Garmin Vivoactive - Smartwatch GPS


Cambiar idioma

Did you feel like reading the whole test? It's already completed, so you can click here to access itThis thread is the presentation of the watch, the most complete and relevant information is the one you will find in the test.

I've already started the test, so the first thing I'll do is leave you with the video of the unpacking and the first impressions of the watch.

If you want to have all the details, I leave you the text of the presentation below.


Today Garmin presented new products at the Las Vegas CES. Not only did they surprise us with the presentation of the new Fenix 3It has also introduced other products, such as Garmin Vivoactive, a Smartwatch with integrated GPS that is not intended to replace any other product of the brand, but is a new product within the Vivo range.

This new Garmin device is a smart clock, but it has not joined the growing wave of devices with Android Wear. Instead, it relies on the Connect IQ platform, which Garmin launched with the 920xt. Through Connect IQ it will be possible to add data fields and widgets, or customizations to the clock screen. And from today onwards, Connect IQ takes shape definitively, as these applications and clock screens are now availableIn other words, any user or company can create their own applications, either to add to the clock or to support any type of new device (as long as it has ANT+ connectivity)

Garmin Vivoactive 06

As for the Vivoactive, it is not comparable to any clock we know today, as it is an amalgamation of many other devices in one. It is a GPS clock designed for runners or cyclists, an activity monitor that in addition to counting the steps also serve in swimming, and also has smart watch functionality.

It's a very thin watch, only 8mm and 38g in weight. It's controlled by a touch screen, in colour and with a resolution of 205×148 pixels. As for autonomy, you shouldn't worry, because Garmin declares that it's capable of reaching 10 hours of use in activity with GPS recording, and up to 3 weeks if you don't use satellite localisation.

When thinking about this Garmin Vivoactive, we must change our initial concept to what is a training clock. Think of it as a computer, a hardware platform (screen, GPS, processor, etc.) where we will install different programs, thanks to which we will have the full functionality of training clock. As standard the clock incorporates three applications: cycling, running and swimming (of course, it is water resistant to 50m), which are what we previously had as activity profiles, in which you can connect different sensors, pulse or cadence for example. These sensors will be connected through ANT +.


Garmin Vivoactive 03

Thanks to Connect IQ you can add any other sport for which an application is developed that can benefit from the use of GPS, sensors or accelerometer. So the possibilities are practically endless. For example, the Golf application, where you can download different golf course layouts and can indicate distances to the green or carry your score card.

Garmin Vivoactive 04

In the activity monitor section, it follows the same pattern as the rest of the Vívo range. It is capable of counting steps and monitoring your sleeping hours, as well as estimating distances and calorie consumption. This data can be synchronised with your mobile phone and, from there, synchronised to Garmin Connect to obtain all day's data together, both the activity you did and the sports you played, and how you slept during the night. Everything is quantified.

Garmin Vivoactive 02

Finally, I have to remember that the Garmin Vivoactive is still a smart watch, so it will be able to perform typical smart watch functions, such as receiving application notifications from your mobile phone. You will not need to install any specific application and it is compatible with both Android and iOS. But remember that you will need your phone to have Bluetooth Smart.

Garmin Vivoactive 05

Other Garmin Vivoactive partners

Taking advantage of the Las Vegas CES, Garmin introduced us to other products. The Garmin Fenix 3which is probably what 920xt buyers were hoping for. And the new Garmin EpixThe Fenix range is the ultimate adventure GPS, which, in addition to incorporating all the navigation options of the Fenix range, allows you to install maps.

Garmin Vivoactive, Availability and Pricing

The Garmin Vivoactive is available in two colours, white or black. The base price of the watch will be £249, rising to £299 if you want it in a kit with a pulse sensor. Garmin estimates that it will be available in the first quarter of 2015, so if you are interested you can get it in March or April, but if you want to receive it as soon as possible, you can book it NOW and receive it as soon as it is available. And with the AF-VOUCHCLOUD-AF code when you make your purchase, you will get a 10% discount and totally free shipping.

Eduardo Mateos

I've been surrounded by electronic devices of all kinds for more than 25 years. Using them, testing them, taking them apart and dissecting them. Long distance triathlete: I swim, run and cycle for a long time. Maybe too much.

Related posts


  1. Hi, first of all congratulations for the blog, the analyses are simply GREAT.

    About the garmin VivoActive you indicate that it is not a replacement for any other watch of the brand. A few days ago I was about to acquire a 310xt and when I saw the Vivoactivo I decided to wait. I think that the vivoactive could be a good replacement for the 310xt since it seems that it will have all the same features, which will serve as a triathlon watch and also offers smartwatch functionalities.

    However, due to the lack of patience I have, the analysis of the M400 on your blog and the budget available to spend on a watch, I have ended up buying a Polar M400 that will soon be on my wrist.

    A salute.

