Amazfit GTS 4 Mini review - The compact smartwatch that gives you lots for your money
Case and connectivity: The compact smartwatch with an aluminum case
The Amazfit GTS 4 Mini comes in a lightweight case made of aluminum alloy (frame) and plastic (bottom). This gives the watch a nice look and means it weighs only 19 g - or 32 g with the strap. With a thickness of only 9 mm and a length and width of 42 and 37 mm respectively, the mini smartwatch truly lives up to its name.
A button can be found on the right side of the up to 5 ATM waterproof case. On the inside, the watch features a microphone for Amazon Alexa, all the usual health sensors, acceleration and ambient light sensors, a compass and a rotation motor for vibration.
The Amazfit GTS 4 Mini can be attached to your wrist using a silicon strap, which comes in the colors Midnight Black, Flamingo Pink, Mint Blue and Moonlight White. The watch's case comes in black, silver and gold.
A small issue with the strap: Although the clasp can be tightly adjusted with 5 mm spacing to accommodate an arm circumference of around 14 to 19 cm, the rest of the strap then has to be pushed through a hole between the arm and the bracelet after closing the pin buckle - which proves to be a bit fiddly in practice. A classic eyelet to pull through would be more practical here. Amazfit calls it a quick-release clasp, which found to be rather the opposite in practice.
Aside from GPS and Bluetooth 5.2 LE, there are unfortunately no other supported radio standards. There are no NFC, WLAN or mobile network connection options - although, this is to be expected for a device in this price range.
Setup and operation: Quick and easy
Setting up the watch is nothing new. Simply download the Zepp app for Android or iOS onto your smartphone (Android 7.0/iOS 12.0 and above) and launch it. After a quick registration (provided you don't already have an account), you can scan the QR code on the bottom of your watch in order to connect it to the app. Then, your smartwatch is connected to your phone and is ready for action.
You can control the watch via its touchscreen and the button on the side which brings up the menu. By swiping you can scroll up and down in the usual way. Tapping on the items requires a little bit of finesse due to the screen's small size.
The menu shows many of the watch's features as items, such as health and fitness, weather, music, alarm, calendar and settings. Many other features such as the compass, cycle tracking, stopwatch and countdown, phone searching, and remote camera controlling can be found by tapping "more". Swiping right takes you back one page.
On the home screen, you can swipe left and right to access different widgets. Swipe left and you can see tiles laying out today's activities, your current heart rate, the weather, Alexa shortcuts and sleep data. These widgets can be customized. Swipe down and you can access a menu which includes sleep mode, a flashlight and a few other features - swipe up and you can see your notifications. Nothing new, basically.
You can customize your home screen through some free and many paid watch faces. The standard face shows lots of information at a glance, such as time and date, activity rings, steps and calories, heart rate, battery status, and the weather. Additionally, the watch has its own app store where you can download free and paid apps to extend the watch's range of uses.
Calls and notifications
Although the smartwatch informs about incoming and missed calls, it doesn't offer any features that let you make calls directly from the watch.
You can decide which notifications from your phone you would like to see appear on the watch by selecting these via the Zepp app. Here, you can decide whether you would like to see calls, app warnings, reminders, incoming text messages, emails and goal notifications appear on your Amazfit GTS 4 Mini. In our test, syncing took no time at all.
Voice-controlled personal assistant
The phone supports Amazon Alexa - it just has to be activated using the app. The personal assistant can take questions using the built-in microphone and answers them with a pop-up on the screen. As the phone doesn't have a built-in speaker, Alexa can't talk back to you.
Health and fitness: The usual features are included
The Amazfit GTS 4 Mini offers the usual health features which are usually included with cheaper smartwatches. The biometric sensor BioTracker 3.0 PPG installed into the back of the phone allows for 24-hour heart rate, blood oxygen (SpO2) and stress monitoring. Completing the package are 120+ fitness programs and sleep tracking. EKG and blood pressure monitoring are not included - but this is to be expected at this price.
In the usual manner, the Amazfit GTS 4 Mini aims to encourage a healthy life and tracks the day's activities in order to do so. Familiar-looking rings display the day's steps, how often you stand up as well as your activity time.
In addition, the PAI function is supposed to encourage working out. All activities and certain sports that increase the heart rate are included and they result in a total score. Set target values are meant to motivate you to get moving.
Heart rate, heart rhythm and blood oxygen saturation
According to our measurements, the heart rate sensor doesn't work terribly accurately. At rest, the watch measured two beats more than our reference device (Polar H10 chest strap) - which is still okay. Under load, the measurements were accurate for the most part, but every now and again, we measured a deviation of almost 25 beats - which you can't really explain. We noted quite inaccurate pulse measurements on the Amazfit GTS 4, too.
The SpO2 sensor works much more reliably. Compared to a Braun Pulsoximeter 1, we noted a deviation of less than 2 per cent.
