Amazfit has revamped its budget smartwatch range with the launch of the Amazfit Bip 5.
The follow-up to the Bip 3 (you didn’t miss one) brings a bigger, curved display, and moves away from the somewhat boxy old Bip look.
The screen is a whopping 1.91-inch square display, but it still uses a TFT panel, rather than a full AMOLED.
An AMOLED display is the brighter and better-quality screen tech used on the Apple Watch, Galaxy Watch, and other premium smartwatches. An LCD TFT panel is noticeably paler and lower quality, but crucially, cheaper.
The resolution is a fairly unspectacular 320x380, which could be better given the size of the display, so it’s clear that visual quality is the payoff for choosing Amazfit’s entry-level watch.
But it does offer excellent value for money.
There’s GPS built-in with four satellite systems, so it's good for runners. This year Amazfit has dropped the Bip 5 Pro version that added GPS, so everyone gets the feature.
Amazfit promises 10 days battery life too, which should translate to around a week of normal to heavy use.
It’s pretty much the same proposition as the Bip 3 but in a refined case. However, the price has slightly risen this time out. It’s set at $89.99/£89.99, which is much closer to the $100/£100 Amazfit GTS 4 Mini, with its full AMOLED display.
The Bip range has always been our go-to budget smartwatch recommendation, thank in part to Amazfit’s platform. But a bump in price brings it closer to the rest of the Amazfit range, and now it’s not such an easy pick.
The spec sheet looks good, but we’d always opt for an AMOLED display, and the Amazfit GTS 4 Mini is just $100.
That comes against a backdrop of Xiaomi launching low-price smartwatches under its Redmi brand. The Redmi Watch 3 Active, packs a 1.83-inch TFT screen and sells for just €49.99 in Europe.
So it feels like this is Amazfit drawing back from a race to the bottom in terms of smartwatch pricing and asserting its position as a more premium offering.
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