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3A couple years ago I was one of the earlier adopters in fitness tracker with the jawbone. Since that unit became faulty with a defunct vibration mode, I sort of stopped using it, until I was introduced to Mi Band by Yee Hou, Xiaomi’s answer to activity tracker than costs only RM 69 instead of the usual RM 300-400 from other brands.

This is my short review and why you may want to think of getting one.

mi band on my wrist and being charged
mi band on my wrist and being charged

WHAT IS AN ACTIVITY TRACKER AND WHY DO I NEED ONE?

Well, an activity tracker is basically something that you wear on you 24/7 and tracks what you do to a certain extend. In the case of Mi Band, it tracks your step counts as well as the number of hours you sleep. You can usually view these information on a connected mobile application or the tracker itself.

Additionally, some activity trackers also has reminder functions, calorie counts, alarms, or even connect to heart rate monitors.

In the case of Xiaomi’s Mi Band, it has the following functions worth mentioning, additionally, it is paired with the phone with Bluetooth 4.0.

  • step counting
  • sleep tracking
  • alarms
  • alerts
  • rope skipping & sit ups

mi band as a pedometer
mi band as a pedometer

STEP COUNT FUNCTION:

The one feature every activity tracker has is the step count. In essence, this is just a pedometer that counts pretty much every single step you take throughout the day.

Mi Band’s feature is pretty basic, it’ll try to “guess” when you are running versus walking, but I find it generally doing a pretty poor job of guessing, though the step count is quite spot on.

The default goal is 8,000 steps per day, once you reach 1/3 of that, the band blinks one of 3 LEDs when you bring the band up from your wrist in a “look at your watch” gesture. 2 LEDs when you reach 2/3, and all 3 plus vibration when you hit the 8000 mark.

However, the gesture doesn’t always work, and I prefer to use the application to view the step count anyway.

On the app, you can also view a breakdown of today’s steps, and view a history of previous days/weeks/monthly average. However, there is no way to view detailed breakdown of yesterday or any other day’s count. There is also no web-version of the app.

mi band sleep tracking
mi band sleep tracking

SLEEP TRACKING:

Unlike other fitness tracker that requires you to manually enter a sleep mode, Mi Band tracks you sleeping pattern at night automatically, and with that there’s pros & cons.

You will never forget to manually click a button before you go to sleep, but at the same time, the band has no ability to track afternoon naps. It’ll merely come up as inactivity period(s).

You also cannot edit sleep time on the application. I wish this could change in the future via updates.

However, it still does its job quite well 90% of the time, giving you a pretty good idea of how much sleep (or the lack of) you get throughout the week.

mi band alarm & charging
mi band alarm & charging

ALARM, BATTERY, & OTHER FUNCTIONS:

Another neat feature of Mi Band is the alarm function. You can set 3 recurring alarms and the band will vibrate and blink at those set time. It’s a great way to wake up without having to bother the person sleeping next to you (or at the same room).

The battery life on Mi Band is advertised at 1 month per charge, and from experience it is actually even better than advertised. I still have 27% left at day 36. I’ll trade not having a display for long battery life any day.

Mi Band also has other, less useful features like being able to share your target achieving streaks or daily step counts on social media platforms such as Facebook or WeChat, and you can also track sit ups and rope jumping, though I’ve never really bothered with those.

CONCLUSION:

Mi Band is a great little piece of gadget that is absolutely worth the price you pay for it. Sure, the functions are pretty basic, but it does it well and has excellent battery life to boot.

If you’re looking into having a basic tracker to be a healthier and more active person, Mi Band is not a bad way to start.

A few days before the CNY holiday season got started, together with a few familiar faces, I was invited to the launch of PETRONAS Chinese New Year Coffee Break at the Tapah R&R’s PETRONAS station.

did you grab your free coffee this CNY balik kampung season?
did you grab your free coffee this CNY balik kampung season at Petronas?

For those who are not familiar, the PETRONAS CNY Coffee Break is one of the CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) programs run by PETRONAS Dagangan Berhad. This particular program has been running for the past 16 years.

