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Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band Review

The Good: One year battery life, water resistant, supports heart rate monitoring, easy to clean, always-on LCD display. 

The Bad: Basic features, lack of vibrating system to attract your attention to notifications. 

The Verdict: Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band is a very rudimentary fitness tracker. It's geared for performance over everything else, and as such does a great job. If you can go without more advanced features, Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band is a great choice for you. 

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Overview

Although it performs most of the same tasks as the majority of fitness trackers, Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band is different. The way this device works, and the features it offers, make it one of the most practical fitness trackers on the market. Engineers from Garmin obviously prioritized function over form by introducing some rather unorthodox solutions in this model. 

Design

Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band comes in form of a stiff rubberized band that houses the device itself. The device is removable, allowing you to properly clean the wrist band. Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band sports an LCD display with a black background, that is always on. You might think that this reflects poorly on the battery life, but we'll touch upon that later. The way the display is designed makes it very easy to read, especially thanks to large gray characters Garmin chose for this purpose. One button controls every feature of Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band. To cycle different modes, you just have to press the button. Holding the button pressed for a certain amount of time control syncing, and several other tasks. 

Features

When it comes to features, Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band offers the basics. It tracks and records your steps, calories burned, distance traveled, and lets you know how far you are from reaching your daily goal at any given moment. It can also track your heart rate, but in order to have this feature you have to buy a chest strap that is sold separately. There is a red bar on the top of the screen that indicates your inactivity. It appears after you've been stationary for more than an hour, and increases in length for every 15 additional minutes you remain inactive. 

Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band can track your sleep and sleep quality, but it doesn't feature a silent alarm like many other fitness trackers do. Unfortunately, it doesn't vibrate even when it's supposed to notify you that you have reached your daily goal, or when the red bar that indicates inactivity appears. This can make tracking your progress hard. One aspect in which Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band excels at is its battery life. We already mentioned that the LCD screen never shuts off, but even so the battery life is estimated to be about a year. There is no way to charge the Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band, and once your battery runs out, you have to replace it. This kind battery performance is rare even with more expensive fitness trackers. Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band is waterproof, and can be worn while showering. 

The app that comes with the device is very simple and sports a clean design. It is as rudimentary as the device itself, while it allows you to track your stats, share your results, and even unlock achievements.

Specifications: 

  • Activity tracker
  • One year battery life
  • 1 year limited warranty
  • Removable wrist band
  • Always-on LCD display

Conclusion

Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band is a definition of function over form in the fitness tracker industry. It comes with limited features, but offers benefits that are not easily dismissed. The super long battery life makes it almost unique on the market, and is very practical compared to the standard way fitness tracker batteries operate. It is comfortable to wear, while retaining a low profile. Definitely one of the most interesting, performance oriented fitness trackers on the market. 

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