Mio Fuse Review
By now, we’re pretty familiar with the kind of styles that fitness trackers employ – you know, sporty ones that match their fitness tracking function. Some of the ‘beefier’ ones tend to look like watches, which at times come off as utilitarian, while others steer towards the wristband style we’re all accustomed to seeing by now. The Mio Fuse at first appears to follow the latter, but there’s undeniably something flashy with the way it looks, going for more than that conventional look. In a segment that’s dominated by big names like Fitbit and Jawbone, it’ll require some unprecedented qualities to stand a chance in surviving.
- Mio Fuse
- Charging cradle
- Quick start guide
- Warranty information
Stylish and sporty, the silicone band makes it super comfy to wear.
Bravo! Impressively enough, the Mio Fuse incorporates one of the more flattering and flashy designs we’ve seen in the wearable fitness space in some time. Sure, it’s a wrist-worn styled fitness tracker, much like the collection that’s out there already, but what sets it apart is the almost futuristic style blended into a sporty wristband. Come to think of it, the design almost looks like the Nike Fuelband, but considerably more flexible thanks to its soft silicone band.
More than comfortable to wear by any means thanks to the rubbery textured material, it’s worth noting too that the Mio Fuse is fully capable of withstanding the sweatiest of workouts – more so, too, when it’s water resistant in up to 30m of water. As for the strap itself, it’s just like your ordinary watch clasp, as adjusting it to almost any length is done quickly and effortlessly. And mainly because of how it contours perfectly around our wrist, it never feels irritating to wear for long periods of time.
Our particular review unit sports the crimson color scheme, a black band with red accents, which blends and contracts nicely together. Alternatively, there’s also an aqua color that swaps the red accent color for aqua. On the underside, we have the components that make up its heart rate sensor. Just like most other sensors, it’s almost blinding when it’s on with its overpowering green glow. What really sets this fitness band apart from the bunch is the cool looking LED display dominating the majority of its façade.
Futuristic looking, the soft red glow of its LED display commands attention.
Its red LED lit display is huge in contrast to the band’s overall size, taking up much of the footprint along one side – and it’s immense compared to the screen on the Fitbit Charge! Similar to those scrolling LED billboard signs you might see on some store fronts, the subtle translucency of the silicone band gives the display a soft glow, which is never too overpowering under dim conditions, but still ample enough to make out in bright light. Information, of course, is scrolled through the LED display. However, our only wish was for it light up in different colors for even more variety.
Flanking the display are the dotted scroll touchpoints that allow us to scroll left and right with the display. They’re responsive and are indicated by these trio of raised dots on both sides of the display, while another timer touchpoint above the LED display enables its workout mode (we’ll talk more about it later).
Futuristic? You betcha it is! The ample size of the LED display and its subtle glow is definitely eye catching, especially at night where it’s instantly recognized by prying eyes.
Mio Go app
It’s just lacking the diversified fitness tools to make it versatile.
The data gathered by the Mio Fuse is all dissected, detailed, and presented using the Mio Go app, which is available for Android and iOS. We’ve dealt with our fair share of fitness apps, with the good and bad separated by how diversified their experiences can get. Unfortunately, the Mio Go app is pretty light in what it offers – both in the visual presentation and its secondary fitness features.
The main pane of the app is dedicated to our activity history, which displays our activities in chronological order. Of course, our daily results can be accessed through here, but there isn’t a section for viewing our monthly totals. When selecting a workout session, it’s nice that it provides the essential fitness data during that routine, so they include the heart rate statistics, pace, distance, and calories burned.
Unlike its rivals, the Mio Go app doesn’t do anything more than display data acquired by the Mio Fuse. Hence, there’s no calorie tracking utility, motivational support, or social aspect to the experience. It’s just a simple and straightforward app, nothing more.
Relying on good ‘ol Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity, we’re able to pair it to an iPhone 6 Plus with no issue. While connectivity is maintained up to 25 feet in our experience, there’s no utility to sniff out the location of the Mio Fuse in the event it’s misplaced somewhere around the house – nor can we do the opposite, like pinging our phone using the Mio Fuse.
While it works well for workouts, there’s no real-time heart rate tracking, smart functions, or sleep tracking.
First and foremost, it’s wonderful that our daily totals can all be viewed through the Mio Fuse’s display – so that consists of the time, steps, calories burned, distance, and goal percentage. In that regard, it serves its purpose in being a step tracker, giving us insight to our fitness activity on a daily basis. Holding down on the timer touchpoint places it into workout mode, which is the only time that the heart rate sensor kicks on – providing us with a more accurate calorie burn during our session. However, the Mio Fuse doesn’t offer real-time heart rate tracking like the Fitbit Charge HR and Basis Peak, which means that it can’t tell us what our resting heart rate is.
Beyond that, it can’t differentiate exactly what kind of activity we’re doing. Yes, it knows how many steps we’re taking, but it’s not smart enough by itself to tell us if we’re walking, running, or biking. In fact, after syncing it with the app, we have to dictate what kind of activity we did for that particular workout. And finally, there’s no sleep tracking feature with this, which is a bit of a shame considering it pretty much goes hand-in-hand with most fitness trackers.
As much as we’d like to say it’s the ultimate fitness tracker in its category, it’s far from it. Whereas some of its main rivals even manage to offer some ‘smart’ features, such as email and text message notifications, the Mio Fuse lacks any of the sort.
It’s a champ with its battery life!
True to the company’s claim, the Mio Fuse provides an ample 7 days of battery life from a full juice – that’s definitely above average in our books. In order to charge it, however, it requires using the proprietary charging cable that tucks away the USB cable on one side.
Without a doubt, the Mio Fuse has the stylish design to make people take notice of it. And it helps, too, that its LED display is a head turner when it’s activated. Most people will be instantly affixed to the Mio Fuse’s design, but it just can’t compete with the diversified experience and performance found in other comparable fitness trackers in its class.
Specifically, its $150 cost puts it in direct competition to things like the Fitbit Surge HR and Jawbone UP3. For the cost, it has the sporty and stylish design to make it the perfect companion for all of our workouts, but it lacks the scope that its rivals offer. It tracks our steps, but only measures our heart rate when it’s placed in workout mode. Its LED display is cool, but the app experience is elementary by the standards.
Certainly, there are plenty of good reasons to go with the Mio Fuse. It’s just a matter of tolerating its miniscule fitness tracking experience.