Garmin have been a dominant force in recent years when it comes to GPS running and fitness watches. They have continued to compete strongly alongside other big players such as TomTom and Fitbit and are not letting up. Garmin have just released two new watches to their GPS fitness watch lineups, including both their highest end watch to date – the Garmin fēnix Chronos – and a brand new entry level model – the Garmin Forerunner 35.
Garmin fēnix Chronos
This new watch is an extra addition to the current fēnix range. The internals of the watch and all the features which are available are exactly the same as those which you’d find on the current Garmin fēnix 3 HR watch, however the big difference is the externals.
This new Garmin adds an extra special feel to previous Garmin watches, entering the realms of the high end designer watches. Here, Garmin have encased the previous fēnix 3 HR (yes, there is an optical heart rate sensor built into this designer level watch) in a brand new designer body. It brings elegance and class to what is essentially just a fitness sports watch. Now the watch can easily be worn with a suit or any other smart clothing meaning you don’t have to continuously change watches from smart to sport each time you go out for a run.
Obviously there hassle of having more than one watch is not a great one but it does mean that the extra expense of buying a high end watch to wear out whilst also buying a high end fitness watch has been eliminated as the two have been brought together.
There are three difference models to the new fēnix Chronos, each of which at a different quality and price point: (it is important to note that each watch also comes with a sport band which can easily be swapped from the expensive straps).
- fēnix Chronos with Titanium Hybrid Watch Band – £1,099
- fēnix Chronos with Brushed Stainless Steel Watch Band – £949.99
- fēnix Chronos with Vintage Style Leather Watch Band – £849.99
Another nice touch – although it is certainly to be expected given the high price level – is the wooden box which each of the watches come in.
Garmin Forerunner 35
Garmin have been playing around with their cheap entry level watches for a few years now but as of yet I feel as though they always have fallen below par and haven’t quite lived up to the quality of their higher and mid range watches such as the Forerunner 235. Currently, the Forerunner 25 is the cheapest and lost spec Garmin watch which unlike older versions such as the Forerunner 10 has been more successful.
Garmin have subsequently released the Garmin Forerunner 35 which is still a lower end watch but has become more advanced as it too gains an optical heart rate sensor as all of Garmin’s new products have done. This watch is retailing at $199.99 and adds new features on top of the Forerunner 25 such as:
- Optical Heart Rate
- Smart Notifications
- Wireless Data Transfer
- Live Tracking
- Music Controls
These new features on top of the optical heart rate sensor take this low end watch into field of the higher end watches but without the price tag. This is certainty classed as a smartwatch with the new connectivity features which are seen on the highest end watches of the Forerunner 630.
But despite the move into the smartwatch area, the essential features which we have come to expect on all tracking devices nowadays have not been forgotten about. There is improved all day and all night activity and sleep tracking, alongside the GPS running capabilities. As it comes from Garmin who have a good reputation, it would be expected that this is of a high standard as seen on their other watches.