​Garmin Vivoactive review

Forget Android Wear, the Vivoactive could be the first sports lover's smartwatch

Up until the Garmin Vivoactive, the perfect fitness device for the truly active person was a pipe dream.

Traditional fitness trackers are terrible for actual sport, and offer such base level insights that they're almost useless for people who take their fitness seriously.

Wareable verdict: Garmin Vivofit 2 review

If you like to get active, a GPS running watch was the best fit for runners and cyclists – but most are expensive and only useful when you're pounding the pavements. And what about people who like more than one sport?

For the active person the perfect fitness device did not exist.

But along came the Garmin Vivoactive. Arguably the company's first smartwatch, it promises full notifications on the wrist and a dizzying array of sports tracking – and at $249 it's reasonably priced, too. But is it the perfect sports watch? We put it through its paces to find out.

Garmin Vivoactive: Features

Before getting into the nitty gritty of the Vivoactive, it's worth running through its impressive array of features.

First, as you'd expect from a Garmin device, it features a variety of sports tracking features– and with the addition of GPS, it's a powerful proposition. That means that running, cycling, walking and swimming are all tracked, and with the accuracy of a GPS system. No accelerometer guess work, proper tracking from the best in the business.

A big draw for many will be the addition of golf tracking. Using the built in GPS and Garmin's gigantic repository of 38,000 courses, you can get a stripped back version of the company's golf watches, with yardages to the front, centre and back of the green.

That sums up the features of the Vivoactive in a nutshell. It's like a stripped back version of Garmin's huge range of dedicated sports wearables, all rolled into one. A jack-of-all-trades that does the essentials, which for most people, will be completely sufficient.

In addition to the sports tracking, the Garmin Vivoactive acts as a smartwatch and fitness tracker, too. It keeps tabs on your daily steps and nightly sleep, and prompts you to move about if you're sat around for too long – and while the analysis isn't as in-depth as a Fitbit or Jawbone device, for people who are genuinely active, those details don't matter that much.

The final aspect of the Garmin Vivoactive's Holy Trinity of wearable features is the notifications, which make the device the company's first true smartwatch. It pairs to your smartphone to deliver a host of notifications to the wrist – and it's one of the most impressively open ecosystems we've used – outside of Android Wear.

Out of the box the Vivoactive hoovers up texts, calls, WhatsApp, tweets, Uber alerts – basically anything from your smartphone goes to the wrist. Some may argue that it's a little overbearing, adding to your 'digital noise' that a lot of wearables are now trying to solve. But given the likes of the Basis Peak and Fitbit Surge have launched recently with absurdly limited notifications, it's a refreshing change.

Yet the Garmin never feels overwhelming. Notifications disappear after around 10 seconds, and are stored in the notifications menu, which is accessed by swiping right.

As you may have guessed from the swimming tracking, the Garmin Vivoactive is also waterproof to 5ATM, which means you can swim down to 50m safely.

Garmin Vivoactive: Design

From the impressive list of features, it seems Garmin has produced a miracle device, and it certainly belies its $249price. In fact, in many ways, it's four $249 smartwatches and sports watches rolled into one.

However, when it comes to design, the whole thing starts to unravel.

The design of the watch itself is a big throwback to the square-faced watches of 2013, and it looks uncannily like a first generation Sony SmartWatch. And in case anyone confuses that with a compliment, it couldn't be further from a positive.

The only thing the Vivoactive has going for it visually is its relative thinness, which, at 8mm, is impressive.

The visual appearance gets worse. Nestled between the chasm-like bezels is a low-res 205 x 148 LCD touchscreen, that's had its brightness turned down to a point where it's illegible in dull conditions. The left hand button briefly turns on the backlight, for around five seconds.

It's a way to save on battery, and it has yielded results but at quite a cost. The low-res screen finishes off a fairly mediocre design job, and the result is that despite the Garmin Vivoactive being in many ways our perfect smartwatch, we just don't want to wear it.

