Garmin, a long standing manufacturer of fitness gadgets and GPS devices, has just announced the launch of the Garmin Vivosmart 3 and Vivofit for kids in Singapore. The Vivosmart 3 adds on to Garmin’s big lineup of fitness devices and seeks to be an attractive offering to active working people who want to keep track of their fitness health and stress levels.
Garmin Vivosmart 3 – less stress, more fitness!
Fitness features for the everyday active user
The Garmin Vivosmart 3 is Garmin’s latest wearable targeted at individuals who exercise regularly but also want to keep track of their stress levels and intensity throughout the day. It is suited for both beginners to exercise, and intermediate to experienced fitness fanatics. This iteration of Vivofit incorporates the entire laundry list of fitness features found in the Vivosmart HR and other Garmin devices – it tracks steps, calories, floors climbed, intense minutes, heart rate (24/7) and sleep. Thanks to Garmin’s Move IQ technology, all of these stats are tracked automatically and quite accurately.
For individuals who love strength training, the Garmin Vivosmart 3 also tracks your exercise sessions with the new Strength Training activity. Upon activation, the Garmin Vivosmart 3 recognizes each rep done and helps users to keep track of every rep in their set.
Fitness features for the more advanced fitness fanatics
The V02 max measurement is simply a numerical measurement of your body’s ability to consume oxygen, and is important to individuals who exercise and run a lot. A high V02 max measurement means that a person’s body can take in more oxygen and deliver it to their muscles, enabling them to run faster and work harder as compared to a person with a lower V02 max level. Most people calculate this manually with a formula, but Garmin and other wearable manufacturers such as Fitbit have created a way to measure V02 automatically and quickly.
Fitness age is Garmin’s measurement of how physically fit a person is for his or her age, weight, height and overall health. A healthy looking, 30 year old person may look chiseled on the outside but may actually have a fitness level of a 50 year old – and the Garmin Vivosmart 3 has a way of measuring that after doing a brief test of the user’s fitness.
Less stress with stress-tracking and guided breathing
Garmin has also added a brand new feature we find very interesting – stress tracking and guided breathing. It goes without a doubt that Singapore is one of the most stressful places in the world – our schools, workplaces and everyday lives are packed all the time and very fast paced.
To help users facing daily stress, the Garmin Vivosmart 3 tracks stress levels 24/7. When users are not on the move, the Vivosmart 3 tracks heart rate variability, which in turn is used to calculate and measure stress level, displayed as a wedge graph right on the device. This makes a person’s stress levels easy to gauge, and encourages relaxation to lower stress level.
The device also tracks stress long term, and displays a longer timeline on Garmin Connect, Garmin’s online fitness metric dashboard. This long term measurement of stress and fitness is great, as it can help customers identify patterns and make lifestyle changes to avoid or better cope with stress-inducing situations.
Smart design and features for the modern user
The device is extremely slim and sleek, with a band width of just 10mm – and features a minimalist ‘hidden’ OLED touch screen display, which is only visible when activated via alerts of notifications. To conserve battery and keep a minimalist design, the screen fades out and completely disappears from view when not in use.
The Vivosmart 3’s display shows the time, weather, and all the other fitness metrics mentioned above. It displays call, text, Whatsapp and other notifications when paired with a smartphone – a welcome feature for any busy smartphone user today. Users can even control music from the Vivosmart 3 or send an alert to locate a misplaced smartphone.
Users can wake the Vivosmart 3 by raising their arm just as they do to tell the time on a watch. To interact with the device, users can simply swipe up and down to navigate the various categories, or tap + hold to access more in-depth features. The interface is relatively intuitive and simple, but takes some time to getting used to, especially if you are familiar with non-touch fitness trackers.
The device is also waterproof up to 5ATM, so you can bathe, swim or even snorkel with it on your wrist. The device has a battery life of five days, and is charged via a proprietary pogo pin USB cable.
Unfortunately, the Vivosmart 3 does not have GPS, unlike Garmin’s higher end devices. We also hoped the device would come with Ez-link functionality like on the original Vivosmart, but unfortunately, it’s not present either. No word if there are plans for an ez-link version of the Vivosmart 3, but Garmin has noted the positive reception to the ez-link tracker. We hope that they will consider adding this feature in the future.
Price and availability
The Vivosmart 3 is available in black (regular and large sizes), blue and purple (regular) and sells at SGD 229. The device will be sold from May 12 onwards at Challenger, Best Denki and other electronics outlets, and the first 150 customers will get $20 Capitaland vouchers as part of Garmin’s launch promotion.
A decent competitor and a great start for kid’s fitness
Overall, the Garmin Vivosmart 3 looks like a great entry into Garmin’s huge lineup of fitness devices. They are going straight at Fitbit for this one – the device is stylish, sleek and sports many competitor features such as VO2 tracking, guided breather, heart rate monitoring and sleep + fitness monitoring. It also sports unique features such as stress tracking and automated rep counting.
We think that the stress tracking feature is fantastic and a wonderful way for Singaporeans to keep track of their emotional and mental well being. In this day an age where an intense work life is the norm, Singaporeans need stress tracking more than ever. At S$229, this tracker is slightly affordable for its class – but considering that you get a laundry list of fitness features, it is a good buy if you want to kick-start the fitness journey or find a better way to track your activities.
We will be doing a review of the Vivosmart 3, so stay tuned to Thirty Seven Tech and Techout Singapore for more news on Garmin and fitness trackers!