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  Reply # 1297414 4-May-2015 09:09
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freitasm: Android and Windows Phone both do tracking as well, it's not an iPhone only thing.

Fitbit is great because of the gamification angle: friends list, competition during the week, etc.

I have a Fitbit Aria WiFi scales at home and by just walking (and replacing Coca-Cola with Coca-Cola Zero) I was able to lose  9 kilos in the last few months. When there's no Coca-Cola Zero I drink normal coke. Not a completely "OMG, I can't have this or that". I still eat the same as before (meats and pastas being the main staple) but a bit less. And walk an average of 12,000 steps/ daily.

The problem with the Surge is that it's not a good looking watch. It's actually a tracker, it just happens to show the time. You could easily keep it on the right-hand while wearing your watch on the left hand but people will ask why wearing two watches - just tell them to mind their own business. 

I wouldn't mind the Withings because that is a good looking watch and would be happy to wear it to a formal occasion or daily.





 

Swiss company Mondaine have a very nice looking Helvetica Smart watch coming out that you may like (depending on how much info you want). Expensive - only price info I found so far suggests "around US$900"





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  Reply # 1297499 4-May-2015 11:03
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Geektastic:
Do you not find it a bit, well, large? 
I like it, even though it has many things I would probably never use, but it looks enormous on all the wrist shots I have seen.


nope, but then I'm not exactly a small person and I prefer large watches. If youve ever used a sports/GPS watch before of similar standard then I dont think it is too much different in terms of bulkiness. here it is on my arm right now next to my flex (which I still use)

the main reason I would promote this thing is battery life

If I use the default sensors and activity tracking + watch and occasional short bike ride for GPS.. I get at least 20-24 days out of it.

fenix3




 
 
 
 




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  Reply # 1297541 4-May-2015 12:09
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fizzychicken:
Geektastic:
Do you not find it a bit, well, large? 
I like it, even though it has many things I would probably never use, but it looks enormous on all the wrist shots I have seen.


nope, but then I'm not exactly a small person and I prefer large watches. If youve ever used a sports/GPS watch before of similar standard then I dont think it is too much different in terms of bulkiness. here it is on my arm right now next to my flex (which I still use)

the main reason I would promote this thing is battery life

If I use the default sensors and activity tracking + watch and occasional short bike ride for GPS.. I get at least 20-24 days out of it.

fenix3


Thanks for the photo. Still think it is quite big even though I have owned Rolex Sea Dwellers, IWC Aquatimers and so on which are all big - that somehow looks bigger. Perhaps the shiny bezel makes it look that way - if it was all matt black it might not?

How have you found GPS accuracy? Garmin's own forum is full of people who are complaining about that, amongst other things. I doubt I would care if it was a few percent out - if I ever ran far enough to want to tell anyone how far, I think I'd be ok with a few percent margin of error! ;-)





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  Reply # 1297624 4-May-2015 13:20
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Geektastic:
How have you found GPS accuracy? Garmin's own forum is full of people who are complaining about that, amongst other things. I doubt I would care if it was a few percent out - if I ever ran far enough to want to tell anyone how far, I think I'd be ok with a few percent margin of error! ;-)


The latest firmware just about fixed everything. The very first time I used it , the results were quite weird as there were moments where I apparently just ran circles in the street or ran through solid walls. after it cached some sat data it seemed fine. I still use an edge 500 on my bike which has been more reliable than anything and the two always record the same navigation data now, though my body throws the temperature out by a few degrees on the fenix3....if I use the bike adapter (the reason I opted for the non metal strap) then they are the same. I have never felt the need to enable GLONAS on the fenix3 as GPS has always been accurate enough for me.
You can get a darker metal but apparently it scratches off easy so I just opted for the stainless steel look which I prefer. It is very open to customized layout and data etc, I havent got round to downloading any apps from connect IQ yet but it is nice to know there are quite a few available for it. Haven't tried it swimming yet either.
I had planned to upgrade from the fitbit flex to the surge but it just isnt good enough for cycling and isnt waterproof enough.
So I waited for the release of the garmin vivoactive but I found it just fell a bit short in the cycling/battery life area.
I much prefer the HRM strap for heart monitoring that the fenix3 came with as I've yet to see a worth while optical monitor that works during both idle and heavily active periods.
DC rainmakers review of the two ended up deciding it for me.

http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2015/04/garmin-vivoactive-in-depth-review.html
http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2015/03/garmin-fenix3-detailed-review.html

I already had a fitbit flex for the missus and myself, together with the aria scales. Fitibit have, imo, the better online data/dashboard and step/sleep tracking seems better....but I keep it so that I can motivate my partner (by always destroying her activity scores). Garmin connect is not far behind, and some features like automatic sleep mode are nicer....I do wish I could merge the two (probably can using some kind of ITTT module or something).

batterylife, waterproofing, ruggedness, multi-sport, smart watch to phone features. 
That is what I was after and after all the things I looked into, only the fenix3 did a good job at all things.

price and lack of bike quick release kit is probably the only negative I can think of so far.