Perhaps the complaints over the screen would be mitigated if it was held within a better overall design, but no-one wants to be seen out in the evening with the Vivoactive on their arm.

Garmin Vivoactive: Activity tracking

After the extreme negativity of the Garmin's design, the tracking elements are a return to happier areas.

The step and sleep tracking, in honesty, are a mixed bag. We had no complaints over the steps, yet the goals seem bizarrely set – especially if you have come from a 10,000 a day type set up. They can be tweaked and set within the app, however.

The sleep tracking is fairly mundane too. You get a graph showing your time spent asleep and how restful you were – yet certainly falls behind the likes of Withings and Jawbone for sleep tracking.

When it comes to sports, however, it all changes. The presence of GPS means your runs will be accurately tracked, with live pace information and distances, just as you'd expect from a dedicated running watch. That also goes for cycling, swimming and walking too.

While some of the advanced information such as vertical oscillation or VO2 max aren't for 90% of runners, the Vivoactive has your needs covered. It even works out your cadence (steps per minute) from the wrist, which is an unusual feature for wrist-worn wearables.

We did take the Vivoactive out to test the golf features, but it seems the feature hadn't been activated by Garmin yet, so we're looking into the problem and will update the review.

If you want to get really detailed about your fitness, you can pair the Vivoactive with one of Garmin's heart rate chest straps, to have the data pulled in with the rest of your information.

Garmin Vivoactive: The app

The Vivoactive syncs with the Garmin Connect smartphone app, which is used to view your activity details, daily steps and settings.

Garmin Connect is a huge fitness platform, and as well as the powerful app, is a huge online portal that enables you to do everything from earn badges to map out runs.

The mobile app is clearly laid out, putting daily activity tracking at the top, and individual workouts, in chronological order at the bottom. All the data is then shown off on clear graphs, offering incredible detail about your workouts, all from your smartphone.

We also have to call out the bulletproof syncing, which also impressed. When we fired up the app, it synced within seconds, every time. So many devices have had such flakey Bluetooth syncing (we're looking at you Basis) the experience has been infuriating. Top marks to Garmin.

Garmin Vivoactive: Battery life

Garmin claims a three week battery life with 10 hours of GPS tracking, and while we found it to be slightly generous compared to our findings, it's still extremely impressive.

With all-day use we found that a week would be a rough estimate with heavy use of notifications but no tracked sport. A round of golf ate away around half the battery, which does back up the 10 hours of GPS tracking, which means a days hiking is well within its reach.

Garmin Vivoactive
By Garmin
For the fitness fanatic, the Garmin Vivoactive is not just one of the best sports watches, but the best smartwatches out there. For the first time, Garmin has blended an incredible set of fitness features with top notch notifications, to create the first truly every day sports wearable. However, the dated design and questionable screen tech call into doubt whether anyone would want to wear the device every day, and that's a crying shame.

  • Loads of sports tracked
  • Great battery life
  • Notifications aplenty
  • Uninspiring design
  • Really dull, low-res screen
  • Sleep tracking is terrible

What do you think?

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  • Wayne·

    Had  this watch for just under a week now, and I really like it.  All the points in the review are valid, but it sits comfortably on the wrist, appears to track accurately, and the included GPS has meant that I only need one device.  Syncing with the mobile app is quick and easy.  Turning bluetooth off on the device unless you are syncing will improve battery life, which has seemed reasonable so far.  Good to have all the information handy until you can get to a PC to move it across.   The watch replaces my Vivofit, and the only downside is that, whilst you use the same app, your step goal doesn't transfer so it will take a while for the auto-step total to be challenging.  Doesn't stop you from being active, though!

  • messus·

    Hmm, funny with design, not everyone see the same :) - I agree the LCD brightness could have been better, and the shape of the watch slightly smaller (rounder corners?). However, to me it looks ok, and is absolutely wearable every day. Also battery lasts for days. And compared to existing alternatives from Garmin (FR920XT, epix), they either look like toys from a Kinder-egg, or a weapon from the US Army, so there is actually no option. The Polar V800 looks kinda good, but nowhere close in functionality.

