While Garmin’s latest hybrid smartwatch doesn’t reinvent the wheel, it is adding a long-overdue feature: wireless charging. The $269.99 Vivomove Trend will be the first of any Garmin device to add Qi compatibility.
Wireless charging isn’t new to smartwatches. In fact, most modern smartwatches come with some kind of wireless charging magnetic puck. The catch is these chargers tend to be proprietary, and even if you have a Qi charger, it likely won’t work with your smartwatch. Or, at least, not reliably. Conversely, Garmin says you should be able to plop the Trend onto any existing Qi-certified charger you may already have. This is neat, as losing smartwatch chargers is more annoying than your typical gadget. Not only is there a good chance your dozens of USB, micro USB, and USB-C cables won’t be compatible, but it often costs a pretty penny to buy a replacement from the manufacturer, and third-party dupes may not always work.
That said, there’s a catch here, too. The Trend won’t come with a Qi charger in the box. You’ll have to buy that on your own if you don’t already have one. (You do get a wired charger included with the Trend, and that, too, has been upgraded to USB-C.) Garmin also notes in its press release that the Trend may not work with upright Qi charging stands or those built into vehicles.
Of course, wireless charging isn’t the only new feature coming to the Trend. The watch is meant to replace the Vivomove 3 in Garmin’s hybrid lineup and adds Garmin Pay, its sleep score feature, and a barometric altimeter. Otherwise, it has the same signature hidden display as Garmin’s other Vivomove watches — though the Trend’s is a monochrome LCD like the entry-level Sport compared to the color OLED displays used in the Style and Luxe.
As a lifestyle watch, the Trend opts for connected GPS over its own built-in GPS sensor and has an estimated battery life of five days — which is “short” for a Garmin. It also doesn’t go too deep on the hard-core training features you’ll find on the company’s more rugged watches. Meanwhile, for health tracking, it’ll feature menstrual cycle tracking, blood oxygen monitoring, in-depth sleep tracking, stress tracking, abnormal high-and-low heart rate alerts, fitness age, and Body Battery — Garmin’s proprietary metric for visualizing how well you’ve recovered from stress and activity.
It’ll be interesting to see how the Trend differentiates itself from the similarly priced Vivomove Style. It seems to boil down to what you’d prefer: the Style’s color OLED display and all-metal body or the Trend’s wireless charging. I’ve been playing around with the Trend for a few days, and it still looks quite chic on the wrist even without the metal body. I’ll have to try out Qi charging before passing a final verdict, but so far, the Trend is in line with what you’d expect from Garmin’s hybrid line.
The Garmin Vivomove Trend is available starting today in four colors. The slate/black and silver/mist gray colorways will retail for $269.99, while the peach gold/ivory and cream gold/French gray versions will cost $299.99.