I’ve just published the full Fitbit Charge 5 vs Garmin Vivosmart 5 comparison video up on YouTube. I plan to finish converting that into a written post, but in the meantime, this covers all those nuances in way more depth than I set out to. Turns out, it’s not as easy and straightforward as you might think.
At first glance, the common theme in comments I heard was “But Fitbit Charges You For Your Data…” and “Garmin is Missing Baseline 2022 Features”. And yes, both of those are true, but not quite to the extent that one might think at first glance. For example, yes, Fitbit charges you for some of your data. But in general, a lot of the data they charge you for is things Garmin doesn’t do anyways at this price point (e.g. HRV or Skin Temperature). And even then, you still get 7 days’ worth for free. Same goes for aspects like their Stress score. The baseline is free, however, breakouts of what contributes to stress requires a subscription. However, Garmin doesn’t show stress breakouts anyways, so…it’s a wash?
Inversely, yes, Garmin is missing a lot of seemingly core things (like a usable sunny-day display while working out). But, they try and make up for it with better heart rate accuracy and deeper workout insights. Same goes for more longer-term data, or even broadcasting out your heart rate to apps like Peloton or Zwift.
There’s definitely pros and cons to both (lots of pros…and lots of cons), but the devil’s in the detail on what you want.
Anyways, here’s all the chapters in the video with timestamps (or, you can just use the YouTube Chapters option in the video above as you slide along the bottom of the timeline).
0:00 Quick Overview
0:30 General – Pricing
0:54 General – Display Differences
1:57 General – Battery Life
2:25 General – Bands/Straps
2:39 General – Phone, Alarms, Contactless Payments
3:33 Health – Daily Activity Tracking
4:38 Health – Sleep Tracking
5:27 Health – Respiration/Breathing/SpO2
7:17 Health – ECG (Electrocardiogram)
8:00 Health – Stress Measurement
8:48 Health – Skin Temperature & HRV Measurements
9:20 Health – Optical Heart Rate Sensor & Resting HR
10:34 Health – Daily Readiness vs Body Battery
11:30 Health – Apple Health Sync
11:51 Sports – GPS Feature & Differences
13:32 Sports – Workout Heart Rate Accuracy
14:06 Sports – Broadcasting HR to Apps (e.g. Peloton)
14:30 Sports – Sport Profile Options
15:18 Sports – HIIT and Intervals
15:38 Sports – Live Tracking
16:00 Sports – Post-Workout Details
16:29 Sports – VO2Max & Fitness Age
16:46 Final Recommendations
Phew! And, there’s even some sections within that with more details that I couldn’t quite fit without kinda-sorta breaking the YouTube chapters feature due to so many chapters.
With that, thanks for watching!