    The Fitbut Surge is a joke (nice try Fitbit), the Basis One and the PulseOn are also terrible for serious athletes. The MIO Fuse the only optical sensor giving close to acceptable readings for HRM is nowhere near in functionality or battery life. So there really is no option to the Garmin Vivoactive. And to me it looks, well, better than most sports-smart-watches out there :)

    Only bad thing with the Vivoactive is the lack of a custom workout mode, meaning you have to use eg the indoor mode, and re-define it in Connect after workout. Hopefully Garmin will listen to me and add/fix this in a close FW release.

    • thehababe·

      why is the surge a joke? I'm looking into buying one because of the heart rate reading and running . . . Though I would love it were waterproof 

      • Dedicated·

        After owning 7 fitbit products in 5 years I've come to the conclusion they're designed to fail. The "wristband" style latch is prone to coming loose if you are active wearing it and work up a sweat. If you do manual labor and use your hands a lot a minor rub against something unlatches it as well. Other models develop charging issues over time, the contacts corrode, again because you wear them to workout and sweat. There is as much as a 10% accuracy difference between different models of fitbit. I've worn 2 at once under different accounts and one gives more steps working at your desk compared to actually being active. Playing guitar with your fitbit on your strumming hand certainly adds to the count, the accuracy downside of accelerometer based tracking.

  • poulan·

    I hear it's a transreflective screen that would work much better than other technologies in direct sunlight... not sure if the reviewer was aware of this.

    • hash·

      Yes indeed, because of that it has very good visibility in direct sunlight. In fact it was one of the reasons why I bought it.

  • david3140·

    I've ditched my LG G watch for a Vivoactive.  I ordered directly through Garmin and received it quickly.  The item came 90% charged.  My initial impression was that the lcd display was lacking and tough to see in low lighting,  but I've quickly have gotten used to the back light option by pushing the left button making it bearable.   I fully charged it to 100%, have used it for two outdoor GPS runs and a couple of indoor runs. After one week,  I'm at 19% of battery life which is tons better than any Android Wear watches.  I like that the GPS runs  automatically sync to my Nike+ username with the partnership between the two Connect and Nike+.  Can't believe that the treadmill runs stored in Connect won't sync to Nike+ but it's a small compromise to bear as I can manually add that activity to Nike +.  Overall,  I find the Vivoactive much simpler and it fits what I want in a smartwatch, especially since I am thinking of switching from an Android phone back to an iPhone. 

    • Mdhowes·

      Really? The treadmill runs won't sync but the GPS runs will? I was going to test this out today. Thanks for the heads up.

  • Francois·

    Too bad there is no internal Heart rate sensor.  If you want to use it for monitoring daily activities and night sleep (including resting HR)  using a chest strap make no sense. Promising,  but I will wait for the next version,  hoping that this mistake will be corrected. 

    • kap1970·

      I have heard they drop a lot and are not very accuracte. Some said the internal heart rate only works if standing still...

  • artsilvaphoto·

    I think the reviewer is nit-picky and putting to much on the "look" of the watch. I have to disagree. This is an active sports watch first and fashion statement last... I think it looks fine and low profile. 

    As far as the brightness of the always on mode display, it does what it's suppose to do otherwise you're sacrificing better life. From video reviews it seams fine to me and no issues outdoors unless it's in direct glare of sunlight.

    As a cyclist, swimmer, trail runner, backpacker, paddler, I have been waiting for a device like this for a while now and Garmin seams to have a winner on its hands with the Vivoactive. The fact it has GPS, stored data and notifications is a real plus. A lack of a heart rate sensor doesn't bother me as I know it too would sacrifice battery power and size, besides if you want  accurate HR data you go with a chest strap monitor anyways.

    Garmin connect has customizable watch faces and apps and I hear they have opened it up to developers, so good things to come down the pipe for this device.

