Monthly Roundup – Late! October 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 October 2017…

Sorry sorry sorry I’ve been very busy with a new job! hopefully everything is covered here, corrections in comments please as I didn’t spend long looking this month. Hopefully next month I’ll get back to doing these in the first week of the month.

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Garmin Fenix 3 Fenix 3 HR, Quatix 3, D2 Bravo, Tactix Bravo This has been superceded.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 Released in January 2017 so this watch is not dated and will be very well supported throughout the next year (2018) at least. I’ve downgraded to amber purely because of speculation of a Fenix 5 Plus. Whether or not there is a “Plus”, there will be new Fenix models in January, including a Titanium one and new updated colours so be aware of that over the Xmas period. This is unlikely to be a complete new device though, so much like when the Fenix 3 went to Fenix 3 HR there will be minor incremental changes.
Garmin Fenix Chronos New, buy if you wear solid gold underpants. As with the Fenix 5 this may be replaced soon with minor changes, although as a premium model this may not be affected.
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) and has been sorta replaced with the FR30. Still cheap and capable though
Garmin Forerunner 30 released September 2017
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 announcement some time in October 2017 and shipping November 2017
Garmin Forerunner 735XT Buy if very 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 Don’t buy unless you get a good deal. This is still quite new but has been superceded by the Vivoactive 3 which seems to add a lot of things including wrist based payment. Not quite ready for a red grade yet, this is still a great watch
Garmin Vivoactive 3 Buy, this is just released in August 2017 so August 2019 is the probable replacement.
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 was overdue for replacement and very, very old for a current device (2014!) even when replaced in August 2017. This is cheap everywhere now, and still a good device but only a little cheaper than the Edge 1030.
Garmin Edge 1030 Finally arrived in August 2017. Likely replacement…2020! Although I can imagine a 2019 update so we’ll wait and see
Garmin Edge 1040 Keep calm and wait until 2020!
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. This watch is now so far behind the curve and so long overdue for replacement that Polar might have decided to exit the premium end of the market.
Polar v800.next v850 Overdue, expected announcement at…who knows! This watch is now so long overdue for replacement that Polar might have decided to exit the premium end of the market.
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). This device is now so long overdue for replacement that Polar might have decided to exit the premium end of the market.
Polar v650.next Overdue, expected announcement at…who knows! This device is now so long overdue for replacement that Polar might have decided to exit the premium end of the market.
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, HR, Baro Buy, just released. Be aware there may be more models coming. Suunto is dripping out many, many models
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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30 comments on “Monthly Roundup – Late! October 2017
  1. D says:

    Vivoactive 3 or 245/645, that is the question.

  2. Jacob Riis says:

    I personally still think the Garmin Forerunner 735XT should be yellow. Look at the price! It almost half the the price of the Garmin Forerunner 935!

    • lusty says:

      Price doesn’t count in those scores. The entire point is how “safe” the watch is from an update/replacement perspective. The FR735 was based on an already old platform as an interim measure while they tested the 935/Fenix 5 platform. This is a pattern with Garmin where they sometimes release a device to fill a gap before something newer and better is announced. The FR225 was a classic example which was almost immediately superceded and dropped. The FR735 has had good support but won’t get many of the new updates and CIQ versions.

  3. Adrián Míguez Sánchez says:

    Hi, I’ve started running trail running for 6 months, now I’m starting to want a sports watch and I have some doubts.

    In principle I am deciding between Polar M430 and Garmin 235 (or 245).

    My doubt arises around the 235, which happens once the 245 goes on sale, I have read in their publications that the old models are stopped giving support, well that supposes that, stop being practical that Smartwatch ?.

    I am trying to buy in Cibermonday´s day to save me a few euros, and I still do not know if I decide on the 235, wait for the 245 because I may have barometric altimeter or buy Polar M430.

    • lusty says:

      Support doesn’t stop overnight, but new versions of ConnectIQ may not be supported. The FR235 is still a great watch and will continue working for many years to come including notifications from your phone as a smartwatch. If it’s just for running also consider the VivoActive 3 and make sure you read the DCRainmaker reviews of all of them before buying. For trail running you may want to focus on something with a barometric altimeter as the up and down is often as important as the distance there.

  4. Sainttoff says:

    Will the 645 be out this year? Starting to get very impatient these days!!

  5. Pat says:

    I was expecting a 645 announcement this week, though based only on timing relative to Black Friday and Christmas (no inside info).

    FWIW, in one of today’s reviews (Epson ProSense) DCR mentioned that he doesn’t have any other “announcement-focused” watch posts coming this week. So 645 may not be announced until next week (or later). [https://www.dcrainmaker.com/2017/11/epsons-new-prosense-running-triathlon-gps-watches-everything-you-ever-wanted-to-know.html#comment-2602796]

  6. Rich says:

    Where is the Garmin Varia Vision in its life cycle? Any rumors of upgrades or new versions?

  7. JB says:

    Still nothing? No FR645 or 245? Also no leaks?

  8. Sainttoff says:

    Have a bad feeling garmin are going to wait till after xmas and let people buy the 235.

  9. Kim says:

    I see on some websites (ex idealo) that there are stores now offering the 235 for 215 / 218 euros which is a great drop…so probably it is an indicator that the 245 is finally coming?

  10. Rick says:

    Garmin has been making announcements for various new products and updates regularly on their website. They usually announce at 6:00 AM. They recently unveiled their newly redesigned Garmin Connect App. Next, they will most likely announce their CIQ 2.4 update, followed by the long awaited next versions to FR 235 & 630, named (i.e. 245 & 645??).

  11. Rick says:

    Note: Connect IQ 2.3.5 was made available prior to the launch of Descent Mk 1 dive watch. A Beta version of CIQ 2.4 was made available on Oct 18. This new version sounds like it has been updated to accomodate new apps that run more efficient, do cooler things, and are more reliable.

  12. Etojok says:

    When the 245 comes out, I expect the FR230 getting cheaper soon, e.g. on Cyberweek or other sales.
    I don’t need HR monitoring and a like the FR230, but would it make sense to buy a FR230 after it has been replaced, or woult it be out of support too quickly?

    • Rick says:

      I don’t know how long they will continue updates but… FR230 last software update to 7.50 was Sep 6/17. FR235 and FR630 have been receiving the same updates as FR230. More recently FR735 was updated Nov 9/17 and FR935 Nov 3/17, Fenix 3 Nov 15/17, Fenix 5 Sep 22/17. The last update for older FR220 Nov 17/14 and FR225 Dec 21/15.

  13. Marc says:

    DCR wrote in one of the comments “Certainly both the FR235/FR630 are slightly over-due for replacement, but even if we do see new watch announcements at CES, it’s historically often months till stock is available”

    That means that DCR doesn’t have the 645/245 yet for testing, which means intro most likely in 2018.

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