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OnePlus Band vs Mi Band 5: Which one should you buy?

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  • 8 min read

With the increasing importance of overall fitness in today’s world, the wearable market is full of options for consumers to choose from — specifically, the price range of INR 2000 to 3000. To tackle this market segment OnePlus has unveiled their first fitness tracker, the OnePlus Band, but, have they done enough?

In this article, we compare the OnePlus Band against Xiaomi’s Mi Band 5; a device that has maintained a significant position amongst wearables — over the last few years — to see which one is worth the money.

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While the features these devices bring are akin to comparing apples to apples, their overall looks are significantly different. The Mi Band 5 brings a pill-shaped body that has remained consistent since the first variant, launched back in 2014.

The OnePlus Band, on the other hand, features a rectangular look — just like that of the Oppo Band — making this, technically a rebrand with software that is of OnePlus’ flavour.

OnePlus Band vs Mi Band 5: Which one should you buy?
OnePlus Band’s three colour options, Black, Tangerine and Navy | Image Modified |Source: OnePlus via Twitter

Both bands have a 1.1-inch AMOLED display surrounded by bezels. With OnePlus, the experience is a little less clean with their branding present along the bottom edge. While in Xiaomi’s case, there is a small circle, which is indicative of a capacitive button that controls some actions on the smart band.

Mi Band 5’s body weighs slightly heavier at 11.9 grams while the OnePlus is 10.3 grams but with how lightweight these devices are — even with straps attached — we believe neither should make for an unpleasant experience.

These devices come housed in a black coloured strap, but other colours are purchasable. Xiaomi offers five options — Teal, Yellow, Orange, Mint Green and Navy Blue — whereas OnePlus offers just two — Tangerine and Navy.

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Fitness Features

Fitness tracking is often one of the primary reasons behind a person buying these devices; to that end, both bands offer varieties of dedicated sports modes that users can apply to track their training.

OnePlus Band features 13 distinct modes while the Mi Band 5 has 11. Nine of these are common to the two devices. Focussing on the remaining ones, OnePlus has dedicated setups for a Fat Burn Run, Outdoor Walk, Cricket and Badminton whereas the Mi Band has them for a jump rope workout and power walking.

OnePlus Band vs Mi Band 5: Which one should you buy?
Mi Band 5 | Image Modified |Source: Xiaomi via Twitter

The remaining nine modes common to the devices are listed below.

  • Elliptical (Elliptical Trainer on OnePlus Band)
  • Freestyle (Free Training on OnePlus Band)
  • Indoor Cycling
  • Outdoor Cycling
  • Outdoor Run
  • Pool Swimming
  • Rowing Machine
  • Treadmill (Indoor Run on OnePlus Band)
  • Yoga

Both devices are also capable of 24×7 Sleep tracking and Heart Rate Monitoring. Coming to their differences, Mi Band 5 has an AI-assisted feature called PAI which gives users a score and information on how their performance was through a week. It then suggests activities and tips to help improve their score. Xiaomi’s device can also help women track their menstrual cycles.

The OnePlus Band currently does not feature any of these abilities but does package a SpO2 monitor — missing in the Mi Band 5 — which can track blood saturation levels during sleep.

While these devices can track metrics like a user’s heart rate and blood saturation levels, they are not of medical grade and as stated by the companies are only meant to be used to as measure for general wellness.

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Companion Application

With the limited screen space on these bands, users may not be unable to visualize and track the information collected. Here, companion applications play a substantial role.

Apart from the initial setup, these apps also allow the behaviour of the device to be modified. Applying custom watch faces and configuring how notifications arrive on your fitness tracker are some of the changes users can make.

OnePlus Band vs Mi Band 5: Which one should you buy?
Mi Fit on iOS

Mi Band’s companion application Mi Fit is available for Android and iOS platforms and needs a device running Android 5.0 and iOS 10.0 or later.

At the time of writing, OnePlus Health is only available on Android devices running 6.0 or later. The iOS version is said to be available post-launch with no confirmed date of availability.

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Xiaomi’s fitness tracker has a 125 mAh cell whereas the OnePlus has a 100 mAh unit. The former claims the Mi Band 5 will require less than two hours for a complete charge. Although there was no comparable metric for OnePlus Band with its smaller battery, we doubt it would take much longer to charge than the Mi Band 5.

Both devices come with charging equipment in the box. With the OnePlus, users will have to take out the tracker from the band and push it into the included charging cradle while the Mi Band 5 uses a magnetic connector which clips onto the back of the device while it is in the band.

OnePlus Band vs Mi Band 5: Which one should you buy?
OnePlus Band has to be removed from its strap for charging. | Image Modified | Source: OnePlus via Twitter

Both manufacturers claim that their devices can last up to 14 days on a single charge. In addition to this claim, Xiaomi’s Mi Band 5 has a power-saving mode which can extend its duration to a period of 20 days.

The battery life claims made by the companies are according to the testing conditions listed below.

Mi Band 5

  • The device was fully charged.
  • Heart rate monitoring is activated and set to record data at intervals of 30 minutes.
  • Lift-wrist-to-wake function activated with 100 activations a day.
  • Receiving and displaying 100 notifications per day.
  • 2 alarms per day with vibrations lasting for 5 seconds.
  • Syncing data with Mi Fit once per day.

OnePlus Band

  • The device was fully charged.
  • Heart rate monitoring is activated and set to record data at intervals of 6 minutes.
  • Performs continuous sleep monitoring of blood oxygen saturation levels with test interval set for once every 6 minutes
  • Lift-wrist-to-wake function activated.
  • Receiving 100 notifications and displaying 50 per day.
  • 2 alarms per day with vibrations lasting for 5 seconds.
  • Call notification 10 times per day – 5 seconds vibration per call.
  • Syncing data with OnePlus Health once per day.

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Mi Band 5 or OnePlus band: Which one should you buy?

We believe the decision of which fitness tracker you should pick must depend upon the accuracy of the information they provide since they are both priced the same at INR 2499.

With the Mi Band 5 being Xiaomi’s fifth wearable since 2014, their tracking algorithms we believe have a level of polish that OnePlus still lacks. Reviews from other media outlets have also cited the first generation band being not as accurate as Xiaomi’s.

Not only that but with additional features like the ability to track women’s menstrual cycles and REM Sleep, the Mi Band does seem to be the better overall option, especially from a fitness-based standpoint.

CategoriesOnePlus BandMi Band 5
Display1.1-inch AMOLED colour touchscreen
126 x 294 resolution
1.1-inch AMOLED colour touchscreen
126 x 294 resolution
Dimensions and Weight40.4 x 17.6 x 11.95mm
10.3g (body)
22.6g (with strap)
46.95 x 18.15 x 12.45 mm
11.9 g (body)
ColoursBlack, Tangerine, NavyBlack, Orange, Navy Blue, Mint Green, Teal, Yellow
Water Resistance Rating5 ATM, IP685 ATM
Sensors3-axis accelerometer and gyroscope
Optical heart rate sensor
Blood Oxygen Sensor
6-axis sensor: Low power-consumption 3-axis accelerometer and 3-axis gyroscope
PPG heart rate sensor
Digital MEMS microphone
14-day battery life (claimed)
14-day battery life (claimed)
20-day with battery saver mode (claimed)
ConnectivityBluetooth 5.0Bluetooth 5.0
CompatibilityAndroid 6.0 and above
iOS 10.0 and later (not supported at time of writing)
Android 5.0 and above
iOS 10.0 and later

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Aryan Surendranath

Aryan Surendranath

Has an interest in technology and video games. When not doing anything related to either of these you will find him with his books, educational or not.