Hot news! Garmin vivosmart 3 about to be released this April. Again, Garmin seems to avoid using the even number when naming their wearables lol. There was no Garmin Fenix 4. And this time, you would never find Garmin vivosmart 2.

garmin vivosmart 3 review design screen
Hence, to know how Garmin vivosmart 3 have been enhanced, I will compare it with the older versions – Garmin vivosmart HR and Garmin vivosmart HR+.

Garmin vivosmart 3 is launched right after their rival Fitbit brought out the Alta HR. If you’re looking for a smart fitness tracker that has heart rate monitor, you may want to know the pros and cons of Garmin vivosmart 3 against Fitbit Alta HR and Fitbit Charge 2. They are in the same price range. Will Garmin vivosmart 3 be your companion this 2017? Let me help you find out the answer.

Garmin vivosmart 3 Release Date

On Apr 12th 2017, Garmin officially announced Garmin Vivosmart 3. Its predecessors – Garmin vivosmart HR and HR+ were put on the market on Oct 2015 and May 2016 accordingly.
The fitness tracker is said to be available in 5-8 coming weeks. You can preorder it now on Amazon.

Garmin vivosmart 3 Price

Surprisingly, Garmin prices the vivosmart 3 at $139.99 even lower than the vivosmart HR ($149.99) and vivosmart HR+ ($179.99). Maybe the reason is because they want to beat Fitbit Alta HR ($149) and Fitbit Charge 2 ($149).
I think this is a reasonable price for such a nice smart activity tracker.

Review Garmin vivosmart 3 Design

If you love to wear a slender fitness tracker, you will be happy to hear that Garmin vivosmart 3 is 18.5mm in width. It’s slimmer than Garmin vivosmart HR which is 21mm. It’s just 3.5mm wider than Fitbit Alta HR – the slimmest tracker with heart rate sensor.

The second biggest difference is that the screen of Garmin vivosmart 3 is OLED. It’s no longer sunlight-visible, transflective memory in pixel (MIP) like the HR and HR+.

The “always on” screen of vivosmart HR turned out to be a shortcoming, therefore Garmin made the new vivosmart 3 hidden display only activated via gestures.

Garmin vivosmart 3 design review

The tracker comes into 2 colors: black and purple. There’s no midnight blue option like in the Garmin vivosmart HR.

The strap is silicone and buckle-style like the older versions. It’s not interchangeable like the Alta HR and Fitbit Charge 2.

Overall, Garmin vivosmart 3 catches up with the trend: slimmer, hidden display and OLED screen. It’s simple and bold, a perfect buddy for male.

Review Garmin vivosmart 3 Features

Review Garmin vivosmart 3 Features – Pros

Stress tracking
This is the incredible feature of Garmin vivosmart 3. This feature is not yet available even in the high-end smart watch Garmin Fenix 5.

Not just score your stress level like Garmin Fenix 5, the new wellness monitoring tools of Garmin vivosmart 3 calculate and display stress level as a wedge graph. When the level starts to move up, it indicates that your stress is getting higher. The tool help you recognize what causes stress level high so you can lower it.

garmin vivosmart 3 stress monitoring review
It also provides relaxation-based breathing timer, so you can have 1-5 minutes guided breathing exercise. This useful function can be found in Fitbit Charge 2, but not in Fitbit Alta HR.

With stress tracking, Garmin vivosmart 3 not only help you keep fit but improve your emotional wellbeing.

VO2 max and Fitness age
VO2 max (your ability to process oxygen and deliver it to your muscles) used to be available in high end smart watch only. Last year, Fitbit integrated VO2 max measurement into Fitbit Charge 2 and now Garmin make it accessible in Garmin vivosmart 3. Besides giving you your VO2 max, Garmin vivosmart 3 uses that data to calculate fitness age, a relatable metric that puts a user’s fitness level in terms of an age. Increasing your VO2 max and reduce your fitness age will be a clear goal for you to exercise.

garmin vivosmart 3 vo2 max review
Activity tracking
Garmin vivosmart 3 has all basic functions such as tracking steps, heart rate, floors climbed, calories, distance and sleep monitoring.

Moreover, it inherits the best features of Garmin vivosmart HR: Intensity Minutes which measures activity intensity against goals recommended by leading health organizations and Move IQ which automatically recognizes and records your activities.

Garmin vivosmart 3 review pros and cons
Waterproof
Garmin doesn’t claim an exact water rating like they did with the vivosmart HR. However, they guarantee that you can take the tracker for swimming and showering at ease.

If water resistance really matters to you, Garmin vivosmart 3 might be a better choice than Fitbit Alta Hr and Fitbit Charge 2 as those Fitbits are not safe for swimming or showering.

Clock and phone features
You can control music, find your misplaced phone, find your watch with Garmin vivosmart 3. It has full clock features such as timer and stopwatch, which are missed in the Fitbit Alta HR.

Review Garmin vivosmart 3 Features – Cons

Garmin vivosmart 3 Battery life
It lasts up to 5 days, same as the vivosmart HR and Fitbit Charge 2. Fitbit Alta HR has a longer battery life of 7 days.

No GPS
It would be great to have this feature in Garmin vivosmart 3. The device is not integrated GPS and can’t piggy back on a phone’s GPS either.
If you love to have a GPS integrated fitness tracker, consider Garmin vivosmart HR+.

Garmin vivosmart 3 Conclusion

Design is not the selling point of Garmin vivosmart 3. Though it is more compact than its previous versions, it can’t be compared with Fitbit Alta HR and Charge 2 in terms of design. It has less color options and the band is not interchangeable.

Nevertheless, it has more appealing functions such as stress tracking and fitness age. So if you prefer functions to design, go for Garmin vivosmart 3.