I’ve had over the years.

  • My current iPhone (13 Pro) has a fitness tracking function that records the steps/distance and calculates the calories burnt. This is where my curiosity toward activity trackers stem from! I have tried to run on the treadmill at the gym with my phone in a waist-bag worn across my chest just to see how the Apple Fitness app would perform, but it didn't understand I was running (it was also very uncomfortable to run with the waist bag across my chest, so I gave up after two minutes).

    The app I am using to keep track of my eating/calories (Yazio) allows to log in exercises manually, but it is a tedious work because I don't have time to log in every exercise I do at the gym. I may spent 30 minutes at the gym lifting weighs, but I don't actually lift them for 30 minutes. There are sequences and rest periods.


    • Helpful

    After several days of research on Mercadolibre, Instagram and Facebook, I finally bought a refurbished Xiaomi Smart Band 7. I was initially going with a used 6, but after discovering there are many fakes around, I did not wanted to risk buying the wrong one.

    Purchasing technology in Argentina is quite frustrating and a quest, as the price vary widely and daily (if not twice a day), scammers are everywhere, and sometimes the stock is not updated on websites or the price is eventually sensibly different by the time you are about to pay.

    My first shop stop is always Mercadolibre, but given its hefty commission, I usually look on the sellers' websites directly to see if the price is lower. However, sellers' websites are not up to date 99% of the times. For example, I found a Seller selling the smart band on ML, but it was not listed on their website. In another instance, it was shown as out of stock.

    I finally narrowed it down to two shops that had physical address on their website and were within 30 mins by car from me - I was hoping to find a better deal by buying cash on-site. However, when I had finally made up my mind, the price had increased. For a week, I put in the same search on ML and I kept getting different prices from the ML app and from the websites. Sometimes the app showed a great price (like 15-16k ARS), but when I tried to complete the purchase I got an error -- I learned that this means that the prices has changed.

    I was determined to buy a smart band before the end of the year because God knows what the price will be in Jan, after this last week over 350.

    There is a new function on ML that shows the direct comparison of all sellers for a given item. This is alike to Amazon and it was introduced recently, I think ( Splinter will know for sure!).

    Eventually, I sent my husband to one of the stores. Their website showed the item for sale at $17.999, with the option to get 5% off if paying cash or 10% off if paying by bank transfer or deposit. My husband didn't feel comfortable depositing money on their account without going there in person. When he went to their address (it had great Google reviews, by the way), it was just a house. He called the phone number as it was supposed to be open since 10 and the guy said he was running late and to come at 11.30, and that he needed to check the stock on the Xiaomi Smart Band 7.

    At 11.40 he called my husband saying he was about to arrive and that the price was $18.000 cash or $19.800 with any other payment method. My husband asked about the 5% discount for paying cash mentioned on their website and the seller said that it was not available. At that point, after waiting almost 2 hours for a guy that wasn't holding up what was written on his own website, I told my hubby to come home and that I'd buy it for $17.999 on ML with the (re)assurance it implies. It wasn't for the price, but for the unprofessional behavior of the seller. Perhaps he was reliable, but I didn't feel he deserved my money after juggling with my husband's time for two hours.

    When my husband came back, I was ready to buy it on ML. Then I run one last search for a used Xiaomi Smart Band 7, for the sake of it. Much to my surprise, a refurbished one from a reliable seller popped up for $13.999 (or 40 USD, based on my last exchange). It was discounted because it had a couple of scratches on the screen -- something it would eventually get, so I was fine with it. It also had same day delivery - on a Friday (12/30!) at 1 PM!

    I rushed to the PagoFácil to pay and at 5 PM it was delivered to my door. Amazing!

    I have been playing with it and I am very happy, so far. I tried it today at the gym for the first time. I wasn't able to wear it during sleep last night because I didn't know I had to set it up to mute notifications (vibration) from the phone after a certain hour, and because it was lightning on every time I moved my wrist while sleeping, waking me up.

    I hope I will do better tonight.