Mi Watch Lite(Redmi GPS Watch) review: Budget smartwatch with built-in GPS

The Xiaomi Mi Watch Lite was launched at the end of 2020 just after its pro version the Mi Watch. The Mi Watch series is Xiaomi’s first attempt at the smart watch product category for the global market. Xiaomi is riding on the spectacular success of the Mi band fitness trackers that are currently in their 6th iteration with the Mi band 6. This Mi Watch lite goes by brand name Redmi GPS Watch in India.

I have been using the Mi band fitness trackers since the Mi band 4 and so naturally I was looking forward to Xiaomi’s Smart watches. The Mi Watch Lite is a sub $50 smartwatch that follows a square form-factor you would expect from a smart watch. The watch measures 41 x 35 x 11.9 mm and weighs only 35g.

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It features a TFT 1.4″ touch screen with resolution of 320×320 pixels(323 ppi). The Mi watch lite comes in 5 colors; pink, ivory, black, navy blue and Olive. The straps can also be swapped with various colors that suit your taste.

What we liked;
– Built-in GPS
– Big 1.4″ TFT touch screen
– Good built quality
– Affordable price point
What we didn’t like;
– No always-on display
– Clumsy software interface
– No third party integration such as Google Fit or Strava
– No SpO2 blood oxygen monitor

The Xiaomi Mi Watch Lite has recently been my daily driver replacing the Mi band 6 fitness and Amazfit GTS smartwatch. Out of the box, pairing and setting up the Mi Watch Lite didn’t go as smoothly as the Mi band or Amazfit products and you can read more on the setup process here. First the Mi Watch Lite comes with a physical button on the side and is powered by the Xiaomi wear app which is different from the Mi Fit app used to set up the band series. Coming from the Mi band and Amazfit products, the physical button takes a little getting used to for me.

Read more: How to Set up the Mi Watch Lite(Redmi Watch)

Mi Watch Lite full specifications

Mi Watch Lite specifications
Product nameMi Watch lite
Display Screen size1.4"
Display TechTFT(Thin-Film Transistor)
Screen resolution320x320 resolution, 323 PPI
Net weight35g (Incl. watch & strap)
Strap materialTPU
Adjustable Length140-210 mm
Bluetooth5.1 BLE
SensorsHeart rate, Accelerator, Gyroscope, Compass, Barometric Pressure sensor, Ambient light
Built-in GPSYes (GLONASS)
Water resistance5 ATM
Battery capacity230 mAh
Compatible withAndroid 5.0 & iOS 10 and above

It appears the physical button akin to the one on Apple watch (digital crown) takes center stage for the user experience of the Mi watch lite. Press the button once to wake the watch, then press it again to launch the tile menu. You can also raise your wrist to wake the watch, but this didn’t work as efficiently as the Mi bands/Amazfit smart watches. With the menu items loaded, you then use the watch’s touch screen to navigate around the user interface and input values. The menu items are squashed closely together, so you’re out of luck if you have big fingers.

Related post: Mi Band 6 review: A bigger screen and SpO2 monitor makes this Xiaomi’s best fitness band yet

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The watch has some on-screen touch navigation controls such as, swiping down from the top of the watch on the home screen reveals notifications. Swiping up from the bottom on the home screen shows the control panel. Swiping left or right from the home screen shows widgets for music control, weather, heart rate, sleep data.

The Mi Watch Lite has all the standard features you would get from the Mi band 5 with an added built-in GPS, Compass, Air pressure monitor and a few more fitness modes. The built-in GPS is actually fast and accurate and it helps you accurately track your trajectory, speed, distance and calories burnt. The watch also supports A-GPS or Assisted GPS. This A-GPS enables the watch to pick GPS satellite data from your watch via Bluetooth. Data is automatically synchronized from the Xiaomi Wear companion app.

If you take it walking or running, you will get an added mapped route of your workout along with more accurate stats such as distance, pace, calories burnt, cadence, heart rate and so forth. A built-in GPS and a physical navigation button in the Mi Watch product line is what separates them from the Mi band series and Amazfit smart watches.

The Mi Watch lite supports up to 11 fitness modes including Outdoor running, Treadmill, Outdoor cycling, Open water, swimming, Freestyle, Pool swimming, Cricket, Trekking, Trail run, Walking, Indoor cycling. It’s 5 ATM water resistant upto 50m, so you can take it swimming, the gym or in the shower. The watch supports over 120 themed watch faces you can download and customize to fit your taste. You also get continuous heart rate monitoring, sleep tracking, music control, idle alerts and more. This watch has no built-in music storage which is something I would have expected seeing as it’s lacking in the Mi band series. It also lacks an SpO2 blood oxygen monitor.

Update: We have made a video review of this watch you can watch below;

Mi Watch lite Feature list

  • 11 Workout modes
  • Workout history
  • Stats
  • Heart rate
  • Sleep monitoring
  • Breathing exercise
  • Compass
  • Air pressure
  • Music control
  • Alarm
  • Stop watch
  • Timer
  • Weather
  • Notifications
  • Find phone
  • Flash light
  • Idle alerts

The Mi Watch lite has a 230 mAh battery which can take you up to 9 days or 10 hours with continuous GPS use. Based on my experience, I think the Mi Watch Lite tries to live up to this promise. I was able to squeeze in at least 8 days of battery with 2-3 workout sessions requiring the GPS on, which is impressive. The watch is charged by a two pin charger that snaps to the back of the watch. You can get full charge in about 1 hour.

Price and availability

The Mi Watch Lite, like the Mi band series, is widely available online. You can get one at $47 from aliexpress.com, Amazon UK for £47.93, ₹3,999 on Flipkart (Redmi GPS Watch)

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