  • BadDobby·

    "So many devices have had such flakey Bluetooth syncing..."

    Many of the reviewers forget to test/ mention syncing with different platforms like Windows Phone/Android/iOS.  I bought my first wearable, a Fitbit Charge Hr.... it's a coin toss whether or not it'll decide to BT sync with my Android tablet or phone (GS5 - on the compatibility list) which is really frustrating... however tested with an iPad or iPhone, no issues syncing at all!

    Has anyone tested Vivoactive and Vivosmart against different platforms? If so what are your experiences BT syncing? 

    I honestly feel like chucking this Fitbit out as my first overall experience (software and hardware) into wearables has been quite underwhelming... well done Fatbits...

    • hlazar·

      Works well with my samsung galaxy note 3. I'm using the vivioactive version 2.9

    • rmaples·

      When I first got my Vivoactive I was using an LG Enact, which was a three year old phone and not on the official compatibility list.  It connected fine and would stayed connected as long as it stayed in range; however, anytime it got out of range of the phone when it got back in range I would have to re-connect it.  Also, the syncing was sometimes a little flaky, I don't think it ever had any issues uploading to the watch, but sometimes when downloading, such as new watch faces or apps, the watch would reset and I would have to download again.I have since changed to a Galaxy S6 and after the first connection it has automatically re-connected every time and the syncing has been flawless.

  • candyrich23·

    I just purchased the vivoactive and can't get it to work.  I synced it to my garmin connect app right off the bat.  Shows everything is up to date and paired but can't seem to get it off of the language screen.  No time or other apps will come up.  Texts and emails will show up though.  Tried connecting to garmin express on computer via USB but express would not recognize or sync my device.  Any suggestions appreciated if anyone else has had same problem.  

    • Irene·

      I think you need some usb drivers that you will find on the garmin site if you dig around. Not sure right now where they are. i had the same issue with garmin vivosmart it used to not connect (recognize) and sometimes it also restarted my computer. 

  • Pistol·

    E-mail notification is inconsistent.  May show on the VivoActive but no vibration alert.  Also, vibration intensity is an issue.  In an office environment, ok - but if running, driving, or other activity, many times cannot even feel the vibration.  Screen brightness is an issue in low light, however, as it is mainly designed for outdoors - that works fine.  

  • bagassas·

    Have had Garmins to track my running activities and training since 2012. First ever watch a Forerunner 310. which was excellent. Then I moved to Triathlon so the Forerunner 910 was my next move. Even better watch. Then in Nov 2014 bought the 920XT which was a very good evolution for Garmin. Unfortunately my watch was faulty since I bought it, had bluetooth connectivity issues, then it started unpairing with my HRM and lately with the Bike Speed/Cadence sensors. So I took it to back to Garmin for a replacement. However as I will be for at least two weeks without a training watch, I had to see what I could do and how I could be covered during this long time! So I bought a Vivoactive. WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This little thingie ROCKS!!! It has all my basic needs wrapped up in one little watch case! Yes screen is not as bright and with my short sight (I am 50 years old... ) I would have loved a larger and brighter screen. However this little gadget has all I need for my 3 sports. Run, Swim, Bike! I have tested it running it is as accurate as my 920XT, it has all needed runnign dynamics reported, like speed, cadence, foot stride, and it only lacks vertical oscillation. Swimming it is superb, as it is a Garmin Swim packed up in a smartwatch. Biking also was excellent, it reads all data from the ant+ Bike Speed Cadence sensor GSC 10 like a charm! 

    Connectivity yo my Zony Xperia Z3 is also non-problematic and fast. One of my best buys so far from Garmin


  • West·

    I think the reviewer must mean waterproof to 6 ATM, or you couldn't swim safely to 50m depth.

  • stevekat·

    I have just purchased the vivoactive, the only issue I'm having is its accuracy with steps and calories burnt, I don't have the HR strap does anyone know it's it is necessary to have it?? 

    Really disappointed love all the other features but let's me down where I needed it most!

