clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Garmin's elegant new Vivofit looks like it will grant me entry into Club Fit

If I had to choose between Garmin's pair of new fitness trackers — the Vivofit 3 and the Vivoactive HR — I'd definitely go for the former. Not just because I'm a persistent slouch, and the heart-rate tracking features on the Vivoactive HR would be wasted on me, but because the Vivofit 3 is one of the nicest looking activity trackers I've seen. Yes, you can still tell what it is, and yes, tugging its somewhat tight one-size-fits-all form onto my wrist was a minor struggle, but once it was on, it looked oddly elegant. Like a wrist-band that would grant me entry to a particularly upmarket spa.

Of course, the exclusive club that fitness trackers like the Vivofit are supposed to give you entry to is that of the Extremely Healthy. To that end, the $99 Vivofit 3 will keep tabs on your daily movement and sleep, and automatically detect certain activities — for example, running, biking, or elliptical training. It has a battery life of a year and is water-resistant up to 50 meters (the auto-detect feature works on swimming too). The scalloped design I tried on is only one of a number of Garmin's "Style" looks (others have quilted or braided bands), and the company has also roped in designer Jonathan Adler to create his own versions of the Vivofit 3.

Other Vivofit 3 bands look braided and quilted

And for those people who want a bit more tracking out of their fitness tracker, there's the $249 Vivoactive HR. The HR, in this case, stands for heart rate, with an optical heart rate sensor on the underside of the device. It also has an increased GPS battery life (up to 13 hours), the same auto-detect function as the Vivofit for certain activities (though more are covered), elevation sensors, and the ability to receive notifications from your phone. It also looks a lot like a Fitbit Surge, although with a slightly longer face and a busier design. It's a lot more utilitarian than the Vivofit, but then, it is a lot more utilitarian, and it is at least comfortable and relatively discrete — slim enough to fit under the end of a jumper or suit jacket without bulging in an unsightly way. It's no Vivofit when it comes to looks, but at least it has the good sense to be small enough to hide.

Apple

Apple employees will return to the office in September under hybrid model

Microsoft

Windows 10 and Chrome are about to make switching default browsers even less painful

Gaming

Def Con hacker shows John Deere’s tractors can run Doom

View all stories in Tech