Garmin vivofit 3 review

     
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The Garmin Vivofit 3 is a sub-$100 fitness tracker that"s hoping to lure in the same prospective sầu owners that"ll also be casting an eye over the Fitbit Alta, the Misfit Ray and the Jawbone UP2.

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Like the Vivofit & last year"s Vivofit 2, this is no frills tracking, so you don"t get the GPS or heart rate monitoring skills of the Vivosmart HR+. But Garmin is making a big push on making its wearables more pleasing on the eye & it"s even given the budget tracker a makeover.


Garmin has already been impressing us with its lakiểm tra line of trackers & running watches, so can we add the Vivofit 3 lớn that list? We"ve sầu been tracking steps, sleeps, runs và more to find out whether you should be wearing one around your wrist.

Garmin Vivofit 3: Design

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If you"ve been closely following the evolution of the Vivofit then you"ll notice two pretty big changes with the third instalment. The first is the screen, which has shrunk considerably since the first version và the micro updated Vivofit 2. The 64 x 63 resolution display is more than half the form size than the one on the more expensive sầu Vivosmart HR+ as well và it"s a bit of a backwards step in our opinion. We were fans of the longer, slimmer display & it seems the decision khổng lồ go smaller is linked to the other big kiến thiết change.

Garmin has always put function above khung and pretty much every running watch or fitness tracker it"s ever released has worked from the same durable, robust và generally unattractive thiết kế blueprint. But times are changing. Trackers lượt thích the Fitbit Alta và the Misfit Ray have sầu raised the style stakes, while Jawbone"s trackers remain some of the most attractive sầu khổng lồ wear, so it was time for Garmin lớn vì chưng something about it.

It"s now dishing out a whole collection of different bands letting you pop out the sensor module & drop it inkhổng lồ another more "feminine và fabulous" trang chính. The interchangeable accessory bands include a range by designer Jonathan Adler và a pachồng of two costs $39.99.

We were stuông xã with one of the standard straps that now features a more textured finish and it"s as low key and inoffensive sầu looking as you"re going to get. We"ve sầu tried out some of the sculpted bands and seen some Adler designs up cđại bại và we"re not sure Fitbit, Misfit & Jawbone have sầu much too worry about here on that front. The additional bands still look a little cheap and nasty.


Garmin Vivofit 3 rivals

The strap is at least light & comfortable to lớn wear 24/7. It comes in regular and extra large sizes so should be accommodating for most wrists and there"s a new clasp mechanism that aims lớn make it fit more securely & largely it works. There"s now a twisting buckle khổng lồ clip the clasp inlớn place, but it did manage to fall off at least once in our time using it. For swimmers, it is waterproof and is slapped with a 5ATM rating, which means you can take it inlớn a pool up to 50 metres depth.

Below the screen is a single physical button which is your means lớn navigate through the different screens, including a watch face và calendar date. Pressing & holding the button will turn off a dyên backlight, while holding it down gives you access khổng lồ pairing & syncing modes along with quichồng access khổng lồ the stopwatch mode.

Garmin Vivofit 3: Activity Tracking

When it comes to tracking data, the Vivofit 3 offers the basics, but does try khổng lồ cram in a few extras from its pricer devices. It"ll count và measure steps, distance, calories and automatically trachồng sleep. The onboard accelerometer can also measure treadmill running although accuracy can be hit và miss. There"s no altimeter khổng lồ measure elevation or a optical heart rate sensor on board, but you can still pair with a heart rate monitor chest strap lượt thích you could with its predecessors.

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Essential reading: How lớn use your fitness tracker khổng lồ actually get fit

It records intensity minutes to more accurately capture the time you"ve sầu spent working out during the day & also supports Garmin"s Move IQ software, which means it will automatically recognise a range of activities including running, cycling & swimming & record them in the Garmin Connect companion tiện ích. We"ve sầu tried it running và swimming and it works well, but the data is basic. It will register activities adding it to lớn the calendar in the Garmin Connect app but will only record duration và start time.

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For step & sleep tracking accuracy, we"re pretty happy with how the Vivofit 3 fared against the Jawbone UP3. Step counts were in the same ball park as were the sleep stats offering a simple break down of deep và light sleep. As we"ve said many times before, the algorithms that fitness trackers employ lớn determine this data differ from one company to lớn the next, so the best we can ask for is that the data is not wildly off.

Data accuracy is of course just one piece of the puzzle. There"s also the motivation aspect lớn address. Garmin"s trackers vì a better job of this than most và that lies largely with its Move alert bar and tự động goal features. The Move sầu bar, which fills up when you"ve sầu been inactive sầu for a long period of time now sends an audible bleep to tell you khổng lồ get up và move. Because the bar is crammed right up inside the small display, it"s a little easier lớn ignore, although the audible alert does its job adequately well. It"s the tự động goal that"s really the success story lớn getting you moving more, adjusting step goals based on your daily progress (or laông xã of).

Garmin Vivofit 3: App

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Garmin Connect is trang chủ to your data and remains a more complicated place lớn spkết thúc time in when you compare it to Fitbit, Jawbone and Misfit companion apps. There"s so many tabs, dropdown menus và sections making it overwhelming for a fitness tracker newcomer.

The Snapshots tab gives you a quichồng overview of things lượt thích steps, sleep and offers the ability to connect to lớn MyFitnessPal to feed in calorie counting data. Keep swiping và you"ll can drill a little deeper inlớn data. Then there"s a lot of other sections you"ll probably never end up touching. That includes the Garmin Connect IQ store that"s only built for Garmin"s sports watches & smartwatches, not a device like this.



You can adjust some basic device settings like turning off the Move sầu alert tones or choose a different watch face but the split screen mode is pretty pointless on such a small screen.

The last thing khổng lồ talk about here is Garmin Insights. This is essentially Garmin"s way of finally saying that it"s not enough lớn just record your data, now it"s time lớn put it into context. Tucked away in the settings, we received messages about increasing the auto goal based on previous step counts và telling us not to oversleep over the weekover. It"s not quite the cấp độ of sophistication you get with Jawbone"s smart coaching, but it"s certainly a step in the right direction & should ideally feature more prominently on the phầm mềm.

Garmin Vivofit 3: Battery Life

This is the easiest section to lớn write about the Vivofit 3 and that"s because you"ll get year long worth of tracking. It uses a CR1632 coin cell battery that you commonly find nestled inside an analogue watch, so there"s no proprietary charging cable lớn carry around, and you won"t have sầu to lớn worry about it dying on you for a while.


Chuyên mục: Tin Tức