Fitbit Charge 6 vs. Xiaomi Mi Band 8

Updated: We help you choose between these very different beasts
Wareable Fitbit Charge 6 vs. Xiaomi Mi Band 8 photo 1
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Fitbit and Xiaomi have been in the fitness tracker war for nearly a decade, so it's fitting that the new Xiaomi Mi Smart Band 8 Global Edition and Fitbit Charge 6 should launch in the same week.

These are two very different beasts, so if you're deciding which is the right fitness tracker for you then make sure to read our full guide.

We've fully reviewed both devices now, and you can check out our full testing with the links below, or read on for a quick guide.

Fitbit Charge 6 review | Xiaomi Smart Band 8 review


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Fitbit Charge 6:

With a retail price of $159/£139, the Charge 6 is certainly on the higher end of the fitness tracker market. The price includes six months of Fitbit Premium and one month of YouTube Music.

Xiaomi Mi Band 8:

Priced at £39.99/€49.99, the Mi Band 8 is considerably more affordable than the Charge 6. While there's no official US price yet, it's expected to be around $50.

Winner: Xiaomi Mi Band 8


WareableFitbit Charge 6  step data

Fitbit Charge 6:

On the surface, the Charge 6 is unchanged from the Charge 5, but there are a couple of key differences. The Charge 6 is made from 100% recycled aluminum.

The screen is a 1.08-inch AMOLED display, so it's nowhere near as big as the Mi Band 8. That's not too much of a problem, but notifications are quickly cut off, so you can't read too much of your messages.

The most significant physical change is the reintroduction of the physical button, addressing complaints about the Charge 5's touchscreen-only interface.

WareableFitbit Charge 6  step data

Xiaomi Mi Band 8:

The Mi Band 8 offers a sleek design with a 1.62-inch AMOLED always-on display. The display is bright and features a 60Hz refresh rate. The straps have been redesigned, offering a modern and attractive look.

The Mi Band 8 can also be clipped to clothing if you want more versatility in placement, or worn as a pendent. So it's much more versatile than the Charge 6.

Winner: Mi Band 8 shades it for the screen size.

Health features

WareableFitbit Charge 6  step data

Fitbit Charge 6:

The Charge 6 boasts a comprehensive array of health sensors, such as ECG, EDA stress sensor, SpO2, continuous Afib detection, and high/low heart rate monitoring.

It's more advanced than you'll find on any rival fitness band and offers Apple Watch levels of health insights.

The Fitbit platform is also really strong, and sleep tracking is some of the best in the business.

But to get the best health insights, long term trends, the new Daily Readiness feature, and advanced data on sleep, you'll need Fitbit Premium, which costs $9.99/£7.99 a month.

Xiaomi Mi Band 8:

The Xiaomi Smart Band 8 offers SpO2 and heart rate monitoring, blood pressure monitoring, and female menstrual cycle recording and prediction. It's a respectable suite but doesn't match the Charge 6's extensive offering.

We had a mixed bag in terms of accuracy in our review period. Step tracking had the potential to show wild swings. However, heart rate accuracy was mostly on point, as was sleep tracking, which was fairly solid.

Winner: Fitbit Charge 6, for its broader range of health sensors and capabilities. It also produces more accurate and reliable data.

Fitness features

WareableFitbit Charge 6  step data

Fitbit Charge 6:

The Charge 6 introduces modes like HIIT, CrossFit, and skiing, catering to a diverse range of activities. It also includes GPS tracking, however, we found the accuracy and reliability of getting a GPS lock hit and miss when using the built-in GPS. You can use 'connected GPS' which uses your smartphone, and this is far more reliable. But this isn't one for runners.

The Google-powered heart rate algorithms are claimed to enhance tracking accuracy during intense workouts – and on the whole, were accurate in our testing.

Fitbit has added 20 new workout modes, taking the total to around 40.

Xiaomi Mi Band 8:

The Mi Smart Band 8 offers over 100 sports modes, with a particular emphasis on running. It can track running workouts from the foot and features a "Pebble Mode" to track movements when attached to clothing or shoes.

It produced really good data from the shoe, with cadence and stride data lining up well with Garmin's Running Dynamics.

However, by attaching it to the shoe, you lose the heart rate data from your run, which feels like a tough compromise. What's more, there's no GPS here, so you have to take your smartphone along for the ride. It's a great feature for runners, but we wouldn't really class the Smart Band 8 as a suitable device for those focused on running form. A tough one.

Winner: Fitbit shades this for gym workouts and classes

Smart features

WareableFitbit Charge 6  step data

Fitbit Charge 6:

The integration with Google services adds a lot of value. Users can now get turn-by-turn directions via Google Maps, and even better, use Google Wallet and Google Pay to pay from the wrist.

In our review, we found that the Google features worked really well, and elevated the Charge 6 to feel more useful.

The Fitbit Charge 6 works with iOS and Android smartphones. You can control playback on YouTube Music (though not Spotify or other platforms).

Xiaomi Mi Band 8:

The Mi Band 8 is also compatible with iOS and Android – although its smart features are more limited. It will show notifications but doesn't have the same access to third-party services as the Charge 6.

Winner: Fitbit Charge 6, mainly due to its integration with Google services.

Battery life

WareableFitbit Charge 6  step data

Fitbit Charge 6:

The Fitbit Charge 6 offers 7 days of battery life as standard, but that doesn't include the use of the always-on display, which will deplete the battery further. We found around 3-4 days of battery life if you keep the screen on 24/7.

Xiaomi Mi Band 8:

The Mi Band 8 packs a 190 mAh battery, which will last 16 days standard or 6 days with the always-on display enabled.

Winner: Mi Smart Band 8.

Which is right for you?

These are two very different beasts, but it should be easy to choose.

If you want the health features of an Apple Watch in a fitness band form (ECG, high/low HR/ Afib detection) then choose the Charge 6. Its health and sleep features are top-notch, and you do get what you pay for, in terms of the platform and app.

But if you want simpler data and more general tracking of your activity, Xiaomi is the best option here.

Fitbit Charge 6 v Mi Band 8 specs compared

Fitbit Charge 6Xiaomi Mi Band 8
Screen size1.08-inch1.62-inch
Battery life7 days16 days
SensorsHeart rate
High precision 6-axis sensor
PPG heart rate sensor
Ambient light sensor
Water resistant5ATM/IP685ATM/IP68

How we test

James Stables


James is the co-founder of Wareable, and he has been a technology journalist for 15 years.

He started his career at Future Publishing, James became the features editor of T3 Magazine and and was a regular contributor to TechRadar – before leaving Future Publishing to found Wareable in 2014.

James has been at the helm of Wareable since 2014 and has become one of the leading experts in wearable technologies globally. He has reviewed, tested, and covered pretty much every wearable on the market, and is passionate about the evolving industry, and wearables helping people achieve healthier and happier lives.

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