Garmin at CES

Looks like Garmin will release some new toys for us at CES this year.

Firstly, thew watch we knew about previously has a name. It’s the…Vivoactive 3 Music. It does now have Verizon connectitity though (so I assume USA only for now). Manual available at

Next, it looks like we also have a new Bluetooth HR strap. Not a lot of other information there at the moment, but it says HR monitor and Bluetooth so I’ve assumed a few things πŸ™‚

Finally, a new Approach G80 is on the list. Not really this site’s thing but it’s there and I was posting anyway. Someone asked about Approach recently so there you go πŸ™‚


  1. ha ha, loved the deliberate typo in your ‘ooh err missus’ moment (it’s a UK thing)

    Vivoactive 3 Music was released in June 2018. I saw the FCC listing you refer too as well and there is something about LTE in the docs.

    I’m more excited about the BLE strap (very excited in fact…it’s my thing). hopefully it’s a BLE-enabled HRM-tri also with some extra goodies. I’ve just binned my tickr-x as it keeps dropping out and am now relying on my last remaining dual-band chest strap (4iiii viiiiva), so the timing of garmin’s new Β£100 chest strap is impecable. it’s probably tri-related to tie in with their tri-revamp this year and the specs should be worth looking into as they might give some clues on what’s coming in the new tri watches.

    • I may have been hung over when I wrote that. I won’t correct it now you’ve commented πŸ™‚ BLE is a terrible technology. It would be the supreme irony if Garmin make the only one with real broadcast that works like Ant+ (aka properly!). My thought is that thee hardware will be standard so one filing with three devices (tri, swim, run). I wouldn’t expect much in terms of feature, they’ve not worked out what running dynamics does yet so why add more gibberish data?

      • “connectitity”

        • Connectitity is the most important feature. I’m surprised you’re not up to speed on it yet πŸ˜‰

          • there’s got to be a joke there somewhere if we look hard enough.

  2. Is this actually a VA3M or is that not a placeholder name and manual. The only point of the submission is regulatory compliance, right? So they can copypasta all non-regulated text?

    IOW this is surely a VA4, no? Note the manual is woefully incomplete on any user-interface with the LTE capabilities.

    • Are you saying that regulatory compliance is possible with incorrect documentation?

      • No I think he’s saying that the FCC only care that the regulatory bits are correct. I agree but don’t think Garmin are that clever to change a manual to hide things. We’ll see this week πŸ™‚

        • Yes, this is what I’m saying. The FCC is only reviewing the regulated language. I do not believe it will be called the Vivoactive 3 Music and I do not believe the manual will make no mention of what features LTE adds to the existing Vivoactive, regardless of what it is called.

          • Well I’m a Monkey’s Uncle. Vivoactive 3 Music Connected By Verizon. That’s a mouthful.

  3. and so nothing fenix 6 ?????

    I’m really desperate …

    possible exit, for the fenix 6, in June? sigh sigh

    I hope at least that the cardio belt has better features than the HRM-XXX series

    do you have other details about the band?

    you’re a myth!

    • Fenix 6 is due next January (2020) I’d say as the 5 plus is only 6 months old and there isn’t realistically any competition. If you’re looking for a new watch the Fenix 5+ is a great one and fixes everything that was wrong with the Fenix 5 plus adds useful features. The Fenix 6 will probably add PulseOx which isn’t a useful feature, and possibly extend the battery life which isn’t really needed by many people anyway. They’d probably achieve that by using the Sony chipset, and you really wouldn’t want that right now judging by the Polar and Suunto. It’s likely we’ll also see LTE in the Fenix 6, and we’ll have to see how that works out on the VA3M this week. Personally I don’t need or want LTE on a watch as I go outside to get away from my phone when running or riding!

      • COROS uses the same chipset and is pretty good on the GNSS front

        I think the main draw of LTE will be connectivity-enabled services, the most obvious being streamed music. Not sure it would even have traditional call capabilities but would probably have some sort of token-SMS offering. Garmin would probably rather have a snapchat app and a whatsapp app rather than SMS (prob both is better!)

        • Oh I can see what it would be used for, I just don’t think those things are necessary and certainly not at the cost of yet another subscription. Music doesn’t need to be constantly streamed, the Fenix 5+ music services are great and can swap out music between activities over wifi if you really can’t stand hearing the same music twice πŸ™‚
          I really, really, really don’t want messages on my workout. I’m sure they will add it but exercise should be a time to switch off and de-stress!

          • >> exercise should be a time to switch off and de-stress <<
            True, but if you’re a parent you want to be reachable. I only run without LTE if it’s going to be under an hour.

            And on long runs, I never know when I’ll need an Uber πŸ™‚

  4. thank you so much lusty, you’re very kind.

    some concerns about F5X+: the dimension, but i need pulse-oximeter.

    I had the f5 47mm sapphire edition and that was perfect (from the dimension POV).

    I had also the F3HR (51mm) and it is very big compared to my wrist…

    so i’m thinking about it.. waiting for garmin press release / presentation to decide.. πŸ™

    as you, I’m not interested in comms features but only medical, sport and lifestyle…

    do you ride? or bike?

    i write from italy

    some other news about the new HR bandstrap? some interesting news? I can not understand the need to issue new cardio bands if there are no news in terms of functionality.

    the various HRM-XXXs are perfect

    thank you again


    • Yes I ride a Bianchi and wish I was in Italy πŸ™‚ The new functionality will be Bluetooth so nothing exciting I can see there.

  5. A just hope they release this VA with a better resolution and better HR ….and also change the design … the last one was not good enough ….. is there any chance to see something new in the 300$ watchs ?

  6. Garmin should think about something genius to keep a comfortable tech distance to other players…
    * larger, high contrast screen (tiny bezel)
    * infinity battery life (see
    * thin body
    * map/routing for all

  7. Does anyone know what kind of new gear Garmin will launch in Q1 targeted at triathletes?
    Successor to the Forerunner 935? New chest strap technology?
    I want to upgrade my Tomtom Spark 3 to something more serious.

    • It’s a bit old but you won’t be unhappy with the 935, just find one in a sale.

  8. I’m frustrated with the addition of music to many watches, which decreases the battery life. I hope when they release new watches there are options with no music storage too.

    • Music only decreases battery life if you play music, otherwise the devices are as good as if not better than the version without music.

  9. Hello everyone
    I was expecting the release of fenix 6 from Garmin at vas 2019
    Do you believe it will be announced for this summer as 5 plus
    Or at vas 2020

    • CES 2020 is my bet.

  10. Positively titalating.

  11. Are you alive? Almost 1 month and not a peep from you.

    • haha yes I’ve just been extremely busy with my real job. Normal service should resume soon πŸ™‚

    • BOOM! Back in the game.

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