Test: Garmin Lily – glorified activity bracelet

My first thought when I hear about Garmin Lily is “good idea!” It is presented as a smartwatch for women. I know several women who run and like to use Garmin’s training watches, but perhaps prefer to leave them for everyday. They are large and fluffy and look like dive computers. Taking Garmin’s excellent system for logging and supporting training and packing it in a smaller and more sober package feels like a winning idea.

My second thought, however, is “pink tax”. The pink tax is a term coined for the phenomenon when companies think they can charge extra for things just by claiming that they are specifically aimed at women. The typical example is razors for women which are more expensive even though they really only have slightly different colors than the razors for men.

So it was with these two pictures of what product awaited me that I unpacked the Garmin Lily for testing, and unfortunately the contents of the package were closer to the latter than the previous one.

Expensive pedometer

Anyone expecting something like Garmin Venu or Vivoactive will be cruelly disappointed. With its monochrome screen and limited functionality, Lily has more in common with Garmin’s activity bracelet, or for that matter with Xiaomi’s Mi Band 6, which costs SEK 500. Here, however, you have to pay between SEK 2,200 and 3,000, depending on the design, for approximately the same functionality.

So it’s the design you largely pay for. According to the stamp, the bracelet on my test copy is made of Italian leather and is of a high class, while cheaper variants have plastic bracelets. The bracket is not standard for watch bracelets so you are referred to Garmin for a new bracelet if it wears out. The watch itself is mostly made of plastic, with a metal ring around the screen in glass. The screen itself has a kind of patterned film on the inside that looks nicer and above all more luxurious in the picture than in reality. The idea is that it should look like a nice case on a luxury watch, but since the screen is behind the pattern, it reminds me more such as plastic film you put on the bathroom window to prevent transparency. The women I try the design on in my environment are not impressed, but they are on the other hand of the kind that they can actually imagine wearing a watch from Garmin’s regular range.

The screen is thus a monochrome LCD display, where you can choose between a pair of dials that show the clock and training information, by pressing the display. There are no buttons. The watch is controlled by pressing and swiping to the sides and a pressure-sensitive surface under the screen that acts as a virtual button. The screen should light up when I lift my arm but it does not work very well and I am often referred to double-tap the clock to wake it up.

Missing GPS

Garmin Lily keeps track of classic activity meter values ​​such as number of steps, heart rate, calories burned, active minutes, and Garmin’s own measure Body Battery, a useful index for balancing activity against recovery. You can log training, but only a limited number of forms of training are available. Above all, Garmin Lily does not have its own GPS, so if you want the distance you have run properly logged, you need to bring your mobile phone whose GPS watch then calls. If you want to be able to listen to music during the running session, activate voice assistant, install third-party apps or pay with the watch, you are referred to products other than this.

You can receive notifications on the watch, and respond to them with default phrases, but you can not edit the options.

The watch can measure the blood’s oxygen saturation, but only during the night, and if you turn on the function, the battery life drops drastically, even without it is not very impressive in terms of functions. I manage four days on a charge with the oxygen measurement turned off and two days with the oxygen measurement on.

The information you get on the watch when you activate training is surprisingly spartan. When walking, for example, you only see steps and distance. No pulse. In Garmin’s mobile app you get all the more information, and the app with all its information about your health data is in a way Garmin Lily’s greatest strength. But you can also access it with a wide range of other Garmin products, and most of them offer more value for money than the Garmin Lily.


Source: Mobil by www.mobil.se.

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