776 responses

  1. Kardassilaris Debbie
    October 11, 2015

    The display on VS seems to be wearing out where parts of the text or icons are missing from the top and bottom. It’s only 9 months old. Is this covered under the standard warranty?

    Reply

    • DC Rainmaker
      October 11, 2015

      For the US/Canada, it’s 1 year, for Europe it’s 2 years. I don’t know elsewhere what the warranty policies are – but I don’t think anywhere it’s less than 1 year.

      Reply

    • Brian
      November 8, 2015

      I’m starting to have the same issue. Good thing it’s still under warranty but not sure how long they will have this model now that the Vivosmart HR was just released.

      Reply

  2. Frank
    October 11, 2015

    They warranty replaced my third Vivosmart for exactly this problem. They wanted me to jump through a bunch of stupid hoops. Instead, I sent then a picture of the display where the missing segments were obvious and they sent me a new one right away. I had only had that one for about 60 days before that started to happen. The 4th one was new as opposed to refurbished and it is still working fine. It will get a good submersion text when I do some work under the boat tomorrow. We will see :).

    Reply

  3. Frank
    November 9, 2015

    No Low Battery Notification.

    Vivosmart #4 is shutting down without warning. It may have carried this flaw since it was new. I often recharge it long before the battery dies when I know I will be in front of the computer for an hour or two. However, twice recently I have looked down and found it dead as a brick without the usual low battery warning. Mind you this was after 5+ days without a charge so I don’t think it is dramatically shortened battery life. Just a failure of the low battery warning to ever appear.

    I am currently checking the battery level three times per day and recording the result. At 3 days, it was still showing full. Now, at 88 hours post-charge, it is showing two-thirds full. I’ll follow-up with the final result of this little experiment by Saturday (November 14) by which time it should have died again with or without a low battery notification.

    Support tells be that the low battery notification is set to go off at 10% remaining power. That means that, if the thing runs out at the short end of its specified life (5 days) it should show up during at least a 12 hour window. It would be hard for most people to sleep through that. I am checking at 6:00, 13:00, and 21:00 so there should be no way for me to sleep through the alert.

    My GF’s UP2 gives her a remaining battery life estimate on it’s mobile app (not just when the battery is low) and sends her text messages when the charge is low. If GC mobile has something equivalent to this, I have not been able to find it.

    Reply

  4. Blake
    November 21, 2015

    Does the Vivosmart have the ability to create and set timers?

    Reply

  5. Gypsi
    December 16, 2015

    Hi!
    I have recently lost a wrist based fitness tracker because of a failure of the band. How is the band on the Vivosmart? Will it come off easily by accident?
    Since the loss of my fitness tracker, I have been trying to find one with a watch-style band. Is there are nonwatch-style band that would be as secure as a watch-style band?
    Thank you!
    Gypsi Luck.

    Reply

    • kpcski
      January 13, 2016

      It is the most secure and comfortable band that I have tried and I have tried a lot!

      DCR knows even better though!

      Reply

  6. kpcski
    January 13, 2016

    I believe that ALL of these problems come from Garmin trying hard to increase their ability to claim long battery life with the vivosmartHR. The want you to stop your BROADCAST … they want to sample your heart rate less frequently (as that uses battery too) … Well in trying to save battery life, Garmin is making the KEY AND DIFFERENTIATING ability to broadcast your heart rate to a Garmin EDGE, http://www.zwift.com, or whatever VERY COMPROMISED. Here is my latest note to Garmin support. The more who write, then the better chance that these issues are resolved via a firmware update that I would suggest:

    1. Includes the ability to LOCKSCREEN by either pressing the single action key twice or holding down on the screen for a period of time when in ACTIVITY TRACK or BROADCAST MODE

    2. NEVER decreases the heart rate sample frequency while in Activity nor BROADCAST mode

    3. Does not allow notification to disrupt heart rate sampling or broadcasting

    Here is my note …

    I love my Garmin Vivosmart HR in many ways, but one of the key reasons that I bought it was so that I could use it to BROADCAST my heart rate to my GarminEdge1000 will indoor cycling. Unfortunately, the vivosmart HR needs to be improved due to these issues:

    1. The device needs a LOCKSCREEN. You cannot expect people who are exercising not to bump their device with their sleeve, etc. When the screen is bumped or sometimes even seemingly when NOTHING has been done, the device asks you if you want to end the broadcast. When that question is asked, the BORADCAST has already stopped. If you answer NO, then the broadcast begins again, but only with a default heartrate of 72bpm. The device then takes quite a long time to properly read my heartrate and begin broadcasting proper numbers.