It is actually a very simple program – PDB invites motorists to the participating service stations along major travel routes to collect a special PETRONAS Coffee Break pouch together with other goodies, including a can of Wonda coffee, Munchy’s Oat Krunch, Lexus Chocolate and Chinese New Year ang pow packets; and you don’t even need to purchase anything to collect the pouch.

PDB Managing Director & CEO Mohd Ibrahimnuddin Mohd Yunus
PDB Managing Director & CEO Mohd Ibrahimnuddin Mohd Yunus
drumming up the lion dance

As part of the same program, PETRONAS also contributes RM 20,000 in PRIMAX 95 fuel for St. John Ambulance of Malaysia in their effort to patrol major highways. This particular aspect of fuel contribution has been carried out for the past 21 consecutive years.

With the current fuel price, that translate to some 11764 liters of fuel. That’s plenty of miles on the highway.

everyone gets a free coffee break pouch
everyone gets a free PETRONAS coffee break pouch

PDB Managing Director & CEO Mohd Ibrahimnuddin Mohd Yunus and Retail Business Senior General Manager Shaharuddin Muhammad Sidek were on the ground and launched the program by initiating the lion dance (have you ever see a lion inside Mesra store?) and giving out the coffee break pouch to several unsuspecting motorists. They also took the opportunity to wish all Malaysians who are celebrating CNY a happy and prosperous Chinese New Year, and a safe journey home.

WeiZhi, Lex, KY, TianChad, Abang Nara & Budiey with the good people from PDB
WeiZhi, Lex, KY, TianChad, Abang Nara & Budiey with the good people from PDB

The PETRONAS Coffee Break program was held on the 14 to 15 February and 21 to 22 February at 39 participating PETRONAS Stations. I’m pretty sure similar program will be held the next CNY season.

For more information, head to www.mymesra.com.my. Also, follow MD/CEO on Twitter at @ibrahimnuddin to get to know him more!

Happy Goat Year!

February 19, 2015 11 Comments

I want to wish everyone a Happy Goat year, Gong Xi Fa Cai!


Haze performed a speed painting piece of Chinese art at Gardens (art misfits)

Enjoy the holidays!

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If you’re a Samsung mobile device user and haven’t heard about GALAXY Life App, this is definitely a post you’d want to pay attention to.

Undoubtedly many of you has already heard about the different hardware and software features the latest Samsung gadgets carry (such as the thumbprint scanner & heartbeat sensor on Galaxy S5 that I’m using since late last year), but did you know that there’s a host of other privileges that comes with owning a Samsung device?

Enter the GALAXY Life App.

The video above showcase a snippet of what the users of GALAXY Life App got to enjoy throughout the year of 2014, check it out.

First launched on the 28th Feb, 2014, the application has amassed over 2.1 million GALAXY members in Malaysia thus far. I am happy to be one of them, though I only started last December.

This application basically bring you different rewards, privileges, deals, freebies, and promotions every week/months based on where you are. For example, if you’re at KL and there’s a Baskin Robbins promotion going on, it’ll show you how far you are currently from one of the outlets. Get there, flash the app to the staff, and got yourself a free scoop of ice cream (I did several weeks ago, happy).

Here are some of the highlights from events happened in 2014, brought to you by Samsung Malaysia Electronics

Starlight Cinema:

  • Date : 13 to 21 June 2014
  • Venue : Bukit Kiara Equestrian Park

GALAXY members were treated to some of the biggest hollywood blockbusters over the period of one week in June, there were Man of Steel, Pacific Rim (I hope there’s a sequel), Fast and Furious 6, and even classics such as Sound of Music.

It had the ambiance of being in a summer fair, and complete with foods from 7-Eleven, Burger Bakar Kaw Kaw, Coffea Coffee, Crazy Potato, Gong Cha, Pizza Hut and SUB18 Gelato as well.

Lake Garden festivals

Kuala Lumpur Lake Gardens Festival:

  • Date : 15 to 17 August 2014
  • Venue : Kuala Lumpur Lake Gardens

I’m pretty bummed I never got to this event, but it sure looked like one of the most awesome festivals that’s packed with fun. I mean, there were free hot air balloon ride, flying fox, and low rope! Those are my kind of thrills, now where do I get a hot air balloon ride in Malaysia?

