The Amazfit Band7 costs $50
My review could be ended there, with my six-word take on Ernest Hemingway’s story ” Baby Shoes.” But is not Hemingway. Everything that I have to say about the Band 7 is related to its ridiculously low price.
Usually, when buying something so cheap, I expect a lot more tradeoffs. It’s something that makes me say, “Aha!” This is why it’s 50. (Technically it’s $49.99, but we won’t argue over a penny. Yes, there were moments like that while wearing the Amazfit 7 these past few weeks. The $99.95 Fitbit Ispire 3 made it feel like I was stepping back in time.
It’s logical. It makes sense. The line between smartwatches and fitness bands is becoming ever more blurred. I often wondered, during testing, if anyone would miss the fitness bands if they disappeared completely. Although the jury is still out, it led me to another question. Is that where all the budget-friendly fitness trackers went?
Amazfit Band 7
- Super affordable
- Excellent features for the price
- OLED display looks nice
- Lightweight and comfortable
- Battery life is long
- It is difficult to do everything one-handed
- Some app quirks
- GPS can go haywire
Although it isn’t a great looking tool, it will do the job.
The Amazfit 7 is not going to be complimented by anyone. It’s unlikely that anyone will even take it in their stride unless they ask, “Oh, it’s a Fitbit?”
Look at that thing. While black is the most common color for gadgets, it is also one of the most distinctive and stylish. You have other options like beige and pink, but they aren’t as interesting because they’re not all black. This tracker is for utilitarians who sigh at the design excellence and wonder, “Why would anyone need it?”
Although the default strap feels stiff, it doesn’t feel like it’s going to give way. It does collect dust and dead skin, though. It feels plasticky but that’s because you signed up for it with a $50 tracker. The Band 7 weighs in at just 28g and can be worn to bed. Although it is heavier than the Inspire 3, at 17.7g, I doubt many people will be able to tell the differences.This colorful watchface gives life and style to the otherwise boring Amazfit Band 7.
However, it is almost impossible to do this one-handed. To stop the strap from sliding around my wrist, I had to hold it against a table. This is probably a Tiny Wrist Club problem. However, even after I got it on, it was still too loose. It was too tight on my arm, so I had to wear it higher up.
It’s simple to swap out the straps. There are no pins on the Garmin Vivosmart 5. The tracker can be removed by simply popping it out. You will need a specific strap for the Band 7. This limits your choices to other colors. However, I was able to find this stylish third-party strap for $13.
The Band7’s 1.47-inch OLED screen is the best thing about it. It has smaller bezels than its predecessor and the display is brighter and more colorful. The notifications are easy to read and it was easy to navigate the menus. Surprisingly the new watchfaces look cute too. The one in these photos was my favorite. The addition of the color added an extra dimension and fun to the overall design. There are many watchfaces available that will display stats for data geeks. They are also not too ugly.This enclosure is not for me. It is difficult to hold the enclosure one-handed, especially for those with smaller wrists.
OLED does not completely drain battery life. The Band 7 lasted just over two weeks on one charge. With the always-on display enabled, about a third of that time was spent charging. The charger is proprietary so be careful. You don’t want to be like me and forget where it is because you haven’t used it in so many years. Although I swear it was in my bag at work, I believe it fell through an interdimensional portal into the great e-waste cemetery in the sky. It’s not as expensive as replacing other chargers. Amazfit sells an extra charger for $9.99, but there are better deals if you shop with third-party accessory sellers on Amazon.
You get $50 in 2023 for the same amount
Amazfit is a brand you should know if you haven’t heard of it. These wearables offer a huge range of features for a price that will leave Fitbit executives grumbling.
Here’s an example:
- Amazon Alexa
- Continuous heart rate, blood oxygen and stress monitoring
- Sleep tracking: sleep stages, sleep scores and breathing quality
- Training metrics such as VO2 Max and recovery time, training load, or training effect include VO2 Max and training effect.
- Virtual Pacing for Runs
- Alerts for abnormal heart rate, SpO2 and stress
- PAI, which is similar to Fitbit’s Active zone minutes or Garmin’s intensity minutes
- 120 sport profiles that somehow include folk dancing, parkour, and chess. Yes, chess.
- Tracking menstrual cycles
- Push notifications, quick responses (Android), find me phone, camera remotes alarms, timers and even a Pomodoro clock
- Media controls
I am still new to stress tracking and it is not something that I expected to find on a tracker as cheap.
