02D13: Fitness Tracker Transition Shortlist


Sunday - KidZania Singapore

While it was still raining in the morning, we did eventually get out of the house to bring them to Palawan Beach at Sentosa. My older nephew was all over the place running across the sand, digging up millipedes, and swimming pretty far. The younger one was content to stay on the beach and play with the sand - but more with a toy excavator that had been found and now claimed by him.

I had spent the better part of the afternoon with them and in between trying to get more reading in and resolving whichever minor problems (or disputes) they needed help from Uncle to resolve, I've also been doing a LOT of research into possible replacements for my dying Fitit Sense. The support team confirmed today that I'm not eligible for any sort of return or replacement (they no longer have full support in the Philippines), so I really think I'm going to switch out. That means trying to get out of the Google/Fitbit ecosystem somehow.

Today's research project was focused on the viability of Garmin since they have full support in the Philippines and a pretty crazy range of products. There's some mixed feedback about their recent changes to their mobile app but at least there's some sort of Fitbit data import option (albeit a rather manual one) that might make the jump less painful. I'm still not sure if it offers 2-way sync via Google Health Connect, but maybe it won't even need to if I just switch over completely to Garmin.

Now the Garmin option that is closest to my Fitbit Sense appears to be the Garmin Venu sq, but as a 2022 release, it also seems like it's already getting phased out. I wouldn't mind a cheaper deal for it, but it would make more sense to go with something newer. Based on my studies thus far, the most viable may end up being the vĂ­voactive 5, which is a bit pricier but definitely has the right feature set for my typical use case. The only real caveat is that it has a circular face versus a more square one, so it'll limit the screen real estate to a greater degree. It's sort of a toss-up between this and the Venu 3, but that's a PHP10k jump in price that doesn't feel warranted. The main differences between the two (other than price) are the addition of rather niche features like a barometric altimeter, Bluetooth calling and phone support, calculating floors climbed, a jetlag advisor and the ECG app, to name a few. 

It's on sale both at Singapore Airlines' Krisshopand at iShopChangi for the SAME rate, so those are interesting duty-free options, at least. I will try to see if I can check out the device in person while I'm here before I make a final decision.

I also have a potential watch in mind for Tobie, but we'll get to that later.