A Xiaomi MiBand 6 on a user's wrist displays the time.
Fitness Trackers

Xiaomi Mi Band 8 vs Mi Band 6: is it time for an update?

Jimmy Westenberg/Android Authority

The latest Xiaomi Mi Band is officially on shelves regionally, with a global rollout coming soon. Based on the specs and design of the latest model, there’s a lot to look forward to. But what about that trusty older brother on your wrist? To find out if it’s high time for an upgrade, we compare the Xiaomi Mi Band 8 to the Mi Band 6 and take a look at the value of each device.

Mi Band 8 vs. Mi Band 6


An affordable fitness tracker will never go out of fashion, but that hasn’t stopped Xiaomi from adding some massive styling upgrades to its latest model. While some design features are carried over from the Mi Band 7, others are completely new.

For starters, the Mi Band 8 is longer and wider than the Mi Band 6. It’s also slightly thinner at 10.9 versus 12.7mm. The 8 brings back the same 1.62-inch, 192 x 490-pixel AMOLED display as its predecessor with always-on mode capabilities, and can now hit 600 nits at peak brightness. It’s a lot bigger, brighter and more usable than two generations ago, especially since the new model also boasts a 60Hz refresh rate.

The Mi Band 6 only packs a 1.56-inch display with no always-on mode and a peak brightness of just 450 nits. The added real estate is an obvious improvement, but so is the always-on mode that keeps stats and data accessible at a glance. The Mi Band 8 even offers watch faces that double as entertainment with playable games on the screen.

A user wears the most recent model as a pendant.

Attached to its sleek display, the Mi Band 8 also features a split band rather than the unibody design of the Mi Band 6. This isn’t a completely new change, as observant buyers will recognize a similar look on the Mi Band 7 Pro. However, it’s the biggest change Xiaomi has made to the strap for its base line, and it brings the device in line with other popular wearable brands like Fitbit and Apple. More importantly, the device can now be worn around the neck as a pendant or clipped to a sports shoe. It will track key fitness metrics from these alternate positions, making it a much more versatile device.

The Mi Band 8 introduces a new strap design as well as the ability to wear the tracking pill as a necklace or on your shoe.

The pill and strap design changes also mean that the Mi Band 8 has a new proprietary charger, which powers its 190mAh battery. The Mi Band 8 will last up to 16 days in normal mode and up to six days with always-on mode. The Mi Band 6 has a 125 mAh battery and a 14-day battery life. During our review, however, we found that the advanced features drain the device much faster, resulting in a battery life of around a week.


A Xiaomi Mi Band 6 on a user's wrist displays available GPS.

Jimmy Westenberg/Android Authority

Beyond what they look like, bigger differences appear in what each device can do. For the basics, the Mi Band 6 and Mi Band 8 share many basic features, including heart rate monitoring, sleep and stress tracking, female health monitoring, and activity metrics. personal (PAI). They also both feature an SpO2 sensor, although the newer model offers 24/7 continuous monitoring (rather than just overnight), as well as SpO2 low level alerts. Neither model offers on-board GPS or, to our knowledge, many smart features. In China, a standard model and an NFC model have both been launched, but it is not yet clear whether the same will be available globally.

Compared to newer models, the health and fitness features of the Mi Band 6 are limited.

Like the Mi Band 7, the 8 leads the 6 with maximum VO2 monitoring and advanced training analysis such as training load, training effect and recovery statistics. The Mi Band 8 also offers 150 sports modes, which is five times that of the Mi Band 6 (and more than you can make good use of). In addition to the updated 8s 6-axis accelerometer, Xiaomi has also added motion-based fitness classes to the Mi Fitness app, which users can track and follow for further training.

Prices and colors

A set of the latest models display new watch faces with playable games.
  • Xiaomi Mi Band 6 (global, no NFC): $45.99 on Amazon
  • Xiaomi Mi Band 6 (China, no NFC): 229 yuan (~$35)
  • Xiaomi Mi Band 6 (China, NFC): 279 yuan (~$42)
  • Xiaomi Mi Band 8 (China, no NFC): 239 yuan (~$34)
  • Xiaomi Mi Band 8 (China, NFC): 279 yuan (~$40)

The Xiaomi Mi Band 6 originally launched at $49.99, but can now be found for upwards of $35 from third-party retailers. It is available in six colors: black, orange, yellow, olive, ivory and blue.

A global model of the Xiaomi Mi Band 8 is not yet available. It is also uncertain whether there will be an NFC version of the global Mi Band 8. For now, the existing models are available in two colors: Light Gold and Bright Black.

