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Garmin vívosmart 3 could be the best entry-level tracker, ever

The device is waterproof and includes such high-end fitness monitoring tools as VO2 max and fitness age, along with wellness monitoring with all-day stress tracking.

Garmin vívosmart 3 could be the best entry-level tracker, ever

Garmin announced the vívosmart 3, its latest mass-market activity tracker with an ultra-slim design and a "hidden display that's only on when you need it" (and which obviously saves battery). The device is waterproof (you can swim with it), and includes what Garmin says are "high-end fitness monitoring tools" such as VO2 max and fitness age, along with wellness monitoring with all-day stress tracking. Also, there's Garmin Elevate wrist heart rate technology, smart notifications, music playback control, and a battery that delivers enough juice to keep things rolling for up to five days.

"Health conscious customers are becoming more interested in the meaning behind their activity stats," Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of worldwide sales, said in a statement. "As in, I like seeing the data, but how does it correlate to my overall wellbeing? With its new fitness and wellness monitoring tools that tell you things like fitness age and stress level, the vívosmart 3 is able to provide users with those answers, and that is a game changer for the activity tracker industry."

That VO2 max score is particularly interesting as this is the first product in Garmin's vívo family to include it — previously is was available only in higher-end Garmin running watches. Users will see their VO2 max score translated into a fitness level, ranging from poor to superior. The same score is also used to calculate fitness age, a relatable metric that puts a user's fitness level in terms of an age.

The vívosmart 3 also includes a new Strength Training activity that lets users stay focused on their form and does the rep counting for them. Additionally, the device can calculate and measure one's stress level, display it as a wedge graph right on the device and suggest a breathing exercise to relieve it.

All of the standard features are there as well, including tracking steps, heart rate, floors climbed, calories, distance and sleep, along with the option to measure activity intensity through Intensity Minutes. Plus, thanks to Garmin Move IQ activities like walking, running, biking, swimming and elliptical training will be automatically recognized without any action on the part of the wearer.

The vívosmart 3 automatically syncs with the Garmin Connect mobile app throughout the day to save stats for easy access later. Available in black (small/medium and large) and purple (small/medium), the vívosmart 3 is available for purchase at major retailers nationwide including Best Buy, Dick's Sporting Goods, REI and Amazon, and has a suggested retail price of $139.99.

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