You can use the app to set how frequently you would like your pulse to be measured - from every 1 minute to every 30 minutes. You can also completely deactivate stress, blood oxygen and sleep monitoring in order to save some battery.
Amazfit's GTS 4 Mini can monitor sleep quality if you choose to do so. The watch itself offers a rudimentary evaluation of the length, quality and sleep phases. The app provides even more details. Unfortunately, there is no smart alarm clock.
The Amazfit GTS 4 Mini includes over 120 workout modes, which are sure to cover all the usual and lots of less popular sports and activities. As usual, you can select these from a long and customizable menu to start your workout.
Depending on the sport, the watch records a variety of data. Aside from your pulse, the watch also measures your route via GPS (for example when jogging, walking or riding a bike), your speed (including average) and the length of your workout. If you are rowing, the device also measures your strokes, and if you are skipping it measures your jumps.
After the workout, the watch and the app provide a detailed evaluation of the unit including the heart rate zones, the distance covered - if applicable - and the calories burned, among many other datasets. Practical, but absolutely standard.
GPS and navigation
The built-in GNSS on the Amazfit GTS 4 Mini supports the five satellite positioning systems GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, QZSS and Beidou. During our practical test, it measured our bike ride quite accurately compared to a more expensive Garmin Venu 2. The course fit and the distance also deviated only minimally. Unfortunately, the test device only measured twice as much altitude as the reference watch during our trip. The connection setup usually only took a few seconds in the test - exemplary.
Display: The smartwatch with a bright AMOLED screen
The GTS 4 Min is fitted with a high-quality AMOLED screen. At 1.65 inches, it is smaller than its big brother, the GTS 4 - and its resolution of 336 x 384 pixels with a density of 309 PPI is also less than the GTS 4.
However, at over 550 cd/m² with a brightness sensor, the built-in screen shines much brighter than in the two more expensive and larger models, the GTS 4 and GTR 4. Even without the sensor activated, it offers a good 520 cd/m², which is a remarkable result for this price range. Thus, the small GTS 4 Mini remains legible even in sunny weather. Only direct sunlight makes it a bit more difficult.
Its pulse width modulation is also higher than in the two higher-quality sister models. The "little brother" doesn't have to shy away at all in this regard. Its black reproduction is perfect, as is typical for OLEDs. Certain colors could still be a bit more vibrant. The screen's viewing angles are very stable, so it can also be viewed well from awkward angles.
The display's behavior can be configured in the settings. In addition to an always-on option, which naturally affects the battery life, there are various options for automatically turning the display on and off after touching the screen and raising your arm. The latter worked quite well in our test, but unfortunately not always 100 per cent reliably.
Screen Flickering / PWM (Pulse-Width Modulation)
|Screen flickering / PWM detected||360 Hz|
The display backlight flickers at 360 Hz (Likely utilizing PWM) .
The frequency of 360 Hz is relatively high, so most users sensitive to PWM should not notice any flickering. However, there are reports that some users are still sensitive to PWM at 500 Hz and above, so be aware.
In comparison: 53 % of all tested devices do not use PWM to dim the display. If PWM was detected, an average of 18694 (minimum: 5 - maximum: 3846000) Hz was measured.
Performance and battery life: Smooth handling and sufficient endurance
Unfortunately, Amazfit haven't revealed which chipset and how much memory is installed. However, the processor does a good job in everyday use and in our test, it called up the various menus and functions smoothly for the most part.
Inside the watch is a 270 mAh battery. The manufacturer promises 15 days of runtime with one battery charge in average use. Of course, that is always a somewhat difficult thing to grasp. In our test, the Amazfit GTS 4 Mini lasted a week and more at a stretch with frequent use. Of course, this also depends on the selected settings, e.g. for the display (brightness, AoD). If you want to take it to the extreme, you can run the watch using energy-saving mode for well over a month away from an external power source.
The charging time with the included magnetic charger is around two hours. The USB-A cable, which is about 40 cm long, could do with being a bit longer.
Verdict: A compact smartwatch with no major weaknesses
If you are on the hunt for a small smartwatch that won't cost you a fortune but still looks great and has lots of functions - then look no further than the Amazfit GTS 4 Mini.
This compact model, which can be purchased for $120, features all the usual things you'd expect from a modern smartwatch - and more. This includes its own app store as just one example.
With a battery life of over a week even during intensive use, the Amazfit GTS 4 Mini showed sufficient endurance in our test. The bright AMOLED panel and the fast and accurate GNSS connection are also quite impressive.
This wearable is especially suitable for users who do not want to wear a bulky smartwatch or who simply have smaller wrists. Those who are a bit heftier would be better off with the "full-grown" models GTS 4 and GTR 4 from Amazfit.
Price and availability
The present review sample was made available to the author as a loan by the manufacturer or a shop for the purposes of review. The lender had no influence on this review, nor did the manufacturer receive a copy of this review before publication. There was no obligation to publish this review.