  • konisko·

    I'm very disappointed with this device from a fitness standpoint.  For context, I've had the device from the first week it was out and installed all updates.  I'm a geek on these fitness devices and have had a number of them.  This devices resets and loses steps (the core of my activity logging).  It does ok on run tracking but is crummy in the water.  Maybe its because they tried to do this on a budget ... I am not impressed.  I usually buy a number of these trackers for friends and clients.  I will no subject anyone else to this debacle.  

  • GIR·

    All, I'm not a die-hard on any of the activities this watch touts, but I do want to invest in a multi-sport smart-watch that performs in all areas as advertised... 

    Definition of Perform - to carry out, accomplish, or fulfill (an action, task, or function)

    My primary activity will be the golf feature, but I do run, cycle, and soon add cross-fit and some of the reviews are promising but my concern is the buggy software. Can anyone share their experience w/ Garmin releasing fixes & updates in a timely fashion and would you wait for the next iteration of the Vivoactive?

  • doctork·

    has anyone used this for biking.what did you think of itdid it measure cadance, distance, elevations etc/

    • elwyn5150·

      @doctork : You clearly didn't read the comments above so I doubt you will read this one.

  • al_willis·

    I've been using this for about a week now. Only for running so far. as a first timer with these things I think it's really good. However, there is one major flaw for me. If you are tracking a run or bike ride it gives you all the data you would want for that individual activity but, as far as I can tell so far, you can't actually view the time whilst tracking an activity! Pretty much central to it being called a I watch I would have thought!!

    • nicko·

      You can tell the time whilst in a GPS activity. Hold your finger on the screen for about three seconds and it displays the time. Touch the back arrow bottom left and it then returns to the GPS activity. Also you can can configure GPS activity data screens and on of the options is time of day, if you want the time to be there at a glance.

  • Cgrover·

    I am thinking about getting this.  I mostly will use it for biking.  I am wondering if you need the speed sensor to track outdoor biking events.  It would seem you would only need that for inside, where GPS isn't on.  

  • aquariumman·

    5 ATM = 40 m not 50m. 

  • ulovit·

    I wanted to get a brown leather band for it but it seems it just comes in black and white. Any suggestions on fitting other Garmin bands to this watch?

  • raskall·

    I like the design of the watch. And in daylight and normal lighting indoors the screen is just fine. In fact, the brighter the light the better the screen is showing.

    The battery life is also fantastic. I haven't used gps this week, but the watch was charged to 100% monday morning. Now it's sunday morning and it has 62% battery left. This means it will have at least two weeks usage without gps. One hour of gps tracking reduces the battery with approximately 10% which is consistent with the 10 hour gps usage claim.

    Syncing works flawlessly and I love the Connect IQ store. 

    I have been using numerous watches the last years including pebble, pebble steel, misc Garmin Forerunners, Tomtom multisport. And the vivoactive leaves me missing absolutely nothing from all of my previous units. The only thing it will not replace is my Garmin Edge cycling computer. This is because of the screen size. I need way more than 3 data fields on the screen with big enough fonts to check in tenths of a second. 

    Since I already have an Edge computer I also have a HR strap. I've had the vivoactive for 3 weeks now and am looking forward to start running with the watch as soon as this week of being "on call" for work 24/7 is over. 

  • Skynetop·

    Who uses this for golf? How's the shot tracking software? 

    • j.stables·

      I believe it's just range finding, not shot tracking? 

  • John1024·

    Is the GPS a distance tracker only or can it find your car/camp back if you get lost? 

  • Erin·

    I am looking to get my husband a fitness tracker for Christmas. It is between this and the Fitbit Charge HR (I love mine and it has gotten better reviews than its more expensive counterpart, but I won't get into that).

    What I am interested in is the comfortability of the Garmin Vivoactive. My husband is a software developer, and spends the majority of his day with his wrists bent at a keyboard. Is the design too bulky and uncomfortable/debilitating? Would he have to take it off while typing for best mobility, etc?


