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To appreciate the truly monumental magnitude of this endorsement by my wife, you have to understand 5 germane facts:
- My wife is not new to fitness trackers or Fitbit; she actually was a very early adopter of Fitbit and had their original clip-on tracker 10-years ago.
- My wife has, and usually wears, a Garmin Vivosport with GPS and has owned a Fitbit Alta HR & Flex 2.
- My wife, earlier this year, wore both a Fitbit ‘Versa Lite‘ and a ‘Inspire HR‘ and was not overly impressed.
- My wife is very fussy about what she will wear on her wrist (and it takes a lot of convincing on my part to get her to try these watches that I get for evaluation).
- My wife is the dream demographics for this Fitbit.
I was blown away. She likes her Garmin and could not wait to take the ‘Versa Lite’ and the ‘Inspire HR’ off a wrist. The Versa 2 she loves. And the reason is fairly simple. The BRIGHT, BIG AMOLED display. AMOLED displays, when properly implemented are addictive. They look so bright, crisp, vivid and appealing. So, it is basically the display, and display alone! Everything else she pretty much got with her Garmin — which has GPS to boot. But, she never uses the GPS.
This is good news for Fitbit. My wife is THE target market for this Apple Watch ‘killer’. If my wife loves it, so will legions of other females. And that, as far as Fitbit is concerned, should be all that matters.
They, HRM USA, is having a Fitbit Versa 2 GIVEAWAY.
Search ‘Garmin’ & ‘Fitbit’.
Garmin’s ‘Vivomove Luxe/3’ & Vivosmart 4 Now Get ‘Connected GPS’ — Provided You Have Your Smartphone Handy.
Click Images to Enlarge.
All images from garmin.com
What I find here is that these watches did NOT have ‘Connected GPS’ from the get-go.
I have only ever bought Garmin, Fitbit or Amazfit watches with GPS so I have never required ‘Connected GPShttps://www.garmin.com/en-US/blog/fitness/connected-gps-now-on-vivosmart-4/‘.
I know that it has been available with Fitbit for a number of years. I have heard people talk about it. Thus, I had just assumed (incorrectly, of course) that Garmin must also have this capability by default.
The ‘Vivosmart’ is a $130 band. I can just about fathom why it doesn’t have GPS. For $40 more, you can get a ‘Vivosport‘, with GPS and a color display. That is what I got my wife.
The hybride ‘Vivomove’ with fixed hands and hidden color touchscreen is a $350 to $550 watch. You would think Garmin would offer GPS — maybe even as a $50 option. Guess not.
I love GPS on my watch. I use GPS, near daily, if I am doing a serious walk/run or hike. I do it to get (hopefully) a better distance measurement, i.e., GPS rather than accelerometer and gyroscope. Yes, GPS still leaves much to be desired, especially if you double back on yourself or walk in circles. But, I convince myself that the milage it shows is within +/- 5%. Yes, I have tested distnace with multiple watches (given that I have had at least 12 over the last 2-years) and vehicles.
Using the phone GPS is not the same. Yikes. I feel bad.
Very frustrating. And I am a Garmin shareholder to boot. Yikes.
I have had 12 Fitness Trackers In The Last 2-Years.
I fully appreciate the dynamics and physics. I am NOT new to this and as you can see above I have been LUCKY enough to have(/evaluate) 12 decent (one could even say ‘high-end’) activity trackers over the last year, spanning Garmin, Fitbit, Polar and Amazfit. And I will say upfront: ‘in my opinion Garmin, especially with the likes of the Fenix 5 (Plus) is better at counting steps than a Fitbit’. But, that is kind of old news.
My wife wears a Garmin Vivosport. She has the same questions. How much of the step count is phantom?
It is inevitable. The accelerometer has to measure arm movements. It has no idea I am in the shower and standing still. It thinks I am walking. And then there was the 6-weeks when I was on crutches! Never counted my labored steps, and I was walking more than most — on the crutches — because my left hand wasn’t moving enough! Again, I understand. Just frustrating.
