Garmin Vivofit With Heart Rate Monitor Review

Garmin Vivofit With Heart Rate Monitor Review

The Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band will make sure that the user makes every single step count. This is one fitness band that offers the user a daily goal that is customized, tracks the progress as well as reminds the user that it is time to move the body.

Vívofit displays the necessary information like steps, calories, time, distance and goal countdown. It also observes the sleep statistics of the user for a review later.

The device can be paired with a heart rate monitor to track the heart rate data while performing exercises or fitness activities. It comes with wireless sync to the Garmin Connect – it is a free online community wherein the user can join different fitness challenges as well as plan, save, and share their progress.

It falls in the price range $130-$R170 and what we aim at is to find out if this fitness band matches the Fit Bit bands or the Nike FuelBand. Does this fitness band match the rival products?

Read through our Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band Review 2019 to know if it is worth the money!

Best Suited to Whom?

This Heart rate monitor from Gramin can sense the position of an individual – whether he/she has been stationary for long and starts its own countdown before setting off an alarm that notifies the person of him/her being in a stationary position for a long time.

The best part regarding this fitness band is that it enables the person to create an exercise regimen within their regular schedule without the need to think about the regimen.

This is due to the fact that your Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band takes responsibility for the thinking and ensures the user remains active all the time. You can have a look at our list of best fitness bands 2019 for information on other brands.

Garmin Vivofit With Heart Rate Monitor Assembly, Design and Build Quality


It is very simple and easy to set up your Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band via Connect. You will require an account, in case you do not own one. Through this account, you will be required to answer some standard questions regarding your height, weight, age, and the like.

After this, you can pair the band with your smartphone via Bluetooth or by using the ANT+ USB dongle that is provided by the company and your laptop/PC. The same process applies even for syncing and you just have to press and hold the button on your band till the word “sync” surfaces.

In case you are in the range zone of your smartphone or laptop, then the Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band will directly upload the latest activity. The dashboard displays the latest data from every single main category inclusive of Steps, Connections, Sleep, and Activities.

You also have an option to add extra cards to your dashboard to brag about your badges (achievements) and display your reports.

Design and Build Quality

The Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band has a very rubbery and flexible band that contains the tracking module. This, however, looks very cheap and resembles the Livestrong wristbands, but the Vivofit has a wider body.

Aesthetically, the Vivofit is quite similar to the Fitbit Flex, wherein it has a clasp that ensures that this heart rate monitor is secure on your wrist.

The band from Vivofit weighs about 25.5gm thereby making this device a very light one just like the Jawbone UP24 (23g) as well as the Nike Fuelband SE (27g). The box comes with band sizes – small (120-175mm) as well as large (152-210mm) and the user can swap these with colored straps that come at an additional cost.

The main advantage of this band over its rivals is that the user need not remove the band even when in the shower or when going for a swim. The Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band is water-resistant up to about 50m. However, the band does not come with any feature that is dedicated to swimming.

The Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band has a very simple LCD that is 25.5mm wide and 10 mm high in contrast to the AMOLED touchscreen found in the Gear Fit. However, this display is perfect to check your statistics.

However, the Vivofit does not have a backlit display which improves the life of its battery, however, it cannot be used for a late evening run and can be quite tough to find in the dark.

You will find a single button located next to the display and you can use this to check the time, the steps completed, distance, steps left for you to reach your goal, the total distance, calories burned, etc. If you hold down this button, you can put the device in either pairing, sleep or sync mode.

You can also connect it to an ANT+heart rate monitor chest strap that gives the user an extra display to track the heart rate and observe heart rate zones.

The Vivofit can be purchased with the ANT Plus heart rate monitor for a hiked up price. It is not compatible with Bluetooth Smart monitors. However, it does not have any physical ports like a USB port.

It makes use of removable batteries for power. It uses wireless radios for connectivity (ANT+ and Bluetooth 4.0) for connectivity. This means the device cannot be charged. According to Garmin, it will last a year before the batteries have to be changed. Vivofit also does not come with GPS.

However, these minor drawbacks only help improve the battery life of the band. It targets the lifestyle fitness market instead of focusing on those who have very demanding training requirements.

Garmin Vivofit With Heart Rate Monitor Features

1. Heart rate zone alarm – It can be paired with a heart rate chest strap while performing fitness activities. The bundle package includes the chest strap as well.

2. Calories It understands the level of activity of a user, based on which personalized goals are assigned every single morning. It also records the calories burned by the user all through the day inclusive of the base metabolic rate.

3. Life – The Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band tracks the progress of the user 24/7. As per the brand, the band can last you a year easily, before a change of batteries. It also helps in monitoring the period of rest; all you need to do is select the sleep mode before you hit the bed.

