Garmin announced three new mid-range and upper-end Forerunner watches. The updated products replace the existing FR220 and FR620 with all-day tracking, smart alerts, bigger screens and bigger battery life.
The Forerunner 230 and Forerunner 235 are essentially the same watch, with one exception, the FR235 includes a Garmin Elevate optical heart-rate sensor on the back to measure heart rate at the wrist, giving runners the option to run without a strap, while the 230 is compatible with ANT+ heart rate straps. Both the 230 and 235 have new, 44% larger, sunlight-readable displays with a color graphical interface to display heart rate data, so runners can get the data they need at a quick glance. Also when used with heart rate, Forerunner 230 and 235 users can get their VO2 max estimate, predict race times, and get a recovery timer, so they know how long to rest before attempting their next hard run. With up to 16 hours of battery life in training mode and 5 weeks in watch mode with activity tracking and smart notifications, the Forerunner 230 boasts extended battery life to get more workouts in on a single charge. The 235 can get up to 11 hours of battery life in training mode and up to nine days in activity tracking mode with smart notifications. Both the 230 and 235 are also water resistant to 50 meters to withstand the elements.
The Forerunner 230 will be available in black/white, purple strike/white and force yellow/black, and will begin shipping in Q4. It will have a suggested retail price of $249.99 and the Forerunner 230 Bundle with Premium Heart Rate Monitor will have a suggested retail price of $299.99. The Forerunner 235 will be available in black/gray, black/marsala and frost blue/black, and will begin shipping in Q4. It will have a suggested retail price of $329.99.
Featuring Garmin’s most advanced running watch technology yet, the touchscreen Forerunner 630 boasts more running dynamics than its predecessor. It also includes vibration alerts and Wi-Fi, which lets you automatically upload your workout and activity data even if your phone isn’t in Bluetooth range. The FR630 is able to track stride length, ground contact time balance, vertical ratio, lactate threshold, stress score and performance condition. Pace, speed, distance, time, calories burned and the other usual expectations are covered too. Plus activity tracking and sleep get measured even when in normal watch mode. The high-resolution color touchscreen is 44% larger with an updated graphical interface is also easy-to-read at a quick glance, so users can stay focused on their run.
- Stride Length: Measures the length of a runner’s stride in real time.
- Ground Contact Time Balance: Measures a runner’s ground contact symmetry, which some runners have found to correlate with injuries or strength imbalances.
- Vertical Ratio: The cost-benefit ratio of vertical oscillation to stride length, serving as one indictor of a runner’s efficiency.
- Lactate Threshold: Estimates the level of effort at which fatigue rapidly increases in terms of a runner’s heart rate and pace.
- Stress Score: Measures heart rate variability to make an assessment of a user’s overall level of stress.
- Performance Condition: Provides a real-time fitness-level measurement relative to a runner’s average baseline, which indicates performance readiness for the day’s workout or race.
The Forerunner 630 will be available in black/white and midnight blue, and will begin shipping in Q4. It will have a suggested retail price of $399.99, and the performer bundle with HRM-Run will have a suggested retail price of $449.99.