Other than the activities, there were also concerts by Richard Clayderman & Sheila Majid.

The event was actually a prelude to the 57th Merdeka and jointly presented by Universal Music Malaysia, Samsung GALAXY Life and Mojo Live in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism, Culture, and Arts.

Hunger Games

Movie screenings & other deals:

One of the movie screenings I went to last year curtesy of being a GALAXY member was Hunger Games: The Mocking Jay. I thought the first part of the 3rd movie in the trilogy left something to be looking forward to, and hopefully Samsung is going to treat us again for another screening to complete the Hunger Games saga later this year.

Starbucks

Another deal that had overwhelming response amongst GALAXY members was FREE one grande Christmas Beverage on 18 Dec from 7pm to 9pm at Starbucks. It was only 2 hours but you can imagine the number of drinks that went through the various Starbucks counters that evening.

Well, don’t miss out, head to Google Play Store to download the application for free. Find out more at www.samsung.com/my/galaxylife.

By the way, Easy Taxi is teaming up with Samsung GALAXY Life and they’re giving out 3 free taxi rides worth up to RM 20 per ride, valid until 31st January 2015.

For more information about Samsung GALAXY Life, please visit http://www.samsung.com/my/galaxylife, Samsung Mobile Malaysia Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/samsungmobilemalaysia or follow hashtag, #mygalaxylife.

*Brought to you by Samsung Malaysia Electronics.

If you’ve read my previous posts about Transitions Signature lens glasses, you’d already be quite familiar with the technology behind it. The lens that changes from clear to darker tint with the presence of UV light with the help of Chromea7 technology.

So, how am I using this in everyday life?

Transitions lenses clear up when going into tunnel
Transitions lenses clear up when going into tunnel

Lets start with driving.

I have a mild case of astigmatism so driving with a pair of prescription glasses is something I usually do. Since my car is not tinted at all, what I like about Transitions® Signature™ lenses here is that I can always just drive into the Smart Tunnel with just one pair of glasses. When I’m in the tunnel, the lenses are clear. When I’m out of the tunnel, my lenses are tinted. Simple as that. No more switching between a pair of regular sunglasses and clear glasses.

in hair saloon and alfresco dining

in hair salon and alfresco dining

The lenses also work very well both indoor and outdoor. Since it’s activated by UV light, the lenses are always very clear indoors. The above pictures illustrate the differences between me in a hair salon (with my hair dresser hiding behind) and having a glass of watermelon juice by the walkway after the haircut. The slight tint is due to the cloudy day with some UV presence. Yes, there’s UV light even on a cloudy day!

me with Chaly, the bike that's older than most of you!

me with Chaly, the bike that’s older than most of you!

Riding my old school Honda Chaly is another great application for the glasses. Regardless with the visor up or down (my visor is not tinted at all), the lenses work predictably in the way the tint changes. Again, when it’s bright in the day, the lenses become dark, and when you ride in the night, the lenses turn clear. You don’t have to use different glasses for day and night riding.

Transitions lenses work great for mountain biking as well
Transitions lenses work great for mountain biking as well

One of my many hobbies is mountain bike riding.

For those who ride, eye protection is also something very important (other than helmet, gloves, knee pads etc) as there are tree branches, debris, and other stuff that may get into your eyes in the trail. Transitions® Signature™ glasses work great in this situation not only as a form of protection, but also adapting to the various lighting conditions in mountain bike trails. Very often along a mountain bike trail, there are many twists and turns like a stretch of shaded path covered by with trees and open-air slopes that are exposed to the sun. So within a short 10 meter span, the lighting can change from bright to dark then bright again. My Transitions® Signature™ Lenses are smart enough to adapt quickly and automatically to the mid tint when I’m riding under the trees and change to a dark tint when I’m riding in the open.

Well, you could say that Transitions® lenses work great in pretty much everyday situations, now if there’s a swimming or diving goggle that has this technology..

For More Info – http://www.transitions.com/en-my/products/transitions-signature/

Where To Buy – transitions.com/en-my/where-to-buy/