Garmin Fenix 3 HR Smart Watch Review

To be totally transparent, I received the Garmin Fenix 3 + HR as a gift (a hand-me-down really…), so this may be a biased review as my satisfaction is not a function of spending money. That being said, I will review my experience with the smart watch, but won’t comment on the value.

The Garmin Fenix 3 HR is a wonderful step up from my previous Pebble Steel smart watch. It is everything I wish my old watch had minus a few small details. I am active enough that the stats tracked by the watch can be represented in more than just a 1-D space. This leads me to one of my favourite things about this watch, the ease of access to your “health” data. ¬†Other than the initial setup of the watch, tracking everything from calories burned to HR and sleeping is effortless and can be visualised on the Garmin Connect app. If the user wants to do anything more with the data, exporting to CSV format for workup in MATLAB or R is easily completed in under 1 min.

Quick note on my dislikes

While the Garmin Connect app for Android and iOS is great, the PC port feels like it was made for an “intro to C++” university final project. Although not a major issue for me, some of the user created watch faces and apps are slow/inefficient (small lag on order of ~0.5 s). In terms of the physical design of the watch, it is a bit large for a fitness watch.

The small CONS list I made up for this watch is greatly  outweighed by the versatility, durability, and endless possibilities this watch has to offer and is a must have for any data junkies like me (and fitness folks too, I guess).

Garmin Fenix 3

Garmin Fenix 3










  • ~3/4 month battery life
  • Durable
  • Tracks almost everything
  • Garmin mobile software
  • Connect IQ developer uploads


  • Slight input lag
  • Garmin PC software
  • Large