The Xiaomi Mi Band 5 could still be on for a June 2020 release date, after the forthcoming fitness tracker was certified in Taiwan, and rumors of Alexa and an SpO2 sensor landed on the web.
And app screenshots seen by Tizenhelp, show that SpO2, Amazon Alexa and female health tracking is coming to the Mi Band 5.
That came after Xiaomi tipster Xiaomishka uncovered the certification in Taiwan means a release China could be imminent, but it’s likely that will be months ahead of a release in the US or Europe. It’s also rumored it will cost around 199 yuan ($28) in China.
Xiaomi Mi Band 5 – blood oxygen sensor
An SpO2 sensor is something we predicted would make it to the Mi Band 5, and it looks like we wonât be disappointed. Xiaomi has always followed the market, bringing top line sensors to its devices for less cash than its rivals â and SpO2 is now pretty standard across the wearables space.
An SpO2 sensor enables the device to track the oxygen in the blood â and if you apply this to sleep tracking, it can be used to determine conditions such as sleep apnea.
Weâd say thereâs zero chance of the FDA or other bodies approving the use of a Xiaomi SpO2 sensor in this way, but it can be included in the device as long as itâs not used to diagnose conditions.
The Huawei Watch GT 2e has SpO2 as part of its feature set, although it just offers a spot check and not automated during sleep, which is the best implementation. Weâd wager on the same thing happening here.
Could we see Alexa built in?
Amazon Alexa support â something we hadnât expected. Amazon Alexa is coming to the Amazfit X, so this isnât out of the realms of possibility.
Again, weâve seen this introduced on the Fitbit Versa 2 and the Wyze Band budget fitness tracker, so itâs not hugely surprising to see Xiaomi follow suit. This could mean control of smart home devices from the wrist â although like those rival devices â we think itâs unlikely a speaker would be integrated.
That means feedback would need to be visual â which could mean a big jump in screen size is on the way. Watch this space.
The final new feature is female cycle and fertility logging â though thereâs no details on whether this will be via the device itself or logged in the app, and it could embrace the PAI score used by Amazfit trackers, which rates your fitness and workout efforts over the last month.
Tizenhelp believes we’ll see the Mi Band 5 in late June or early July, slightly delayed from its original planned release date thanks to the pandemic. That tallies with our estimates â so watch this space.
Xiaomi Mi Band 5: How do we know it’s coming?
Confirmation of the Mi Band 5’s existence was revealed during a Q&A session after Huami’s Q2 2019 earnings call.
In a response to a question about whether the company would continue to co-operate with Xiaomi in the future, and whether it would still produce the Mi Band 5, Wang Huang, founder, chairman of the board and chief executive officer at Huami: “We are actually developing Mi-Band 5 with Xiaomi.”
In a further question about Huami’s future product lineup, Wang confirmed that the work on the next-generation Mi Band is already underway and talked about a possible Mi Band 5 launch window.
Rumors have been circulating that subsidiary Xiaomi could split from Huami, which would jeopardise the release of the Mi Band 5. But the company took to Weibo in April 2020 to deny any rumors of a split, and confirm that the Xiaomi Mi Band 5 was still on the way.
Xiaomi Mi Band 5: Leaked pictures
In May 2020 the first possible leaked pictures emerged, but we decided not to run them here because trusted Xiaomi tipster Xiaomishka has quashed speculation by saying that the images are fake. You can head over to his Twitter feed if you want to take a look anyway. Hey, it’s fun to imagine right?
Xiaomi Mi Band 5: Possible June 2020 release date
So, when will the Mi Band 5 launch? Huami has stated that it will arrive in 2020, with some rumors pointing to that being around June 2020.
Back in August 2019 Wang Huang said: “We do not have a fixed time when we’re going to launch Mi Band 5”, said Wang Huang. “But I would say that we have already started working on Mi Band 5 with Xiaomi and it’s not going to take that long. We just launched Mi Band 4, but potentially toward the [indecipherable] of next year , we may launch Mi Band 5.”
And in April 2020 the company wrote on Weibo: “We will launch Mi Band 5 this year as planned and expect it to be another blockbuster following the record-breaking performance of Mi Band 4.”
Multiple sources, including key retailer Gearbest, are reporting a June 2020 release date. And there is some credence to that theory.
The Mi Band 4 was announced and launched in June 2019 while the Mi Band 3 rolled out in May 2018.
It’s only fair, then, to assume that the new Band could launch around a similar time in 2020.
Xiaomi Mi Band 5: What will it look like?
The unveiling of Xiaomi’s Hey+ 1S fitness tracker – shown above – may well have given us a glimpse at what the Mi Band 5 will look like when it is officially unveiled.
If we look back at Xiaomi’s previous Hey tracker launches, many of its design cues have found their way into upcoming Mi Bands.
That design was then closely echoed by the Mi Band 4 upon its release this year. That’s leading to strong rumors that the Hey+ 1S is playing a similar role.
That new Hey+ 1S tracker doesn’t appear to have made drastic changes, when compared to the Mi Band 4’s design or feature set. It has, however, tweaked the display to offer a more rectangular shape with rounded corners.
It’s entirely possible we’ll see the Mi Band 5 follow suit with a blockier look.
Xiaomi Mi Band 5: What features will it offer?
Huang has stated that Huami will “continue to work closely with Xiaomi on new product releases” and said that its long-term plans with the popular Mi Band product line remain unchanged.
He added that it was looking forward to “developing and producing future generations of the Mi-Band, including variants targeting different global market segments and customer profiles.”
Unsurprisingly, there wasn’t any talk in terms of what features we could see in the Mi Band 5.
Essential reading: Xiaomi Mi Band 4 tips and tricks
However, perhaps features that were speculated to arrive for the Band 4 may be reserved for the next one. ECG support, for instance, was something heavily rumored to land.
Fitbit has really pushed the fitness tracker forward with its line-up of sensors on the Charge 4. With things like SpO2 for blood oxygen monitoring and GPS, it’s now way more advanced that the Mi Band 4. Xiaomi has found success in bringing headline features to its line-up at super low prices, so we’d be expecting blood oxygen detection â which has already graced devices such as the Huawei Watch GT2e.
Sleep tracking has been an industry wide focus, so we’d expect to see progress here.
NFC support outside of China?
A notable new feature on Xiaomi’s Hey+ 1S tracker that could make the cut is the improved NFC chip, used for contactless payments. In China, as well as being used at payment terminals, it is also used to replace work passes and bus cards.
The Xiaomi Mi Band 5 could be the first fitness tracker from the company to offer contactless payment support outside of China, according to a new leak from TizenHelp.
In the last two iterations of the Mi Band, Xiaomi has only supported contactless payments in its home territory. Could this be about to change for good?
Keep this page on lock as we’ll be updating with developments as they happen.