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  Reply # 1297664 4-May-2015 14:56
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fizzychicken:
Geektastic:
How have you found GPS accuracy? Garmin's own forum is full of people who are complaining about that, amongst other things. I doubt I would care if it was a few percent out - if I ever ran far enough to want to tell anyone how far, I think I'd be ok with a few percent margin of error! ;-)


The latest firmware just about fixed everything. The very first time I used it , the results were quite weird as there were moments where I apparently just ran circles in the street or ran through solid walls. after it cached some sat data it seemed fine. I still use an edge 500 on my bike which has been more reliable than anything and the two always record the same navigation data now, though my body throws the temperature out by a few degrees on the fenix3....if I use the bike adapter (the reason I opted for the non metal strap) then they are the same. I have never felt the need to enable GLONAS on the fenix3 as GPS has always been accurate enough for me.
You can get a darker metal but apparently it scratches off easy so I just opted for the stainless steel look which I prefer. It is very open to customized layout and data etc, I havent got round to downloading any apps from connect IQ yet but it is nice to know there are quite a few available for it. Haven't tried it swimming yet either.
I had planned to upgrade from the fitbit flex to the surge but it just isnt good enough for cycling and isnt waterproof enough.
So I waited for the release of the garmin vivoactive but I found it just fell a bit short in the cycling/battery life area.
I much prefer the HRM strap for heart monitoring that the fenix3 came with as I've yet to see a worth while optical monitor that works during both idle and heavily active periods.
DC rainmakers review of the two ended up deciding it for me.

http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2015/04/garmin-vivoactive-in-depth-review.html
http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2015/03/garmin-fenix3-detailed-review.html

I already had a fitbit flex for the missus and myself, together with the aria scales. Fitibit have, imo, the better online data/dashboard and step/sleep tracking seems better....but I keep it so that I can motivate my partner (by always destroying her activity scores). Garmin connect is not far behind, and some features like automatic sleep mode are nicer....I do wish I could merge the two (probably can using some kind of ITTT module or something).

batterylife, waterproofing, ruggedness, multi-sport, smart watch to phone features. 
That is what I was after and after all the things I looked into, only the fenix3 did a good job at all things.

price and lack of bike quick release kit is probably the only negative I can think of so far.


How is destroying her scores motivational for her rather than you? ;-)

The thing which really lets the Fitbit stuff down I think is the inability to swim with it - it seems pointless to have such a device but have to take it off when actually doing some exercise!

The more I look at it, the less straightforward it gets. Hands down on aesthetics and general use acceptability the winner is the Withings Activite. Fully waterproof, 8 month cheap easily replaced battery, gorgeous to look at. However, can't see it in the dark, limited info on watch (not in app) and I suspect that the strap would be too short for my 200mm wrist diameter: also very hard to easily get in NZ as no dealer here and not sure how robust it would be, as I tend to be a bit hard on my stuff.

Cheaper and generally useful is the Charge HR or the Surge, but both are ugly (especially the Surge) and belong in the gym not IRL - and you can't swim them. (Every time I say the word Surge in my head, a camp French voice says in my head "You want some espresso or maybe a cappuccino? It's nice - I make it myself in the back  with a little lemon twist!" and you get points if you know what I am talking about!)

The Fenix is expensive (although not much more than the Activite really) and way overkill for me - it does all kinds of things I won't ever do - but can have more than one time zone (widget), can swim, can tell you where you are, works well on a bike, is generally cool and so on. Downsides are clunky charger (another one to carry when travelling!) and less than best in class sleep monitoring assuming I could sleep with it on at all! It's also a bit GI Joe for dress wear.

Where did you buy your Fenix - that does not seem too common either although I found a couple of places with it on line.