Why it always happens in the shower these days has to do with my latest ‘schedule’ of the last two-months. As I continue to recover from my knee surgery I have upped the mileage on my morning walk/run from ~3.5 miles to 4+ miles — always with GPS on. Given that a GPS mile equates to about 2,400 steps I am at about 9,700 — 9,800 steps when I get home. Then I get in the shower. Then I hit my GOAL. Bingo.
I did some EXTENSIVE step count record keeping with the Fitbit Inspire HR. With brushing teeth and showering I was clocking up around 400 steps in the bathroom. So, Garmin isn’t doing too bad.
Yes, I walk more than 10,000 steps MOST days. In the days I do, I am in excess of 14,000. So, the 10,000 is not my max. I also realize and tell people that what counts is the trend. Doing the same number of (or more) steps each day.
But, wanted to share this because it has got so rote — having the Garmin do its ‘GOAL’ celebration while I shower.
Oh, I average 41 floors count a day. I go past the 10 floor goal every day (as long as I am not on crutches). I usually hit that goal in the first 30-minutes of my walk/run because I live on the side of a ‘mountain’ and can’t go in any direction without doing some major elevation changes.
I too have had MY say.
This is NOT a new topic for I.
The thing I found most interesting was that a hip-mounted clip will be more accurate at counting steps than a wrist-worn device. AMEN to that. I now know that, even with a $1,750 top-end Garmin MARQ Expedition, at least 10% of the steps I register a day (and I average over 10K/day) are FAKE. I just use the step count as a guide — try to do 10K+ as a goal. If I am going for a proper walk I use GPS on the hope that it is more accurate — but GPS has issues too, i.e., trees/tall building, going back on yourself (like walking around in tight circles).
It talks about heart rate and calorie burn too. I am pretty happy with my HR tracking since I have checked it, so many times, on multiple devices.
Anywho, skim through the article. You are sure to find a few things that will interest you.
‘Fitbit Inspire HR’, Even With Latest Firmware, Still Over-Counting Steps — Compared To Garmin Fenix 5 Plus.
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Spot the difference.
Worn all day, side-by-side. 24-hours. Midnight Wednesday to Midnight Thursday.
I have been testing this for MONTHS!
I have had doubts about the accuracy of the ‘Fitbit Inspire HR’ from day one — i.e., way back in mid-March when I was given one for evaluation.
To begin with the overcounting of steps — i.e., FALSE STEPS — by the Fitbit Inspire was horrible. It was way, way, way out.
Then a few days ago I downloaded the latest Fitbit firmware. I was sure that they would have tried to fix the problem — which was pretty widely known.
Well it has got better, but it is not perfect.
600 FALSE STEPS is still a LOT.
Click to ENLARGE.
Spot the difference.
Worn all day, side-by-side. 24-hours. Midnight Friday to Midnight Saturday.
She started wearing them, together, on Thursday,
so we can get a 24-hour reading on Friday.
I have tested it against other watches too.
You can draw your own conclusions. I had a hunch. I needed proof. I started logging steps on an Excel spreadsheet. But, right now, 3-weeks after major knee surgery, I am on crutches. Step counts don’t work too good with crutches.
My wife wears a Garmin Vivosport. So, I convinced her to help me test. She started wearing the Inspire HR on Thursday so that we could get a full day count on Friday. Well, you see the numbers. You make up your own mind.
Both bands needed charging. So, we are not going to test them today, i.e., Saturday. We will try again tomorrow.
My wife was speechless. She has heard me ranting and raving about fake steps. She just thought that it was just I … Now, she saw proof and was AMAZED.
This, from what I have read, for a much sought after feature on Apple Watches. Some were buying Apple JUST for this feature and you may even have read a few stories about folks crediting the Apple Watch of saving their lives by notifying them of abnormal heart rates.
So, Garmin had no option but to respond and it is good that they have done so now … ahead of the new wave of watches that are supposed to be announced by the likes of Samsung over the next few months.
It has, as you can see from the second image, on the latest beta software for the Fenix 5.
It is not a feature that interests me but I know that many of you will be thrilled. So, go for it. All the best.