Monthly Roundup – August 2017

Now a regular feature, here’s the round-up of recommendations so everything is in one place, and so we have a nice record of speculations updated for August2017…

So this month we’ll be getting at least one new Garmin hopefully (Edge 1030) perhaps more (Forerunner 245 and 645). We may also see a Polar v800 replacement but that’s more likely next month or October. Last month I added TomTom as they were getting really popular and are great value devices with good functionality. TomTom then promptly told the world they may close the division. It’s a pity, that means that I can’t recommend them since recommendations here are purely down to the expected future of the device and not how good it is. Shame.

In alphabetical order of manufacturer.

Manufacturer Device Current Speculation
Garmin Fenix Don’t buy – this is very old
Garmin Fenix 2 Don’t buy – Fenix 3 is now cheap and Fenix 4 is due imminently
Garmin Fenix 3 Fenix 3 HR, Quatix 3, D2 Bravo, Tactix Bravo This has been superceded. It’s been a while since the Fenix 5 came out and this is still amber because it’s actually still reasonably supported and doesn’t need much fuctionality so offers great value if you don’t need the latest shiny thing.
Garmin Fenix 5 Brand new (January 2017), although pricey. This looks to be an updated Fenix 3 firmware so the usual “don’t buy Garmin until 6 months in” shouldn’t apply in theory, as most of the code is already tried and tested.

There will be new Fenix models in January, including a Titanium one so be aware of that over the Xmas period.

Garmin Fenix Chronos New, buy if you wear solid gold underpants. Garmin have seemingly aligned the firmware for the Fenix, Chronos and 935 now with bugs and features being consistently addressed accross all at the same time. This makes me feel more confident that the Chronos won’t be killed off early so it’s now a green flag here.
Garmin Forerunner 910XT Don’t buy – this is very old
Garmin Forerunner 920XT Has now been replaced, but this is a very capable and mature device (October 2014). If it’s cheap I’d certainly get one.
Garmin Forerunner 935 Has arrived at last (March 2017) so is fresh and good to buy. Uses Fenix 5 firmware so pretty safe from bugs.
Garmin Forerunner 25 This has been out a while (August 2015) but nothing obvious seems planned in the near future. August 2017 would be the soonest we’d expect a replacement.
Garmin Forerunner 35 Buy – this is still fairly new (September 2016). September 2018 would be the soonest we’d expect a replacement.
Garmin Forerunner 210 Don’t buy, this is very old (2010)
Garmin Forerunner 220 Don’t buy, this is very old (2013)
Garmin Forerunner 230 Don’t Buy – this is still fairly new but is already on the “previous models” (aka “dead to me”) page at Garmin. October 2017 is the soonest we’d expect replacement but optical HR rules the roost now so this probably won’t be replaced
Garmin Forerunner 225 Don’t buy. Garmin immediately replaced this with the 235 using their own sensor.
Garmin Forerunner 235 Wait. Garmin have started teasing about a device which is almost certainly the 245 and 645 already.
Garmin Forerunner 245 Likely coming soon to launch alongside the Forerunner 645. August-October 2017. Expect this to be similar to Approach S60 hardware.
Garmin Forerunner 610 Don’t buy, this is very old (2011)
Garmin Forerunner 620 Don’t buy, this is very old (2013)
Garmin Forerunner 630 Don’t Buy – this is still fairly new but is already on the “previous models” (aka “dead to me”) page at Garmin. October 2017 is the soonest we’d normally expect replacement. With the release of the touchscreen Approach S60 it’s likely the Forerunner 645 will come sooner rather than later since they will probably share a hardware platform
Garmin Forerunner 645 With the release of the touchscreen Approach S60 it’s likely the Forerunner 645 will come sooner rather than later since they will probably share a hardware platform. Expect this some time in August-October 2017
Garmin Forerunner 735XT Buy if cheap – this is fairly new (May 2016). If it’s cheaper than the FR935 then great, otherwise definitely go for the FR935. May 2018 is the earliest we’d expect replacement but with the Forerunner 935 in the mix it may be dropped as it was an interim solution using FR235 hardware before F5 hardware was finalised.
Garmin Epix Don’t buy. This experimental watch led to the Fenix 5X but firmware updates have all but stopped on this device despite numerous bugs
Garmin Epix 2 Abandoned, the Epix has been replaced by Fenix 5X
Garmin Vivoactive Replaced by the Vivoactive HR and on the “previous models” (aka “dead to me”) page at Garmin.
Garmin Vivoactive HR Buy, this is still quite new. February 2018 is the soonest we’d expect a replacement
Garmin Vivoactive 3 some rumors of a new device here so we may see something before Christmas 2017
Garmin Edge 20 Buy, this is current, although may be replaced around June 2017. Given that we’re still waiting on the Edge 10×0 the Edge30 is more likely to be 2018
Garmin Edge 25 Buy, this is current, although may be replaced around June 2017. Given that we’re still waiting on the Edge 10×0 the Edge35 is more likely to be 2018
Garmin Edge 200 Don’t buy, this is very old (2011)
Garmin Edge 500 Don’t buy, this is very old (2009)
Garmin Edge 510 Don’t buy, this is very old (2013)
Garmin Edge 520 Buy, this is current, although may be replaced around July 2017. Given that we’re still waiting on the Edge 1010 the Edge530 is more likely to be 2018 so don’t hold out for a new one this year.
Garmin Edge 800 Don’t buy, this is very old (2010)
Garmin Edge 810 Don’t buy, this is very old (2013)
Garmin Edge 820 Buy, this is quite new. July 2018 is the earliest we’d expect replacement although 2019 more likely
Garmin Edge 1000 Buy if you get a really good deal, this is overdue for replacement and very, very old for a current device (2014!). Expect the replacement sometime this summer, probably April 2017. This is cheap everywhere now though, and still a good device.
Garmin Edge 1010 or Edge 1030 Coming this month, pictures have been leaked and it’s on the FCC website
Polar v800 Wait – update is probably imminent. This watch is very, very old for a current watch (2014!). The M400 was just updated and that was launched near the v800.
Polar v800.next v850 Overdue, expected announcement at…who knows! H7i Sensor has been leaked which is likely to be packaged with this watch.