    2. When broadcasting, if a NOTIFICATION comes thru the device, it interrupts the broadcast and again, later, sets the device heartrate reading back to to that default 72bpm. This is of course very annoying. It should not be that each time we put on broadcast that we need to turn off notifications. That is very clunky. Also I believe that some notifications cannot be turned off, such a low battery and such? This is an obvious glitch.

    3. Finally at some stage during a broadcast, I assume in a effort for Garmin to try to extend battery life, the sample frequency of the heart rate measurements seems to decrease. Is this happening when the device’s gyroscope feels decreased movement? Well, if someone is indoor cycling. then arm movement is not indicative of the need to decrease sample size.

    BOTTOM LINE — Garmin, you must know that the BROADCAST mode of the vivosmartHR (which is THE big differentiator of this product versus your competitors) is quite flawed, by at least the above.

    Can you please make sure that our BROADCAST is not disrupted due to lacking lockscreen issues while broadcasting and that the same rate of heart rate remains high and constant ALL THE TIME while we are broadcasting?

    Let the user worry about the battery life management and turning off the broadcast. Please do not auto LOCKSCREEN and please do not change the sample frequesncy AUTOMATICALLY. And surely, pls do not have a default broadcast of 72bpm — instead FORCE the device to take a proper reading. The 72 default reading is an absolutely gigantic flaw.

    Thanks. Kevin

    Reply

    • Frank
      January 13, 2016

      Kevin, as a fitness device geek, I am in favor of every suggestion you have proposed. However, I think this is one of those cases where the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.

      First, remember that the VSHR is first and foremost an activity tracker. Secondarily, it is a device for tracking your heart rate while engaging in intentional exercise. It’s ability to broadcast your heart rate comes in a distant and questionable third in the VSHR’s list of advertised HR based capabilities. If I were the VSHR product manager, I would have dumped this feature altogether in favor of pairing with an Ant+ HRM that would actually work during exercise (chest strap or optical).

      Second, in my personal experience and through reading countless reviews of these offerings, I have noticed an inverse relationship between optical HR devices’ battery life and their measurement fidelity. For example the Mio Link and Scosche Rhythm + do a good (but not great) job of measuring HR but have a battery life measured in hours. The VSHR, Fitbit Charge HR, and Apple Watch last all day or longer and do a poor or at least highly inconsistent job of measuring HR particularly when engaging in moderate to vigorous exercise.

      Third, optical HR monitors in general seem to work much better for some people than others. They seem to work particularly poorly on me. My Scosche does an acceptable job if I wear it on my forearm but has some crazy spikes and dropouts even there and even under a shirt. Plus the Velcro band is constantly letting go mid-activity. My Mio link (which seems to work for everyone else) had to go back. As you have probably guessed, I’ve got no problems with my chest straps. I think I am up to 10 of those now (5 Garmin, 3 Polar, 2 BTLE).

      Fourth—the Many. Four out of five purchasers of the VSHR will not own a premium, exercise specific, Garmin device like a Forerunner or Edge and don’t read this blog or participate in the Garmin user forum. For those, broadcast mode is pointless and, probably, incomprehensible. For me and the half of us that it works poorly for (because of poor measurement) we will stick with dedicated HRMs. The “Many” will doubtless often find a way to enter broadcast mode and/or lock their screens inadvertently resulting in an avalanche of support traffic and a generally poor reputation for the product.

      You would not ride a beach cruiser in the Tour de France so why are you using an activity tracker to monitor your heart rate during vigorous, intentional exercise? Instead, let’s get Garmin to support HRM pairing so I can quit wearing my fenix to the gym. Of course, that would amount to a tacit admission that their on-board HRM isn’t so great for everything. Probably not going to happen.