4. Sleep tracking – The band has a feature of sleep tracking that is connected to Garmin Connect. It examines the sleep activity of the user as well. At Garmin Connect, the user can check their total hours of sleep along with the periods of movement as well as restful sleep.

5. Activity tracker – The Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band comes with an activity tracker that shows the user’s steps/time/goal every single minute, and there is very limited user interaction required.
It also ensures it reminds the user to be active and not spend a lot of time seated in a specific place for long hours.

6. Computer/app link – It can be synced with other smartphones, both Android as well as iOS using Bluetooth 4.0 (iPhone 4S and the latest models, the third-gen iPad as well as recent models, the iPad Mini, or the 5th Gen iPod Touch; and Android 4.3 phones that are Bluetooth Smart-ready) through the Garmin Connect app, or can be synced using a wireless USB dongle to the Mac or PC.

This feature is similar to that of the Nike Fuelband and the Jawbone Up.

7. Monitor The best fitness band from Garmin has an LCD display that comes with a black background and has huge grey numbers. The numbers are very easy to read, however, the display is horizontal that might require you to twist the wrist. A drawback is that it is not backlit.

8. Speed and distance -The tracker motivates the user to stay active all through the day as it displays a red move bar in case the user is inactive for one hour.

There are extra segments that light up every 15 minutes in case of inactivity. To reset it, the user will have to walk around for a few minutes.

9. Digital interface –There is one button on the Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band that controls everything. This button does a variety of things depending on how many seconds it is held down for. This can get confusing and difficult to remember.

The button has to be clicked to check the time, steps, or different modes. One needs to press and hold the button to sync the device, track sleep activity, or pair it with the phone.

10. Sport-specific features – This heart rate monitor is good for swimmers as it  comes with a stroke recognition feature.

Garmin Vivofit With Heart Rate Monitor Alternatives

The Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band has a lot of rivals. For instance, you can check out Nike’s FuelBand priced at $149, Jawbone’s Up 24 priced at $150 as well as the Fitbit. All these three devices have their advantages. The software of the Jawbone is extensive and can be used easily.

The Nike FuelBand comes with some amazing social features (although it is iOS only). The Fitbit Force is a complete tracker available in the market, however, this was recalled as it caused irritation on the skin of a user. There are many more models that are worthy of consideration.

For instance, the Polar Loop priced at $110 was launched earlier. It is quite similar to the Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band and comes at a lower price. In case you need something that has a mild aesthetic, you can check out the Misfit Shine that is priced at $120.

Though it has a very simple design, it is quite a versatile device in comparison to its rivals, as this device need not be worn only on the wrist.

Garmin Vivofit With Heart Rate Monitor Pros & Cons


  • The band is water-resistant up to 50m
  • The battery of this device lasts for more than a year
  • It has an always-on display screen
  • It can be paired with smartphones/tablets (iOS or Android)
  • It can be paired with a wireless heart-rate monitor chest strap
  • The device is very comfortable
  • It is an accurate device that provides important statistics
  • It also monitors sleep activity
  • It also reminds the user of inactivity for an hour
  • The bundle includes a heart rate monitor


  • It has no vibration for movement reminders
  • The battery has to be replaced after a year
  • The LCD is not backlit
  • It is not compatible with Bluetooth smart monitors
  • The user has to compulsorily make use of the Garmin Connect App
  • It cannot be charged
  • It does not have GPS


The best part about the Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band is that the exercise schedule is given a unique approach, as these days, it is quite tough for people to incorporate exercise into their busy work life. If a person makes use of any of these devices, they do not have to worry about their exercises.

The monitor enables them to merge their workout routines easily into their lifestyle. The device is said to last for a year, after which the battery needs to be replaced manually. Another important feature is that it is water-resistant and can be worn all the time, which makes this heart rate monitor a good choice for swimmers.

The strap of this device is serviceable, however, it isn’t very comfortable and sleek. Also, the device does not have a backlight and cannot be used in low-light visibility. There are many devices that fall in our category of best fitness bands under $500, and though this could fall in that category, we expected a lot more features from a brand like Garmin.

The device is priced at $130 and is not very expensive. It is good for those who want an aesthetic device and who are not very demanding on the features. If you are on the lookout for a durable fitness band with basic features, then the Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band is a great option.

FAQs of Garmin Vivofit With Heart Rate Monitor

Q1: Does the Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band have a small as well as a large-sized band?
A1: Yes. Both sizes of bands are included.

Q2: Does the user have to pay a monthly fee to use Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band?
A2: Once the user buys the device, they can start using it. The only cost incurred is the purchase price. No other monthly fees are to be paid.

Q3: Is the Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band a watch?
A3: The Garmin Vívofit Fitness Band comes with a clock to check the time and it can be used for this purpose. However, the user might find it tough to view it at night or in low light.