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Garmin Vivomove Review

Garmin Vivomove
  • Editor Rating
  • Rated 3 stars
£129 to £159
  • 60%

  • Garmin Vivomove
  • Reviewed by:
  • Published on:
  • Last modified: 2nd June 2018
  • Activity Tracking features
    Editor: 70%
  • Fitness monitoring features
    Editor: 70%
  • Ease of Use
    Editor: 95%
  • Battery Life
    Editor: 100%

The Garmin Vivomove is quite unique, especially in the Garmin product line up. It’s a TRADITIONAL watch with real hands … yes, they still make watches like this, fortunately. It’s got a clever MOVE BAR and ACTIVITY BAR running vertical up either side of the watch face to promote activity and movement through the day. The Garmin Vivomove fitness tracking watch has been reviewed by Tristan Haskins aka CardioCritic

The full range of Garmin Vivomove watches reviewed here

Release Date (UK) > August 2016

Product it replaced > None – Garmin’s first genuine ANALOGUE activity tracker

Note > Please also consider the Vivomove HR released in early 2018. Hybrid display brings excellent activity tracking functionality – plus smartphone notifications

Who’s It For?

The Garmin Vivomove is aimed at the customer who prefers a TRADITIONAL looking watch with regular analogue hands. It is available in many different colours with various strap styles from plastic/silicon to leather. The Vivomove features a daily ACTIVITY TARGET indicator on the left and a MOVE BAR on the right. The activity bar fills as you get closer to completing your daily target. The move bar fills 50% when you are active for ONE hour, then fills in increments of every further 15 minutes of inactivity until FULL after 2 hours. All the data is sent to the Garmin Connect APP on iPhone/Android phone via Bluetooth. As well as tracking daily activity it also gives feedback, via the APP, on calorie burn and sleep quality / duration.

Alternative products

I found the Vivomove to be a stylish and useful activity tracker in the style of a traditional watch. However, there are better similar products. Withings have some excellent activity trackers in stylish classic watch style cases. The new Withings Steel HR features an analogue activity tracking dial and wrist based heart rate. It also provides smartphone notification alerts on the small LED display.

>>> Back to Top of review

Pros & Cons


  • Classic traditional watch design
  • Clear indication of daily steps tracked
  • RED movebar indicator easily visible
  • Bluetooth connectivity for data upload to Garmin Connect (iOs / Android)
  • Long life battery
  • Cons

  • No back-light
  • No back-light
  • No luminous hand markings
  • A wise word from a user …

    I was lucky enough to have this innovative activity tracking watch for a few weeks. I really did like it, however, I had the all black version, black case, black strap and BLACK hands… I found it very hard to see the time in anything but bright light. Suggestion … get any model but the ALL BLACK one. Which reminds me of my only real criticism of this watch – no BACKLIGHT !!

    The back of the watch - Garmin Vivomove

    CardioCritic’s Video Review

    Here’s my own video review of the Garmin Vivomove. If you are interested in this watch this video should give you a good feel for the product from the perspective of an owner.

    Video (Garmin’s own)

    My own video review of the Garmin Vivomove will follow shortly. I have a demo unit kindly supplied by Garmin UK PR team and I hope to release the video review very soon. In the meantime, here is Garmin’s own PR video for the Vivomove. NOTE. They use the sensible WHITE faced unit and not the DARK face with DARK hands … there’s stealth and there’s “I can’t see the hands …”

    Vivomove in Gold case, white face, brown strap

    Step Goal

    There must be a lot of people out there who want to help stay fit and keep more active but don’t want to wear a modern fitness band like a Fitbit Alta or Garmin Vivosmart. That’s where the Vivomove comes in. It’s a traditional watch that can be worn all day, however, unlike any other traditional analogue watch, this one comes with a STEP GOAL. The step goal is calculated by Garmin’s software and automatically adjusts with your daily activity trends. If you want to override the automatic goal you can simply set your own via the Garmin Connect App. You progress towards your daily step goal is indicated by the STEP BAR on the left hand side of the watch face.

    Vivomove with white face, gold case and white strap

    Move Bar

    It’s not all about TOTAL steps. It’s also about continuous movement and activity throughout the day. The Vivomove has a MOVE BAR on the right had side that fills in as you period of inactivity grows. After TWO hours of inactivity the move bar goes completely RED as shown in the photo above. The move bar is rest by getting up and walking for 5 minutes or so.

    Garmin Vivomove black face, silver case, brown strap

    Bluetooth Connectivity

    The Vivomove is very easily paired with your Smartphone (iOs or Android). Once paired it will automatically synchronise your daily activity data to the Garmin Connect app.

    The Garmin Vivomove watch connected to the Garmin Connect app on Android or iOs

    Review Summary

    I really like the idea of a traditional watch with integrated step counter/activity tracker. It’s a nice combination of classic styling and wearable technology. If the Vivomove had a backlight of some kind or even luminous hands I would have given it 4/5 stars. However, with no night time viewing option it has been demoted to just 3/5. If I was in the market for a watch like this one I would seriously consider the Withings watches, especially the Metal HR with wrist based heart rate and an LED window for smartphone alerts and heart rate review … is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon properties including, but not limited to,,,,, or Likewise, we are members of other private affiliate programs and may earn comissions on purchases done by referrals at no additional cost for the buyer.