Running hasn’t changed all that much since the birth of humankind, other than being more recreational than essential nowadays.
And since GPS trackers were added to wristwatches, not much significant has changed in the world of wearables for runners either. But that hasn’t stopped Garmin from announcing two new Forerunners, less than a year after their predecessors hit store shelves.
They are the Forerunner 265 and Forerunner 965 — follow-ups to the 255 and 955 which appeared in June last year. That’s unusual for Garmin, which left three years between the ‘45 and ‘55 releases and it does mean that these updates are what you’d call ‘on the iterative side’.
The headlining feature is the introduction of AMOLED screens on both, meaning perfect contrast and deeper blacks. Both also come with a button on the side simply labelled “RUN” which may be taking usability to a farcical extreme.
The Forerunner 965 has grown a little, coming in at 1.4in rather than 1.3in like its predecessor. It has a fancy titanium bezel and will pack up to 31 hours of life in GPS mode if you really fancy running for that long. If you want to use it as a (very basic) smartwatch, it’ll go 23 days between charges.
The 265 gets a new feature — a couple of hand-me-downs from the Forerunner 955, which is always nice to see. You now get a touch screen and Training Readiness — which combines your recent exercise performance, sleep and resting time into a single metric advising you on how intensive your next run should be.
The Forerunner 265 is 46mm, but if that sounds too big there’s the Forerunner 265S, which is just 42mm. A dinkier frame does make for a smaller battery, though, and while you’ll get up to 24 hours of GPS and 15 days of smartwatch for the 265, that’s reduced to 20 hours and 13 days for the 265S.
The watches are amazingly available to order today in New Zealand, direct from Garmin itself. The Forerunner 965 will set you back NZ$1,199, while both flavours of Forerunner 265 will cost you NZ$899 — which seems a bit unfair on those with smaller wrists, but there we are.