Now that I’m focused on losing weight, I’ll step on a scale pretty much any chance I get. Obviously it is ridiculous. It might not even be healthy. But… I just want to see how that big lunch moved the needle or maybe whether I’m near a new low today. Stupid, I get it. But I’ve got this new excellence from Xiaomi  and suddenly it isn’t so stupid. The Mi Scale carries on their growing tradition of taking a cool idea done elsewhere and offering a well designed  version for substantially cheaper. In this case, the product is a bluetooth scale that integrates seamlessly with your phone. tl;dr The Mi scale is a little slab of delight that costs under $60, is more accurate than the competition, and gives you very cool bluetooth syncing to your sexy iPhone or your socially awkward Android statement of independence. Healthkit integration? Obviously.
I only talk about what I love on this site, so you may think I would toss around a title like “little slab of delight” for any old piece of crap. If only you knew me and appreciated the bottomless well of hate and dissatisfaction that I have to offer at every minor detail of everything in life you could appreciate that the Mi Scale is another diamond in the rough . If you don’t, life must be good, no one likes a negative Nancy anyway. I’m just going to have to take you through the delight point by point.
From the moment you see it, touch it, or I guess set foot on it  the Mi scale feels premium. The tempered glass surface gives it a solid density, so it doesn’t feel like a value priced item. For the 99.9% of your day that you aren’t stepping on this scale, its only job is to make you look rich and intelligent and, my, aren’t you suddenly looking wealthy and wise. Well done Mi Scale.
When you are actually using a scale it should be fast, effortless, and accurate. Check, check, and check. The Mi Scale gives you a weight reading within about 3 seconds of stepping on it. It also doesn’t require you to do anything to turn it on or get it ready. You just step on, the scale automatically recognizes you, and spits out a weight. Even the first time setup is simple. Just download the Mi Fit app (same app as used for the Mi Band) and it walks you through a quick sync process that had me up and running on the first try. The full first time setup took about 2 minutes with the majority of the time going to my phone updating the scale to a new version. That’s right, software updates, because that is a thing your scale can have now.
Then there is the accuracy. The Mi scale is down to a best in class 50g (0.1 lb) accuracy which is twice as good as $150 scales like the Withings Smart Body Analyzer. This, of course, leads instantly to fun experiments. Can you believe that I lost a full pound during a 20 minute kettle bell workout?!? I could actually see the numbers dropping with each set. How much weight does drinking a glass of water add? Time to find out. Likely the scale sitting in your bathroom is only accurate to 0.5 lbs and wow do you ever feel inferior all of a sudden.
You may not think you need that kind of accuracy , but once you pair it with bluetooth syncing to your phone the potential really grows. The combo means that, instead of just stepping on a scale and saying “huh, look at that”, every one of those excessive data points is stored in phone. The result is that my weight tracking app can show me stats on my progress that help cut through all the noise. Weight tracking apps are only as good as the data you enter. The best thing about connected scale is that it removes all the effort and chances to forget to enter your data. Step on the scale and that's it. The scale's sensitivity also opens potential for new creative apps that can offer you deeper insights into your body’s inner working. The data all goes straight into HealthKit on iPhones (and probably whatever equivalent on Android?) for easy access from other apps with zero effort from me.
I can’t help it, using a well designed product just feels deeply satisfying. Every time I use this scale I love it. That said, it isn’t flawless. The number one challenge right now is that it isn’t being offered in Xiaomi’s US store yet. If you want one now for $58 you can buy it here. Half of that price is shipping. If it comes to the US store eventually it will likely be cheaper. The Chinese list price is about 15 USD. Beyond that here are the weaknesses which aren’t enough to keep me from being excited about it:
- No body fat measurement - If you want body fat measurements and connection to your phone then expect to spend $130 - $150. Also expect those body fat measurements to vary wildly and to be fairly inaccurate. Sorry. Body fat measurement is hard
- You will probably want a second app to analyze your weight results, luckily you already know of a great one
- Opening the battery door was a glorious struggle in which I narrowly prevailed. That battery door is a sick joke played against the rest of the scale and the entire world. Me and that battery door are not friends
- If you manage to stand off on the corner with all of your weight, the measurement will be slightly off. Notice in the first picture that it should be measuring 18.3 lbs for that kettlebell and iPhone. The Withings scale will yell at you if you do something wrong like this
- The imported version has a switch that is only labeled in Chinese
Here you can see the battery door of misery, the characters beneath the door which I had to use google translate to figure out (move it all the way left for units in pounds), and the fun icon the scale shows while updating its firmware
The competition? On the cheap side there are super sketchy scales on Amazon for cheap with reviews talking about their terrible apps and being off by 5–6 pounds. I just want you to know about them to avoid them. If you want to pay more you can get a Withings WS–30 which is almost identical to the Mi Scale except for the $100 price, or a Withings Smart Body Analyzer for $150 which adds things like Air quality, Heart Rate, Body Fat, and Wifi connectivity. Which are cool I guess? The Withings scales only have 100 g precision so I feel like I have mega bragging rights. There is also the Fitbit Aria for $130 which integrates with the Fitbit platform (wifi only) and measures body fat. Double the price and all you get is sketchy body fat measurements? Get these other scales outta my face.
So, I get it, I’ve left you with a hard decision. Why all of this ranting and raving for a product not even available in the US store yet? It may come to the US store without Chinese characters and be cheaper then, but then you have to wait and waiting is THE WORST. The point of this site is to keep you up on new products before they are cupcakes . It is also to get you thinking about what makes an excellent product. Conclusion: the Mi scale is an excellent product that serves its purpose efficiently, with beautiful design , and at about half the price of direct competitors.
Xiaomi is crushing it and I can’t wait to see what they bring out next. Pick up the Mi Scale here on GearBest for $58 shipped until it comes to the US store.
If not especially original ↩
That is the all in after shipping price ↩
diamond in the rough… diamond in the rough… diamond in the rough, we’ll get you there, I promise ↩
I don’t know how you evaluate your scales. Are you supposed to smell it? Are you some sort of professional scale evaluator? That sounds like a dumb job. I’m sorry, I had to say it. Who is paying you enough to support this dubious profession, anyway? ↩
Ok, fine, you probably don’t even need a scale, so I guess you are right, but hear me out ↩
Cupcakes is the catch all term for anything that everyone already knows about, is past its prime, and doesn’t know it’s dead yet. Try it in a sentence “man jump suits are totally cupcakes”. Yeah. That term suits you. Well done ↩
Um… also unoriginal… oh well ↩