    • mikemcclain·

      The size isn't too bad and won't dig into the wrist.  I also have the MotoACTV watch and love it much more.  Now, it's bulkier so I'm not sure about typing all day with it.  However, in addition to tracking all the activities, it also has a golf option that tells distance to hole, hazard, etc and tracks all of the shots so I can view it on google maps after a round and know exactly where I hit the ball.  It also tracks number of shots and putts and GIR.  If he's a golfer, I would go with the MotoACTV.  One more thing, it stores all of my iTunes music and has a radio built in.  Can connect via Bluetooth headphones or plug in.  Just another option.

  • DrMFerrari·

    Avoid this watch if you want to use it for anything other then the odd summer run. The touch screen cannot be locked, resulting in runs pausing/deleting and settings (language being a total pain) changing mid workout due to rain hitting the screen, clothes rubbing against it etc.. The swimming app is also absolutely useless for this reason. 

  • Stevo·

    For me the watch is unusable.  Cannot see the face and no way to adjust the contrast.  Spent 20 frustrating minutes and felt like tossing into the trash.

  • dmacker·

    Can't seem to get a straight answer to the following:  if I cycling with the Vivoactive, am I able to look at the watch and see my speed without any other sensors etc. or do I have to wait until I open up the app to see all of the data.

  • dmacker·

    When I cycle with the Vivoactive on, do I get real time speed (km/h) on the watch without any other sensors or do I need to wait until after the ride and look at the data.

    • glenno·

      Yes you can see your real time speed. You can scroll through 3 data screens, each screen showing 3 fields, and they can be configured to include things like speed, HR, max HR, distance, time of day, cadence, etc (depending on what sensors you have).

  • Dpo927·

    I'm interested in knowing if anyone has used the vivofit in spin class. Was it accurate?

  • broughams·

    Stay away from this product.

    Band is not very comfortable and unpleasant in the hot weather .

    Toy quality , touched on the pool wall and the screen cracked, rang Garmin, no repairs and don't care happy to charge you for a new one.

    Sync issues all the time and the "connect" app is a pain to navigate.

    If you are after an expensive toy then maybe this is for you, with the fragile nature and complete lack of support from Garmin, look elsewhere.

  • Kurt·

    can u use a hr strap with this model or do you have to buy the vivoactive w/ hr monitor?

  • Iwasmo·

    I am considering the vivoactive. However, I work in a rather large retail store. I push and pull carts (some heavier than others) move pallets of product and walk behind some heavy equipment. Will the vivoactive still track steps through all of that? I currently use a fitbit, but I have to wear it on my ankle as it does not catch all my steps at work. I just don't want to buy it to find out it isnt any better than fitbit. 

  • fb_121209·

    Garmin vivoactive smartwatch is really a iconic feature in the technological world. The product quality is good and its technical side is really great. The GPH system is outstanding. It can calculate running, cycling, walking and swimming accurately and track it all correctly. the most amazing part is its design. It is worthy of buying. 

  • VinceS·

    It has taken me a while to figure out this watch as i am not a techie but now that I have I believe it has many impressive features. I've used it for cycling/spinning, running and swimming. It gives me what is most important to me which is an accurate heart rate. I'm also looking forward to using it for golf. What i don't like about the watch is that it is "light" when it comes to calorie burn. i find it gives me at least 20% less calorie burn than my previous Garmin.I'm not sure if i programmed something improperly but I can't figure it out. If anyone has any ideas let me know please. I also do not like the fact that it deosn't tell e how much time I've spend in my heart rate zones, only max and avergage. Again I'm not sure if I'm missing something. Generally I do not find the App very user friendly.

  • daz9360·

    excellent, however the issue is so frustrating on the notifications, works fine with all apart from whatsapp. then I just get 1 line of the message, does anyone know if this can be resolved in setting?

  • Dolshaw·

    if you wanted to use the watch kayaking to track distance. Could you use the swim mode. I like the idea of being waterproof to use for waters ports

    • actionman·

      I recommend using running or biking... the swim track feature doesnt have gps..

