The Amazfit X fitness tracker from Huami is now available to order, but unlike the company's other products, this one is being crowd-funded on IndieGoGo (opens in new tab) and isn't due to ship until August.
The Amazfit X features a long, curved color screen with a 92-degree arc, which Huami says is designed to show as much information as possible at a glance, without the need to scroll. The display provides just over two inches of real estate to display your heart rate (measured 24 hours a day), calorie burn, pace and distance.
There are five sport modes to choose from (including running, open water swimming and indoor fitness), plus GPS and GLONASS tracking for outdoor activities. The device also offers sleep tracking that records changes in SPO2 levels, which might indicate problems like sleep apnea.
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The Amazfit X also has what Huami calls "near medical ECG tracking" like that found in the Apple Watch. This is intended to detect an irregular heart rhythm that might be a sign of an undetected cardiac condition.
Wisdom of crowds
After teasing a concept design in September 2019, Huami listed the device on IndieGoGo in January 2020. However, it wasn't clear at the time whether this was simply a way of advertising the tracker, or a sign that it was close to production. Now, it's clear that it was latter.
Crowd funding is an unusual approach for a company with a long history of launching devices through more traditional channels.
"The reason why we want to launch our product through crowdfunding is to firstly establish a tight connection with tech-seekers and then set up a worldwide community with first-hand feedback before officially stepping out into the market," Huami explained.
"We are ready for production, as verified by IndieGoGo. With over 100 million units shipped to its [sic] happy owners globally, we stand behind our products and supply chain with confidence and ensure 100% guaranteed delivery."
Priced to move
The Amazfit X will eventually retail at $329 (about £265, AU$500), which is about the same as the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2, but various pre-order discounts are available, with up to 54% off.
Unfortunately, it's missing a few features you might expect to find in a fitness tracker or smartwatch at this price point. Specifically, there's no NFC for contactless payment, no support for third-party apps and no LTE.
That long, curved screen (made by heating the glass to over 700C before bending it) is the key differentiator here, but if you're in the market for an attractive fitness tracker then that early bird discount might look rather appealing.