We needed by corporate Christmas presents and decided that it was enough of the chocolate and wine baskets.  It is time to encourage some healthly living.  Given the currently work-at-home requirements many of us have, our staff decided that a fitness bands / watches would be the best category.  After a thorough review of all fitness bands under $150, including the Samsung Galaxy Fit, Xiaomi Mi Band5 and various Fitbits and Honor Bands, we settled on the “AmazFit Band 5 with Alexa” (see our unboxing and setup video HERE). 

Naturally, we bought a few for ourselves as well and our staff have been using these for two weeks now.  So after some use we figured out the advanced settings like how to use the AmazFit Band 5 as a remote for your camera, increase the screen brightness and have the AmazFit turn on when we raise our arms and our staff have some interesting observations and explanations about how useful this fitness tracker really is.

Lets start off with the negatives to get them out of the way:

  1. Can not reply to texts or even mark them as read
  2. No flashlight app.  This is a simple addition that the developer Zepp could add at anytime – just turn the screen on to full brightness.
  3. It doesn’t multitask so you can’t ask Alexa a question when it is tracking your exercise, like a walk.  The notable exception to this is that the AmazFit Band 5 will display a new inbound text for a few seconds even when it is doing something else, like fitness tracking.
  4. Autodetection of activities does not always work.
  5. It is supposed to track elevation and keep a stair count but we can’t find any such tracking
  6. Weak vibration alert – but can change the vibration pattern to make it more noticable
  7. The cell phone app is a bit cumbersome to navigate because it is designed to be used with more than one Zepp device

Now for the good stuff.  Here is what is good about the Band 5:

  1. The device is certainly stylish and light weight
  2. Battery lasts a solid week with everything turned on.  “Everything” is constant heart and blood oxygen monitoring along with automatic activity tracking and text/call notifications.
  3. Night time use is great because LIFT WRIST TO VIEW has a time setting, so just set it to the times you are usually awake
  4. Using the Band 5 as a remote control for cell phone camera and musci is very handy
  5. Notices to get up “You’ve been sitting too long” are minor and quite helpful
  6. Piles of add-on apps, but most notably NOTIFY FOR AMAZFIT & ZEP: GET NEW FEATURES – we are going to provide a full review of this shortly but it can
    • add quick reply’s, build custom watch face with your photos and screen mirror
  7. The four big features we really like are:
    1. The heart rate monitor
    2. The blood oxygen monitor
    3. PAI – This heart health monitoring is really the most useful feature for me personally
    4. Alexa – although we use it less than we thought we would

Because the product performs well and it can be bought for as little as USD$30 (we originally paid USD$50 and would be very happy at that price), we can highly recommend the AmazFit Band 5.


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