Garmin Venu 3 vs Vivoactive 5

Garmin Venu 3 was released in August 2023 and Vivoactive 5 was released in September 2023. Both variants are relatively newer variants of the Garmin smartwatches.

We look at some important features and differences between the Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5.

Main differences

The main differences between the Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 are shared below:

  • Garmin Venu 3 is pricier than Vivoactive 5. The difference in cost is $150.
  • Venu 3 is broader than the Vivoactive 5.
  • Venu 3 has a higher device storage of 8 GB. Vivoactive 5 comes with 4 GB device storage.
  • Venu 3 has an in-built speaker and microphone. You can make and answer calls directly from the Garmin Venu 3 smartwatch. Vivoactive 5 does not have an in-built speaker and microphone.
  • Vivoactive 5 lacks sensors for Gyroscope and barometric altimeter. Venu 3 comprises both sensors.
  • Venu 3 has a marginally better battery backup than the Vivoactive 5.

Essentially, you are getting higher device storage, speaker, microphone, gyroscope, altimeter, and better battery backup for the additional money spent.

Additionally, there are additional activity profiles in the Venu 3.

We look at some significant features and differences between Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 below.

Garmin Venu 3 Body Battery

Display specifications

Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 come with 3rd generation Corning Gorilla Glass. Both smartwatches use an AMOLED display.

Due to the AMOLED display, both watches also support the Always-on-display mode.

A list of important display specifications of Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 is shared below.

Display specificationsGarmin Vivoactive 5Garmin Venu 3
Display lensCorning Gorilla Glass 3Corning Gorilla Glass 3
Display size30 mm or 1.2″36 mm or 1.4″
Color displayYesYes
Display resolution390 x 390 pixels454 x 454 pixels
Ambient light sensorYesYes
LED FlashlightNoNo

Physical specifications

The biggest differentiator in the physical attributes of Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 is the presence of an in-built speaker and microphone.

Also, the bezel of Venu 3 is made of stainless steel. Vivoactive 5 has an aluminum bezel.

With the speaker and mic, you can make or answer calls directly using the Venu 3 smartwatch. Venu 3 also has a sensor for the Gyroscope and Barometric altimeter.

Venu 3 also has double the device storage of Vivoactive 5.

A list of physical specifications of both watches is shared below.

Physical specificationsGarmin Vivoactive 5Garmin Venu 3
Watch size42 mm45 mm
Watch dimensions42.2 x 42.2 x 11.1 mm45 x 45 x 12 mm
Thickness11.1 mm12 mm
BezelAnodized aluminumStainless steel
Watch weight36 g47 g
Band size20 mm22 mm
Recommended wrist circumference125-190 mm135-200 mm
Water rating5 ATM5 ATM
Swimming profilesPool swimming, Open water swimmingPool swimming, Open water swimming
Device storage4 GB8 GB
NFC PaymentsGarmin PayGarmin Pay
Wireless connectivityANT+, Bluetooth, Wi-FiANT+, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi
Barometric altimeterNoYes
Garmin Pulse Ox SensorYesYes
Garmin Elevate Heart SensorYesYes
ThermometerYes (tempe sensor needed)Yes (tempe sensor needed)
In-built speakerNoYes
In-built microphoneNoYes
Android compatibilityAndroid 7 or higherAndroid 7 or higher
iOS compatibilityiOS 15 or higheriOS 15 or higher


Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 support GPS. GLONASS, and GALILEO satellite networks. However, both smartwatches do not have a multi-frequency positioning sensor.

Therefore, Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 do not support multi-band or dual-frequency GPS capabilities.


Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 offer full music functionality. On both watches, you get the following music capabilities:

  • You can store music or personal audio content on both watches for offline listening. The music files can be managed directly using the smartwatch interface or software.
  • You can control music on the paired smartphone using Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5.
  • You can download music streaming apps like Spotify and Deezer using the Connect IQ store. With a premium subscription, you can download playlists and music content for offline listening.

Garmin Vivoactive 5 in white

Garmin ECG app

The Garmin ECG app was approved by the FDA in January 2023.

The ECG app helps in detecting irregular heart rhythm conditions or Atrial Fibrillation.

Garmin ECG app is now available on Garmin Venu 3. It was not a part of the smartwatch at the time of launch. However, on 17 October 2023, the Garmin ECG app was rolled out to Venu 3 and Venu 3S smartwatch users.

Vivoactive 5 does not support the Garmin ECG app at this point. It may not be made available in the near future also because of the low price point of the Vivoactive 5 smartwatches.


The battery backup offered by Garmin Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 in different watch modes is shared below.

Watch modeGarmin Vivoactive 5Garmin Venu 3
Smartwatch modeUp to 11 daysUp to 14 days
GPS Mode without musicUp to 21 hoursUp to 26 hours
GPS Mode with musicUp to 8 hoursUp to 11 hours
Battery Saver ModeUp to 21 daysUp to 26 days

The most significant thing about the battery backups of Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5 is the Battery Saver Mode. The battery saver mode in both watches allows you to use the smartwatch at extremely low power settings for an extended period of time.

Both watches support fast charging. The smartwatches use the Garmin wire charger. You can go from an empty to a full battery charge in less than 2 hours time.

Activity profiles

Garmin Venu 3 does offer additional activity profiles as given in the comparison table below.

Activity profilesGarmin Vivoactive 5Garmin Venu 3
GymStrength, HIIT, Cardio and Elliptical Training, Stair Stepping, Floor Climbing, Indoor Rowing, Pilates, Yoga
Outdoor recreationSkiing, Snowboarding, XC Classic Skiing, Snowshoeing, Stand Up Paddleboarding, Rowing, Tennis, Padel, Pickleball, Disc Golf

Hiking, Indoor Climbing, Bouldering, Skiing, Snowboarding, XC Classic Skiing, Snowshoeing, Stand Up Paddleboarding, Rowing, Tennis, Padel, Pickleball, Disc Golf


Garmin Venu 3 and Venu 3S have a list price of $449.99. Garmin Vivoactive 5 has a list price of $299.99.

Final verdict

Garmin Vivoactive 5 is a lean and slim watch. Vivoactive 5 is priced very competitively and offers an AMOLED display as well. I really like the Vivoactive 5 for the simplicity and feature-rich offerings.

But, if you are keen on using the ECG app for detecting heart health and rhythm issues, Venu 3 should fit the choice.

Garmin Venu 3 does offer incremental features that include:

  • Garmin ECG app
  • Speaker and mic on the watch
  • Additional storage of 4 GB. Venu 3 has 8 GB storage and Vivoactive 5 has 4 GB storage.
  • Venu 3 offers a Jetlag adviser feature.
  • The stainless steel bezel of Venu 3 does lend a premium look. Vivoactive 5 uses an anodized aluminum bezel.

Between the two smartwatches, my personal preference is for the Garmin Vivoactive 5. It ticks all the boxes for me and is priced under $300 for a really competitive smartwatch offering.

More smartwatch comparisons

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