January 20, 2018
I went for a bike ride today. I knew immediately that since my last ride @Garmin had updated my Garmin Edge 1000. Garmin of course would never tell you this. Heaven forbid Garmin could communicate anything.
No, I learned when nothing was synched. No heart rate, no cadence, no speed, I just had one big blank screen.
I really knew it had been updated when I stopped the tracking, went into sensors and tried to have the sensors’ sync with my Edge 1000. Well wouldn’t you know it the update worked so well it froze my Edge 1000. In the past, I’ve thought about carrying instructions with me on how to unfreeze my Edge 1000 because it happens so often, but I don’t. So, I finished my ride looking at a blank screen.
So, I had a great bicycle ride. Not sure how long I went, where I went, what my heart rate was, what my cadence was, if my heart rate changed with my cadence or hills, all those things, you spend $800 to know.
The last time this happened this bad was in June of 2017. The updates basically froze my Edge 1000 for a couple of weeks. Garmin never said anything, never admitted there was a problem, just kept putting out updates and screwing things up. I was able to confirm that Garmin knew about it later talking to a tech rep.
I write this looking at my Garmin Vivosport. It is sitting here on my desk, not on my wrist because it is dead. Not quite 60 days old and some update to either the Vivosport, my android phone or Verizon killed it. 87 minutes on the phone last night with a very nice Garmin tech, who eventually gave up, after waiting for a call back for over an hour.
Last night, was not my first night talking to #GarminSupport about my #Vivosport. Out of the box, it would not work. That was three hours total waiting and then talking to tech support just to get it to work the first time.
So less than sixty days old and I’ve got close to FIVE HOURS with Garmin Tech support for a $200.00 Garmin product.
So, two Garmin products on my desk, over a Thousand Dollars retail and neither of them are doing anything like Garmin advertised nor what I paid for. Bricks are a lot cheaper if I need a paperweight, and I doubt I’ll have a desire to throw the brick out the window.
I started counting how many Garmin Products I own now or have purchased for family members, and how many I have owned.
Currently, I own.
Vivo something for girlfriend
Garmin Car Navigation (dad)
Delta Sport XC (Dog collars (2))
Golf device (nephew)
Garmin Edge 350
This Edge 1000 is my 5th Garmin cycling computer.
And honestly, I can’t remember what else I’ve owned. But that is a lot of Garmin products, too many to put up with this crap.
What do I want?
I want Garmin to tell me when they are updating my devices. That way, I know I can’t just grab them and go. I know I’ll have to wait for the update and grab my Garmin Sheets and spend an hour getting ready to go.
My Garmin sheets are a spreadsheet of what I want on m Edge 1000 for my various bikes: 2 road bikes and two mountain bikes. There is a lot of information to put back in after an update. Garmin says their updates don’t affect my information, but that is a load of crap. My Garmin sheets are four years old and get used at least once or twice a year. I use them so much I have a name for them!
You would think I would ask that the updates don’t turn my Edge 1000 into a just out of the box nightmare. However, I don’t think that will ever happen. They tell you that so much they must believe it. Sometimes you have to be realistic on what you hope for. I have a better chance of winning Powerball than Garmin updating a product and not screwing it up.
I want the updates to work. Not fry my Edge 1000 or make my Vivosport a paperweight. I never know why the updates are needed. I just don’t need them turning my devices in projects or paperweights.
I want a survey at the end of my two-hour phone calls with tech support to be something other than platitudes. Have you ever taken that survey? All it does is make you tell Garmin how great they are. Last night I hung up after the fifth question. The answers Garmin was going to get would only reinforce the marketing department egos, so they could do the same the higher ups. It was not going to provide relevant information about how bad the tech support really is. People on the phone are great, last night the tech person was extremely apologetic he could not get my device to work. But my vivosport still does not work.
I want my Garmin Products to work!
I wrote this article January 20, 2018. I contacted Garmin, I’ve tweeted Garmin and was told I never contacted Garmin. Then I was asked to supply my email address which I did.
January 26, 2018
So at the @OutdoorRetailer Tradeshow I mentioned this article. I also shared it with an employee of Garmin. Yesterday I received an email and a tweet from Garmin. The tweet clarified that my statement I contacted Garmin said Saturday and it was actually Friday when I was on the phone with them. That office I was on the phone with was closed Saturday so they were confused. My fault!
@Garmin did not have a booth at the Outdoor Retailer Tradeshow. Bad move. I always learn a lot at the tradeshows about my products and now that I know there is tons more to learn, I’ll probably show up with products in hand and questions to ask.
February 6, 2018
The email was followed up by a pretty high level person in the Garmin program who went through my issues. I learned a lot. All of which is not in any Garmin manual or on the Garmin website.
Instead of charging my Edge 1000 on a charger, I should charge it on my computer. That way updates won’t be a problem in the future if I check on Garmin Connect right before I disconnect the Garmin. In the Upper Right Corner there is a little watch. If there is a blue dot, an update is available. If you have the app Garmin Express, a blue dot on your product in Garmin Express also means you have updates.
- There are a crap load of updates.
My Vivosport is not really a brick. It can still record activity and will store it for a long time, I just can’t see it on my phone or Garmin Connect. Garmin Connect on my phone has a software issue with Verizon (my carrier) and the Vivosport. I’m not on a list to be notified when that changes. (I was told previously I was on a list…..)
- So now when I charge my VivoSport I charge it connected to my computer. I use Garmin Express and it updates the VivoSport and downloads the information.
The people I’ve been on the phone with have always been extremely polite and worked hard to solve my problems. The person(s) tweeting can get testy. 🙂 But I suspect I can push them a little harder on twitter.
Are the problems solved? No. Do I feel better. Yes. Do I have workarounds to my issues. I think but not all.
I still don’t know what I’m doing with my Vivosport during the day. Every 3 or 4 days when I charge it I can see what I did, but that is worthless. I could carry my Edge 1000 or Edge 350 and accomplish a lot more. The purpose of a VivoSport is to learn throughout your day how and why and then change. 3-4 days later doesn’t help. So technically my VivoSport works, but actually, it is still a brick. I wear it on my arm because I don’t really have any paper to hold down.
Are the engineers who seem to run Garmin going to communicate more or better? I doubt it. If you are not an engineer or have hours to spend just clicking things you’ll never learn enough on how your Garmin products, Garmin Express or Garmin Connect work.
Thanks to the un-named employees who probably leaked my article upline. Thanks to the people who called and spent hours on the phone with my trying to help.
But the problems still exist. Garmin communicates like we are all engineers and only when pressed. I’m not an engineer. I also don’t have time to contact Garmin and spend almost 10 hours on the phone for a $200 product. I have it on again and someday I hope to see what it says.
Still love my Garmin Products. But Garmin, as a company selling to consumers you suck…..still.
What do you think? Leave a comment.
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