  • Gywn·

    I just purchased this watch and wanted to know if it automatically tracks your steps all day or do you have to leave the walking app on all day? 

  • BorisMellor·

    Do you have to measure and enter your stride length for steps walked, or odes it estimate from the GPS

  • Tad·

    Got one as a gift, having used an older style chest strap heart rate monitor and wrist device successfully for years. But it wasn't waterproof, hence the upgrade. 3 hours after opening the box, it went back in it! I don't want to have to carry and / or rely on a smart phone, to know what my exercise calorie burn is; the device should do that, based on gender, age in years and weight. But the Garmin comes with the usual crap of downloading apps so that you can be sent recipes, adverts, and stupid graphs that only an Olympic athlete could ever be interested in. And why oh why does it require your full birthday details? Really? And who sleeps with their wristwatch on anyway? Military perhaps? You know if you have had a crap sleep without a watch telling you (unreliably) and if you are that paranoic about it, go and see a doctor; they have proper analytical measurement capabilities called sleep labs.

    • Michandney·

      What are you talking about?

      1. You can see calorie burn on the device its self, you don't need your smart phone for that, so that's a bit silly.

      2. No idea why it requires full birthday details, however it's also partly used for your calorie burn when using your age.

      3. I sleep with my 'wrist watch' on every night. How else am I supposed to know my calorie burn in the morning, as I sleep differently every night, and I'm assuming others do too. I know some don't sleep with it on, but most do. I don't use the sleep function so that's a stupid statement to make.

  • TopazJo·

    how do you track distance when on the treadmill?  Do you need a footpod as it doesn't track distance run or on an exercise bike

  • mpagan88·

    I love my Vivoactive watch, I just upgrade from the vivo smart and theirs nothing better than being able to challenge yourself daily to do more and better then the day before. It also allow me to connect the Garmin app to My Fitness Pal giving me more control of my activities and how my intake can affect my daily goals. Cost efficient, does the same as other activity tracker and water proof being a major plus! 

  • Martyzwife·

    I have been trying to decide which watch is better. The Vivoactive or the Vivoactive HR? I am curious about a few things. 

    1) indoor runs on a treadmill do both of these watches track distance? 

    2) The rowing on the Vivoactive HR it tracks strokes for indoor rowing? It doesn't need to be synced to a machine to do this? Can you get an app for the Vivoactive to do the same thing and track the same information?

    3) Do either of these watches have a peeping sound for an alarm that can be set with the vibration? Or is it strictly vibration? 

    I have been looking at review after review but do not see the answers to these questions.

    Would love some input


    • j.stables·

      1) they try to yes, not 100% accurate
      2) I think the rowing metrics has strokes per min, no machine sync
      3) Not sure, sorry.

      If you want my input, Vivoactive HR is a lot better than the predecessor

  • crazyet·

    This is an awesome watch!!! Love it!! It's my first Garmin, and GPS enabled watch.. The tracking features are very good! And you can download more for gym tracking.. tons of watch faces which is really cool. the design and looks don't bother me... I like that i can connect with people easily, and also that i can join groups.. I would really like it if garmin had taunt's cheers, and notes about peoples daily/weekly steps!! Anyways very happy, if you want a little more get the hr edition.. Good jod garmin

  • Samkh·

    Half star is too much for this product. It worth about $25 not more than that. Honestly Striiv is much much better. 

  • ChrisA·

    I had a vivofit through it away as it would not work with my phone all of a sudden !!!   

    I now have a vivoactive thanks to coles rewards and I may not be super high tech or stylish but I have some medical issues and at this stage I am rapt with it , it is comfortable --- stylish enough for me and above all seems to be accurate and versatile !!!

                                                                                                         Chris. A   

  • Dlinn·

    I bought a viva active this week,the problem I have is changing it from one activity to another,pushed right hand button but rarely works.It has excellent features but that is a problem.