Possibly at Kona?

Polar M200 Buy, this is just released (Oct 2016)
Polar m400 Finally updated. This is a very old watch for a current model (2014) but is very cheap and still works well.
Polar m430 Launched April 2017 and based on M400 so shouldn’t be buggy, a definite safe buy
Polar M600 Buy, this is new (Aug 2016) and was updated with new Androidwear in 2017 so definitely supported well
Polar M450 Replaced with….identical hardware and a new firmware. Normally I’d say buy if cheap, but Polar abandoned this for no reason so buyer beware.
Polar M460 Launched April 2017 this is M450 hardware with new firmware. Given the treatment of M450 owners I’d say be careful buying this. Yup, Amber warning for a “brand new” device. That’s a first for me.
Polar v650 Wait, this is very old for a current model and overdue for replacement (Jan 2014)
Polar v650.next overdue for replacement, expected late 2017
Suunto Ambit Don’t buy this is very old (2012)
Suunto Ambit 2 Don’t buy unless you need Ant+, this is very old (2013)
Suunto Ambit 3 Don’t’ buy, this is very old (2014)
Suunto Ambit 4 Officially not going to happen, Spartan Series has replaced Ambit
Suunto Spartan Ultra Buy, just released (Jun 2016). Be aware there may be more models coming
Suunto Spartan Sport Buy, just released. Be aware there may be more models coming
Suunto Spartan Trainer Announcing shortly, just leaked. Be aware there may be more models coming
Suunto Kailash Buy if you can work out what it’s for or who it’s aimed at
Suunto Traverse Why Suunto, WHY!?
TomTom Multisport Launched April 2013, available July 2013 older watch probably best not to buy. Replaced by newer runner models
TomTom Multisport Cardio Launched April 2014, available April 2014 older watch probably best not to buy. Replaced by newer runner models
TomTom Runner Launched April 2013, available July 2013 older watch probably best not to buy. Superceded
TomTom Runner Cardio Launched April 2014, available April 2014 older watch probably best not to buy. Superceded
TomTom Spark (Runner 2) Launched September 2015, available October 2015 2 years old so buy if a good deal but has been superceded by Spark/Runner 3

TomTom have just announced they may exit this market so beware!

TomTom Spark 3/Runner 3 Launched September 2016, available September 2016 one year old so relatively safe, although TomTom seem to have a yearly cadence so expect announcement in September 2017

TomTom have just announced they may exit this market so beware!

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8 comments on “Monthly Roundup – August 2017
  1. Tom GR says:

    I want to replace my forerunner 10 and will spend less than $200. My thoughts are

    Fr25: cheapest option
    Fr35: hr, longer battery life, bike support
    Fr230: longest battery, better satellite sync?

    Two questions: is there much difference in how these sync up to satellites? Sometimes the 10 is slow, especially if i start running before it syncs.

    And you have a “dont buy” on 230, but a replacement would be over my budget, so would this still be reasonable? Or is it too old and 35 is better at this point?

    • lusty says:

      For your purposes DCRainmaker is possibly the better site. My recommendation is purely to prevent you buying a device a week before it’s replaced and then getting disappointed when a new one is released. These older watches are as good today as they ever were and as you point out are cheaper than ever. Use his comparison calculator to compare features between the ones in your budget and go for the one you prefer 🙂

  2. I know it’s almost time for the September update so here are some addons/things to fix.
    Polar, the H7i Sensor is the H10 and Polar has stated the next highend watch will be begin 2018
    Garmin, tha Samsung SmartThings CIG app has support for the FR645, Fenix 5s plus, Fenix 5 plus and Fenix 5X plus. (screenshots available if needed)
    (other priorities at the moment so no personal site update)

  3. No 935 plus on the list.
    And the Garmin statement (partly quote) about Galileo is: “… Many of our products are able to receive the Galileo signal. Now that the Galileo system has reached its initial operational capability, we will test our Galileo-enabled products carefully and provide Galileo updates for later models… “

  4. tfk says:

    they have had an aggressive policy of new product releases this year as you know. one almost every month or so. the ‘current’ announcement is for the OH1 which, whilst I think it’s great, isn’t going to set the Christmas tree lights on fire. The v800 was self-leaked by polar to be next year so that doesn’t leave much to announce for sept/oct. except ‘you know what’.

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