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  Reply # 1297669 4-May-2015 15:08
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Geektastic: 
How is destroying her scores motivational for her rather than you? ;-)


hehe she is quite competitive but also lazy, If I don't beat her targets or scores then she will say "I'm beating you so thats enough for me I wont work any harder"
If I match or only just beat her scores it will be "I'm working just as hard as you are...we can keep this going"
If I destroy her scores she gets annoyed and starts to up her activity to make sure she is either close or doing better than I am.
She is not too happy with the scales though as females cant help but have a wider range of lean vs mass etc than males have....but it makes up for is by recognising users and showing her name next to a smily face :)

Geektastic: 
Where did you buy your Fenix - that does not seem too common either although I found a couple of places with it on line.


Kiwivelo, they have a store right near where I work and live....I very much dislike that store but they stocked it as soon as it was available so it was really the best option

I don't notice it when sleeping as I have it on my wrist 24/7... I've always done that with watches.
as for formal wear, I dress suit smart at work all day and it doesnt seem out of place. Most people comment on it looking cool or they just jump right in to....you must do loads of activity/sport! etc. some fools ask why I don't get an apple watch. 
I agree that it is overkill, half the things on the start menu I will never use like Ski, triathlon, trail run....but Id rather have it capable of doing more than I need than only covering 90% of what I need. Plu it is motivation to maybe one day actually do those extra things.






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  Reply # 1297675 4-May-2015 15:17
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freitasm: The Surge is not waterproof.

It is water resistant to 50M however. 

On the US website they state this openly and also note that they recommend you don't shower with it on as they believe you should let your skin rest (or some nonsense)...the don't wear 24/7 thing comes from a fear of being sued if users don't dry their skin properly and get irritation...

I have a Surge (that I use daily) and a Charge (that I use when i want to use a normal watch for a change and still count my steps), but I lose the GPS functionality by using it. 

I use a sweatband over my Charge when playing sport and have surprised myself with the level of activity that I obtain on a the football field. 

Personally, the gamification has completely sucked me in...i am constantly battling friends to see who is the greatest Weekend Warrior, or who can out hustle the Workweek Hustle etc. 






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  Reply # 1297679 4-May-2015 15:22
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Handsomedan:
freitasm: The Surge is not waterproof.

It is water resistant to 50M however. 
On the US website they state this openly and also note that they recommend you don't shower with it on as they believe you should let your skin rest (or some nonsense)...the don't wear 24/7 thing comes from a fear of being sued if users don't dry their skin properly and get irritation...


yeah I think it gets pressure tested etc on here too, and it passes.
http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2015/01/fitbit-surge-depth-review.html
But I've had a play with one and wasn't convinced of the build quality and its ability to maintain a seal for long enough or under any decent abuse.
 It was enough for me to consider it not suitable for being in water with.





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  Reply # 1297697 4-May-2015 15:30
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  Reply # 1297732 4-May-2015 16:00
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freitasm: Their staff posted in their forums saying clearly to not use it for swimming - it will resist water splashes but not submersion.


Yeah, I read that too. 

They've moderately backtracked on that in another conversation on their forums, but still state that the water resistance does not make it an ideal swimming watch as they can't guarantee it'll stand up to it. 




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  Reply # 1297735 4-May-2015 16:03
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Handsomedan:
freitasm: Their staff posted in their forums saying clearly to not use it for swimming - it will resist water splashes but not submersion.


Yeah, I read that too. 

They've moderately backtracked on that in another conversation on their forums, but still state that the water resistance does not make it an ideal swimming watch as they can't guarantee it'll stand up to it. 

The Garmin Vivoactive has a swimming app.




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  Reply # 1297747 4-May-2015 16:21
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Dulouz:
Handsomedan:
freitasm: Their staff posted in their forums saying clearly to not use it for swimming - it will resist water splashes but not submersion.


Yeah, I read that too. 

They've moderately backtracked on that in another conversation on their forums, but still state that the water resistance does not make it an ideal swimming watch as they can't guarantee it'll stand up to it. 

The Garmin Vivoactive has a swimming app.


Garmin need to get with the program, like Fitbit...I think they have superior products, but seem hell-bent on playing the serious card, where Fitbit are clearly going for the everyman, who likes a bit of fun and motivation in his exercise...




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  Reply # 1297758 4-May-2015 16:26
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Handsomedan:
Dulouz:
Handsomedan:
freitasm: Their staff posted in their forums saying clearly to not use it for swimming - it will resist water splashes but not submersion.


