• News
  • Columns
  • Interviews
  • BW Communities
  • Events
  • BW TV
  • Subscribe to Print
  • Editorial Calendar 19-20
BW Businessworld

Fitness Band Meets Smartwatch

Photo Credit :

There are a number of fitness bands and smartwatches available in India today, but the consumption of such devices has still not hit a high. Even with the slow adoption, various brands are still trying to push their wearable devices in the market. Garmin, better known for making GPS devices, jumped into the wearable business last year and their latest product is the Vivosmart activity band which is essentially a fitness band which tracks your steps, calories and so on. It also serves as a smartwatch as it has an OLED touchscreen display.
The Vivosmart is similar to Samsung’s Gear Fit but without the brilliant curved AMOLED display. It is made out of a flexible rubberised material with a black finish on top and a coloured accent on the bottom which is available in four colours; berry, blue, black, slate and purple. Like most fitness bands that are two prongs to lock the band on your wrist. There are no physical buttons but you can interact with the band through the touchscreen. Just double-tapping activates the display and you can swipe left or right to scroll through your various activity stats, notifications, control your music player or just check the time.
The band is waterproof so you can wear it in the shower or when you are swimming without any issues. The battery life is pretty decent on the band as you get about 6-7 days of backup before you need to charge it. The charger is a simple USB chord with a clamp on one end which attaches to the band. It can get tricky to attach it as it needs to be aligned to four contact points on the bottom of the band.
The band connects to your Android or iOS device via Bluetooth and you need to sync the band with Garmin Connect app. Once that is successfully done, the band starts calculating your activity including the number of steps you take, the amount of calories burned, and the amount of hours you have slept.  The tracker is not the most accurate as there were instances where it converted a slow car ride into steps and giving an alert of finishing the set goal of 7500 steps.  The sleep tracker is not intuitive at all as there is no automatic sleep mode. You have to go into the band and turn on the sleep tracker and when you wake up you need to switch it off.  There is also an alarm feature which wakes you up in the morning by vibrating on your wrist.
Apart from calculating your activity stats, the band also gives you some features available on a smartwatch like quick notifications for email, Whatsapp, SMS, calls, etc. You can also set the apps for which you want notifications from, but only if you have an Android device. There is also a feature to control your music, which comes handy if you are out jogging with some beats on.
The Vivosmart is a bit on the expensive side bearing a price tag of Rs. 10,990. For this price it is quite disappointing as it isn’t the most accurate one out there. Some of the features might be intriguing, but it doesn’t offer anything unique that other bands or smartwatches don’t offer.