    1. The Vivoactive cannot replace the 310xt because, although it has all three sports, it has no triathlon function where you can chain the three sports with transition times.

      Congratulations on your purchase, I'm sure you'll enjoy it, and come many updates along the way

    2. Where can you buy it? I'm on the Garmin website and they won't let me buy it!
      Any ideas? Lack of stock?
      Thank you!

      1. Claudio, at the moment it has only been presented, but it has not yet reached the market. We will be able to buy it in the middle of April or May.

  2. Hello again!
    I'm hearing about it from the official Garmin twitter that will be available in the next few weeks.
    What do you think, is it better the Fenix 2 or the VivoActive? On one hand I can wait for the VivoActive or buy the Fenix 2 already.


    1. Hello Claudio

      The Fenix 2 is a mainly mountain-oriented watch with very specific GPS functions and a long battery life (here's all the information)

      On the other hand the Vivoactive is a smart clock with application support and designed to run on asphalt, and with less autonomy.

  3. Good morning! A great analysis, I'm hesitating between the vivoactive and the polar v800 that has dropped in price. I practice all 3 disciplines, in an amateur way I don't compete or anything, what I see is that the vivoactive can be more useful for daily life and apart from the sport but I see that the data it offers a priori are very basic, now I don't know if with the IQ can leave applications that improve in the sporting aspect. On the other hand the polar also offers some measures for daily life and I see that right now the functions for training are much more complete, although maybe it's a little big but it's never too much. What do you recommend? Maybe the sports issues of the garmin will improve or is the polar better?

    1. Hello, Alejandro.

      I have not yet received the Vivoactive to test it, and since it is a brand new device that does not replace any other model within the brand I do not want to venture a definitive assessment.

      In principle, the most important difference to the V800 is that in the Polar you can do multisport activities (triathlon, duathlon, etc.) while in the Vivoactive you can't. Since you don't compete, it's not important to you.

      The second difference comes in terms of autonomy, which in the case of the V800 will be greater.

      In favour of the Polar, the possibility to swim and receive heart rate data, which is not possible on the Vivoactive.

      The V800 will also receive notifications from the phone in a future update.

      As far as performance goes, they're very even. Either one will more than cover your sporting needs.

      If you are in a hurry, you can buy the V800 now, the Vivoactive is not yet on the market. If you are not in a hurry, you can wait for the test and then decide.

  4. Thank you Eduardo! I suppose I will wait a bit and if I don't buy the Polar, which in the link you put from Germany is at 310 euros and according to what you tell me is better for training and the same for the daily functions, besides I don't think you will be able to measure pulses in swimming with the garmin.
    A salute.

    1. The only way to measure heart rates with Garmin would be to make a Connect IQ application that enabled it, and to use a Mio Link bracelet next to the watch.

  5. First of all, I want to tell you that the blog is great. You helped me a lot to decide for this device. The only thing I wanted to know is if they have put an app in iqconnect for when you work out at the gym, because, although I have downloaded some, they don't work as I expected.

    1. I know that there are Connect IQ apps designed for fitness and repetition (in bodybuilding), but I haven't tried them - you can see them in the app store.

  6. hola buenas noches, les escribo desde Mexico, yo compre el vivoactive junto con la banda de frecuencia cardiaca pero no he podido enlazarlo con mi teléfono, podrían ustedes decirme como le hago para poder enlazarlo y así me de cuanta de cual es mi frecuencia cardiaca al corre, muchas gracias y saludos.

  7. Hi, I'm consulting you, I haven't decided yet between a vivoactive or vivoactive Hr * the one with the built-in heart meter* that is about to come out, I practice triathlon but it's very expensive for me the 920tx wanted to know if there is any application that makes the watch suitable for triathlon races?

  8. Hello, thanks for your website, very useful, you could advise me I'm thinking of buying a watch with gps, but I need to be able to see the topographic maps on the mobile, could do with the Vivoactive, otherwise which would advise me.
    Thank you

    1. To view maps on your phone you need an application, the clock does not interfere at all.

      If you want topographic maps on a watch, the Garmin Epix offers it.

      1. Thank you very much for your answer, then on the Vivoactive with an application 1TP11I could see the maps, do you know which is the best application.
        Thanks for recommending me the Epix, but it's a bit out of my budget, I've seen the Fenix2 in amazon at 239, and at 219 the vivocative, I run urban and mountain races of 10-20 km, no more, I do a lot of hiking because I'm a high school teacher and I do a lot of routes with students, which one do you advise me or advise me a different one, I like to know my HR.
        Whatever I buy, I'll do it through the link on your website.
        Greetings and thanks

        1. It's dwMap, but I haven't tried it. Obviously the Fenix 2 is superior in everything, but also much bigger, heavier and with worse screen.

          If you want a barometric altimeter, the Fenix 2. If you don't mind that, I think that with the Vivoactive with dwMap you will be more than satisfied (and that you save)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Los campos obligatorios están marcados con *

Back to top button