Yeah, I read that too. 

They've moderately backtracked on that in another conversation on their forums, but still state that the water resistance does not make it an ideal swimming watch as they can't guarantee it'll stand up to it. 

The Garmin Vivoactive has a swimming app.


Garmin need to get with the program, like Fitbit...I think they have superior products, but seem hell-bent on playing the serious card, where Fitbit are clearly going for the everyman, who likes a bit of fun and motivation in his exercise...


I agree. In fact there is no reason why they can't have an app with dual personality.

You're that guy who thinks the Marathon de Sables is a stroll in the park? Use Expert Fitness mode.

You just want to count steps, calories, go for the odd jog, swim and walk etc? Use Personal Fitness mode.





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  Reply # 1297770 4-May-2015 16:56
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Geektastic: 
I agree. In fact there is no reason why they can't have an app with dual personality.
You're that guy who thinks the Marathon de Sables is a stroll in the park? Use Expert Fitness mode.
You just want to count steps, calories, go for the odd jog, swim and walk etc? Use Personal Fitness mode.


I actually think the fenix already is like that. By default after initial setup, it is a simple watch that has step/sleep tracking with altimeter/temp/barometer/compass enabled and running automatically...it will happily run for over a month on one charge like that. no config or fiddling with it is required. you can even tell it to go pure watch mode and the battery life goes up to multiple months (apparently...I haven't owned it that long).

If I then want to do an actual activity I use the start button and select the predefined activity from a list, that initiates all relevant extras for that one type of activity and alerts you clearly when it is ready to go, then once you say you've finished that activity it reverts to being the watch again and disables anything that isnt needed. Same goes for Wifi up/downloads and bluetooth smart watch features and so on, they only stay on if you tell it you want that to happen.

If I want to go 'expert' I can drop into the menus and start to configure all manner of sensors and plans and onscreen GPS routes to follow or lap targets etc.

At no point has this thing ever seemed complex or 'too much'....especially compared to the garmin920xt which was pure ¿?¿? 

The only thing that would make this a bit more friendly for most is touchscreen but I am actually glad it doesn't have that as Id forever be hitting the wrong thing during activities or struggling with wet fingers. I think if you found this too 'expert' then the vivoactive is what you would probably prefer. And if that is too much and you just want a basic smart watch with activity step based tracking then it would be the vivosmart. If it is just for step based tracking then I love the pure simplicity/batterylife (yet oodles of dashboard data) and pure indestructible build of the fitbit flex.








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  Reply # 1297844 4-May-2015 18:31
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fizzychicken:
Geektastic: 
I agree. In fact there is no reason why they can't have an app with dual personality.
You're that guy who thinks the Marathon de Sables is a stroll in the park? Use Expert Fitness mode.
You just want to count steps, calories, go for the odd jog, swim and walk etc? Use Personal Fitness mode.


I actually think the fenix already is like that. By default after initial setup, it is a simple watch that has step/sleep tracking with altimeter/temp/barometer/compass enabled and running automatically...it will happily run for over a month on one charge like that. no config or fiddling with it is required. you can even tell it to go pure watch mode and the battery life goes up to multiple months (apparently...I haven't owned it that long).

If I then want to do an actual activity I use the start button and select the predefined activity from a list, that initiates all relevant extras for that one type of activity and alerts you clearly when it is ready to go, then once you say you've finished that activity it reverts to being the watch again and disables anything that isnt needed. Same goes for Wifi up/downloads and bluetooth smart watch features and so on, they only stay on if you tell it you want that to happen.

If I want to go 'expert' I can drop into the menus and start to configure all manner of sensors and plans and onscreen GPS routes to follow or lap targets etc.

At no point has this thing ever seemed complex or 'too much'....especially compared to the garmin920xt which was pure ¿?¿? 

The only thing that would make this a bit more friendly for most is touchscreen but I am actually glad it doesn't have that as Id forever be hitting the wrong thing during activities or struggling with wet fingers. I think if you found this too 'expert' then the vivoactive is what you would probably prefer. And if that is too much and you just want a basic smart watch with activity step based tracking then it would be the vivosmart. If it is just for step based tracking then I love the pure simplicity/batterylife (yet oodles of dashboard data) and pure indestructible build of the fitbit flex.




Bit the bullet Fizzy. Fenix should arrive Weds. Bought from same place: rang Wellington store direct and managed a small discount to boot!





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