garmin vivoactive hr review

Garmin Vivoactive HR Review – GPS smartwatch for the all-round enthusiasts

Watch Review: Vivoactive HR

Editors Rating:

Multisport Features

Watch Design

Ease of Use


Enjoy the benefits of a smartwatch with more features than a standard activity tracker. The Garmin Vivoactive HR is a GPS smartwatch able to track wrist-based heart rate, and it also has built-in sports applications to suit user needs. While Garmin has other product options available, this watch suits an athletic person looking for a more sports-oriented tracker than other options on the market.


  • Through a connection with a smartphone app, it is easy to learn how to use this watch
  • Customize the watch face with metrics and features most used to suit personal needs
  • Touchscreen so you can switch the display quickly
  • Get weekly charts and averages for every type of activity, specifically heart rate and other key metrics. A resting heart rate tends to be a good indicator of fitness levels
  • Battery life is high, especially for use just in watch mode. Garmin reports it to last for five days and with GPS on this should last 16 hours.
  • Excellent sport tracking support with specific monitoring for sports like golf, swimming, hiking, and running.
  • The watch band is replaceable for further customization, and smart notifications go to the watch when synced to a smartphone.
  • Access to more than 1,300 apps, data fields, widgets, and watch face designs in the Connect IQ Store.


  • An inability to measure “multisport” functionality if a user is alternating activities. The user must change the watch to a different sport manually.
  • Running metrics are not as extensive as other Garmin products. It does record speed, distance, and pace.
  • No open water option for users that love to swim, although the open water feature is available with other Garmin products.
  • Screen brightness is low, so it gets tough to see the screen when outdoors.
  • Does not look like a traditional watch, which is the preference of some users.

Garmin Vivoactive HR Review

The Garmin Vivoactive HR is an investment sure to last while tracking and using GPS along the way. This smartwatch is designed for users that are interested in a little bit of everything. In appearance, it is square and modeled after the popular FitBit trackers – but it offers more options!

Most notable Vivoactive HR features:

Experience the difference with the newest Vivoactive update on your wrist. To personalize the watch according to individual specifications, get to know the features made available by Garmin. The most notable features of the watch include:

Activity Tracking:

Are you looking for a long-lasting activity tracker for dependable numbers? The Garmin Vivoactive HR fits regular wrist circumferences (there are options for different wrist sizes) and meets regular watch needs as well. Personalization is an option, whether it is to download a specific screensaver or make the home screen show favorite statistics, Garmin spent time on customizable features.

Connect to a Smartphone:

Whether you are running, cycling, golfing, swimming, or just tracking activity, the watch connects to a smartphone once in range of the phone. This means all activity stays right in one place in easy to read charts.

Garmin Face It App:

The Garmin watch face application allows users to customize a device with everything from a photo, to the way time is displayed.

Automatic Exercise Recognition:

Without setting the watch to exercise mode, it recognizes exercise and movement. The tracking is accelerometer based on movement. The watch includes a variety of sports so when participating in one activity, like running, set it to that mode.

Every Metric a User Needs:

Inside the waterproof watch case, a purchaser is sure to find every type of measurement resource necessary. This watch has a GPS for positioning, a barometric altimeter to verify location based on pressure and altitude, an electronic compass, and an optical heart rate monitor.

garmin vivoactive hr can be used for a range of sports

What Type of Athlete Will Love This Product?

A versatile athlete with a focus on activity tracking will like the Vivoactive HR. The touchscreen is easy to use and suits a person while active and working out. The ideal user of this product likes the square or rectangular shape of a standard fitness tracker but is more of an athlete than a pedometer user.

The perfect user of a Vivoactive HR is an athlete interested in various sports, working on improvement, and tracking activity. Users that participate in running, biking, swimming, skiing, snowboarding, golf, rowing, paddle boarding, and activity tracking. Don’t purchase this item when looking for a standard option just to track steps. Garmin makes products that work for people that care about activity and tracking.​

review of the garmin vivoactive GPS smartwatch with heart rate

Overall Recommendation for the Vivoactive HR

Looking for a high-quality product designed for athletes? Garmin is a company known for innovation, quality, and a commitment to product design. Purchase the Vivoactive HR to work along with a smartphone and as a watch for everyday wear. This product is highly recommended and suits most active adults!

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