      Reply

    • kpcski
      January 13, 2016

      Frank,

      I understand your points. I however saw — maybe wrongly — that the VSHR could finally be the activity tracker AND sports hrm in one … After all, that is why Garmin DID include the ACTIVITY TIMING and HRM BROADCAST MODE in the device. That is what attracted me to the device. Someone is going to get this right and have a wearable that works for all day tracking and sport tracking … it may or may not be the VSHR. What I am encouraged by is that the request that I made should all be possible with a firmware update that:

      1. Creates a LOCKSCREEN or makes unintentional BROADCAST ending less frequent
      2. Does NOT SLOW SAMPLE rate due to movement inactivity
      3. Does NOT ALLOW NOTIFICATIONS to disrupt HRM MEASUREMENT & BROADCAST

      Really … my requests are small and the COST will be battery time, but that BATTERY LIFE usage will be at the discretion of the user. I agree that some daily activity tracking users will never use the BROADCAST, so the decreased battery life will not impact them …

      BOTTOM LINE — GARMIN — PLEASE ALLOW ME TO WASTE MY BATTERY on THE VSHR if I want to do so to broadcast my heart rate accurately.

      Reply

    • Frank
      January 13, 2016

      Points well made. Even if my personal capillary topography apparently makes me a poor candidate for optical HR, they should make the VSHR work for most people in the applications for which it is marketed. If it worked well for intentional exercise (as advertised) it would obviously work much better with the enhancements you have suggested. The notification brain fart fix is a no-brainer.

      By the way, my VSHR does not always start at 72 when I first swipe to that screen. I have seen initial values as low as 52 and as high as 74 before it begins to take actual readings and settles on something that usually makes sense (if I am sitting still). I’ll try to pay attention to what it does after a notification during an activity

      Reply

    • kpcski
      January 13, 2016

      Thank you Frank.

      Reply

  7. C cybulski
    January 19, 2016

    vivosmart HR took some adjusting after the fitbit Charge HR because of the size difference and the simplicity of the fitbit charge. the ‘sweeping’ of screens and the ‘dull’ display. But a waterproof unit was important for me,

    I am still having an issue with the temperature display remaining in F degrees rather than C despite changing all the settings everywhere to Celsius..temp screen is a reall bonus screen to me with our extremely cold temps here. Overall I do really like the unit.

    Reply

    • Frank
      January 19, 2016

      I don’t know the answer to your units of measure problem but would like to point out that somehow kpcski and I ended up discussing the Vivosmart HR in the area intended for discussions about the original Vivosmart.

      Your VivosmartHR questions and observations would be better directed to here: link to dcrainmaker.com

      Having said that, I believe that the weather comes from your phone. Make sure that any weather apps there default to the units of measure you prefer. Someone on the Garmin user forum suggested “If you set your distance metrics to KM instead of Miles the device seems to assume you’re European (as opposed to USA) and you want your temp in Celcius (as opposed to Farenheit). Wierd but it works.”

      Reply

  8. si global
    March 22, 2016

    Hi Ray,
    Curious if you have heard anything from Garmin on Vivosmart enhancements. They have been very quiet.

    Reply

    • Ray Maker
      March 22, 2016

      I wouldn’t expect any further updates for the original Vivosmart. This past fall they released the Vivosmart HR instead.

      Reply

    • Robert Moresco
      April 8, 2016

      It would be cool if they could update the sleep tracking to be automatic like the Fitbit Alta.

      Reply

    • Ray Maker
      April 8, 2016

      It does now – it’s done behind the scenes automatically when you sync to Garmin Connect.

      Reply

  9. Irina
    April 12, 2016

    I am sorry to say that after almost 10 months the display finally started to fade.
    I read on the Garmin forum about this known issue and I hoped it will not happen to mine but it did.
    Slowly, from the top and bottom lines the pixels are not lighting up anymore.
    When i bought this I didn’t read anywhere about this issue, but now it seems to be more and more often.

    I read that Garmin will switch your bracelet if you send it back to them, but the new one will have the same fate in some months. This is based on the other forum posts I’ve read.

    Probably will look into Vivosmart HR…
    :(

    Reply

  10. Load More Comments…

Leave a Reply

 

 

 

 Notify me of followup comments via e-mail.

Add a picture

Back to top
mobile desktop