Xiaomi Mi Band 6Xiaomi Mi Band 6
AA Editors' Choice

Xiaomi Mi Band 6

Affordable Extended Health Monitors Bright Display

An additional SpO2 tracker and more features than its predecessors.

The Xiaomi Mi Band 6 is a solid fitness tracker with an AMOLED display and blood oxygen monitoring.

Xiaomi Mi Band 8Xiaomi Mi Band 8

Xiaomi Mi Band 8

Accurate health and fitness tracking Affordable price Unique form factor

Again, Xiaomi offers a complete fitness tracker at an affordable price.

The Xiaomi Mi Band 8 features an all-new strap design and the same vibrant touchscreen as the previous generation. Whether worn on the wrist, as a necklace or even attached to a running shoe, the device tracks key fitness stats and offers helpful health monitoring tools for users who want to keep an eye on their well-being. It’s a powerful entry-level tracker at a great price.


Xiaomi Mi Band 8 Xiaomi Mi Band 6


Xiaomi Mi Band 8

1.62-inch AMOLED
Always-on display mode
192×490 resolution
Up to 600nits

Xiaomi Mi Band 6

1.56 inch AMOLED
152×486 resolution
Up to 450nits


Xiaomi Mi Band 8

PPG heart rate sensor
6-axis motion sensor
SpO2 sensor
Connected GPS

Xiaomi Mi Band 6

PPG heart rate sensor
3 axis accelerometer
SpO2 sensor
Connected GPS


Xiaomi Mi Band 8

Standard battery life of 16 days
6 days with DOA

Xiaomi Mi Band 6

14 day battery life


Xiaomi Mi Band 8

Bluetooth 5.1

Xiaomi Mi Band 6

Bluetooth 5.0

Water resistance

Xiaomi Mi Band 8


Xiaomi Mi Band 6


Charging method

Xiaomi Mi Band 8

Magnetic charging

Xiaomi Mi Band 6

Magnetic charging

Compatible Devices

Xiaomi Mi Band 8

Android 6.0 or later
iOS 12.0 or later

Xiaomi Mi Band 6

Android 5.0 or later
iOS 10.0 or later


Xiaomi Mi Band 8

48 x 22.5 x 10.99mm

Xiaomi Mi Band 6

47.4 x 18.6 x 12.7mm


Xiaomi Mi Band 8

Shiny black, light gold

Xiaomi Mi Band 6

Black, Orange, Yellow, Olive, Ivory, Blue

Xiaomi Mi Band 8 vs Mi Band 6: which one to buy?

The Band 8 is probably the best buy for most buyers and deserves an upgrade.

If you want to wear your bracelet beyond your wrist, the Xiaomi Mi Band 8 is the best choice. It’s a more versatile device with a more comprehensive feature set in terms of health and fitness tracking. Likewise, when it comes to powerful workout tools, battery size, and best display, the Mi Band 8 is three for three. It’s a major improvement over the Mi Band 6, which makes sense because both of its generations are newer.

That said, it’s also brand new and priced as such. Now two generations behind, the Mi Band 6 can be found heavily discounted. Even the Mi Band 7 will likely be available at discounted prices once the Mi Band 8 hits shelves globally. Meanwhile, if you already have an older model, upgrading is a tougher decision. The Mi Band 8 brings enough to the table to be worth trading in, but only if its headlining features are the ones you want to use. We recommend switching to 8 if you want more dedicated training analysis and a more user-friendly display.

If you want an even better workout buddy, we recommend the Mi Band 7 Pro ($109.99 at Amazon). It is expensive compared to other bands. However, it’s also the only model to offer built-in GPS for running and cycling without a phone in your pocket.


Both generations offer connected GPS but no integrated GPS. You will need to carry your phone to log data from outdoor workouts.

The Mi band 6 does not have NFC. In China, there is an NFC and a non-NFC model of the Mi Band 8, however, it is unclear if both options will be available globally.

You cannot use Alexa with the Mi Band 6. There is a model of the Xiaomi Mi Band 8 with a voice assistant available in China, but it is not yet clear if the global models will support Alexa.

No. You will only receive alerts when there is an incoming call.

The Xiaomi Mi Band 7 Pro is the most powerful Mi Band with the biggest screen and built-in GPS. The Xiaomi Mi Band 8 is the best non-Pro option.

Mi Band 8 introduces a new versatile strap design and display enhancements. It also adds additional workout features, a bigger battery, and an improved motion sensor.

The Xiaomi Mi Band 6 is still a budget-friendly and commendable fitness tracker. However, it is only worth buying at a significant discount considering the existing alternative in the range.

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