If it’s not on sale, I don’t expect to see these kinds of training metrics for anything less than $180. I honestly don’t expect to see abnormal heart rates notifications for less than $100. You also get good accuracy for basic health metrics. (I cannot speak to the SpO2 and abnormal heart rates, other than to say that they were never activated. These features are combined with the OLED screen and longer battery life? Pfft. This feature set costs $50, which feels like you are getting away with something.
There are some things that will remind users that this device is budget-friendly. The Zepp app — Amazfit is a companion app and parent company for Zepp — isn’t as well-designed as the apps you’ll find at larger brands. have quirks. For instance, it would be great if Zepp could figure out how to make switching from Imperial units sticks 100 percent of the times. As claims, it’s too generous to call Zepp’s 10 apps an ecosystem. Sometimes, your data may not be working properly if you need to connect with GPS satellites. You will be notified prior to starting. The app is simple to use, uncluttered and easy to navigate.
features that are lacking feel more like sensible compromises rather than obvious omissions. It does not accept NFC payments and instead uses your phone’s GPS rather than its own sensors. Although you can speak to Alexa, there is a slight lag and no speaker so you must read its responses. This is not a huge loss, but it’s a good thing if Alexa is annoying. Navigation through menus is simple and easy.
The Band 7 performed well in my daily life. It did what I asked it to. It told me when I should stop sitting down, alerted me when text messages came in, and sometimes urged me to relax. It is so lightweight that I sometimes forget I am even wearing it. The GTR4 was my favorite device. I used it most while doing chores and puttingtering about. Although it isn’t a very glamorous device, it isn’t meant to be. Sometimes it can be a relief to have a device that isn’t trying to be anything more than it already is.
Casual activity, not training
People who are looking to move more will love the Band7. It was great for exercises like yoga, walking, and weight training. These are the types of exercises that I orglance at it to see my heart rate and duration. This is perfect, since the smartwatch’s display won’t show you as much information as a larger one. In terms of accuracy, metrics such as step count and heart beat were on par with other devices that I tested over the same period, including the Apple Watch U and Garmin forerunner 265S.
Amazfit’s PAI program is also something I love. This system gives you an indication of how much activity you are getting by counting the number of PAI points that you earn over the course of a week. PAI is earned by increasing your heart rate. You can earn PAI by increasing your heart rate. I have more to say about this in my Amazfit GTR4 review. But the general idea is that it’s a holistic and beginner-friendly way to get 150 minutes of moderate exercise each week. While you won’t be able to see much data on one screen, it’s fine for casual activities. Amazfit’s PAI system for evaluating your weekly activities is something I love. It is great for busy people or beginners.
Despite this, I wouldn’t use it to prepare for my next race. I need more accurate GPS data than a tethered phone, especially if I am going to train for 12-16 weeks. My iPhone only ran 2.45 miles on a 3.03-mile run, while my Apple Watch Ultra ran 3.01 miles. This led to metrics for pace, VO2 Max, and other parameters. This was partly due to Band 7 not receiving a GPS signal in time. It’s fine for casual runs of 1-4 miles, but not what I needed during my home stretch of half-marathon training. You can guess which one I forgot on race day, between the Forerunner 265S or the Band 7.
Where are all the fitness bands?
Smartwatches are now more popular than fitness bands. This wasn’t always true. It used to be I could name several fitness bands below $200 off the top of mine. The Misfit Ray, Shine, Fitbit Alta HR (and all Fitbits prior to the Blaze), Jawbone UP and Samsung Gear Fit 2 were just a few of the many fitness bands I could name. Amazfit Band 7 aside, I cannot name any other fitness bands released in the past year. The nearly identical $49.99 Xiaomi Mi Band 7 and the $99.95 Fitbit Include 3 are the closest matches. And the $149.99 Garmin vivosmart 5 is the most expensive.
It’s strange, I realize now.
There are budget phones, laptops and speakers as well as TVs and headphones. I’m sure my peers could name many more from the reputable brands that have come out in the past year. There are many reasons why this is so, but I think the main reason is that companies prioritize premium smartwatches over simple, affordable fitness trackers. Profit margins are a factor, but it’s a shame. These affordable fitness bands aren’t nearly as common anymore.
But perhaps I’m wrong. This could be people voting using their wallets. Perhaps fitness bands are overpriced and people don’t value the extra battery life or savings. That I doubt. Even if that were true, it doesn’t mean you don’t need to look at budget options. No matter how you view wearable tech, fitness trackers are a motivating tool that can help you improve your health and stay connected. If you only need the basics, it doesn’t make sense to spend $200 on this.
This is a $50 fitness band. It’s a great one. It’s a great idea.