News – Vantage Update

Polar have released the December update for the Vantage watches (both get the update). I’ve yet to test it, but I have installed it without problems over Bluetooth from the app. Are you listening Suunto? Wireless without a PC, app or cable; like magic! Nothing like the 1990’s Spartan experience at all. It did take…many minutes. Enough minutes to legitimately be referred to as a fraction of an hour. Maybe even a quarter of an hour. I can certainly confirm that “timers” are there. Like a 1980’s Casio. Progress.

I’ll now have to do a bunch of exercise to see what’s changed and what’s new or better so please bear with me for a week or so! Looking at the list though, they seem to have fixed (almost) all of the issues I’ve reported. They don’t mention the one where previous activity types affect current activity but we can hope! Weird that they couldn’t have mentioned these bugs when I logged a ticket. If you’re coding a solution to a known bug, DON’T TELL CUSTOMERS TO RESET THEIR WATCH. Resetting a watch is a terrible way to fix code errors since the code remains the same and you just look dumb. Sorry Polar, you look dumb here. Just tell the customer it’s a known bug and is being worked on, we’re grownups we can handle that. We can also accept updates coming more often to just fix bugs too FYI…

Anyway, looks like my orange Vantage V strap for xmas won’t need to be sent back to Santa after all. Not that I know what’s in Santa’s sack, of course 😉

Official update notice is here

Version number: 2.0.7

Release date: December 12th, 2018

Improvements/fixes in this release:

  • Stopwatch, countdown timer and interval timer
  • Button and touch lock
  • Brighter backlight when looking at the display during training
  • Speed sensitivity improved (faster reaction to changes in speed)
  • Fixes for cases where distance is missing from the beginning of a session
  • Fixes for cadence from the wrist 
  • Fixes for pool swimming distance. Most of the issues with units when swimming also fixed
  • Some oopses fixed
  • Some touch UI freezes fixed


  1. Accurate GPS. They did some bugfixes. I‘m still impressed by the features. If they keep doing such good updates Like promised this watch is my favorite watch (I have a Suunto spartan and Garmin 935, too).

  2. Looking forward to your next update. Is it better than the v800 now or they still need a few months of head scratching before they are done?

    • I did a run today and it seemed to all work mostly as expected. GPS took a looooong time to get signal and the track was pretty poor but the new firmware seems better so far. The track on my Fenix 5+ was also quite poor though (I was holding that in my hand). My new Suunto 9 seemed to get a much better track on the left wrist but I suspect more out of coincidence than anything.

  3. How is it possible that this device seemed to be in development for so long but gets released with issues that make it seem like it wasn’t properly tested before, let alone the missing features that are advertised nonetheless?
    If I understood correctly DC Rainmaker’s presentation of the new Vantage series after the public announcement event Polar held, he said that Polar intended the red LEDS to be in the watch for more precise readouts but later saw that they don’t add improvement and omitted their use because it’s not worth the battery drain? Is this true? Are the red LEDS in the hardware but don’t get used? This is hard to believe.

    • No the reds are on, it’s the 10th LED in orange they disabled. The reality is that wrist based HR is great for all day monitoring of calories but not for sport. It’s certainly convenient, but I wouldn’t trust it. I do like being able to get HR while swimming without a strap, that’s quite useful and I don’t need huge accuracy when swimming just an idea of relative effort for the pace.
      I agree about the testing though. Some pretty obvious and consistent flaws got through. I want to see Polar reduce the length of their sprints and become much more agile with releases. As it stands these bugs are in the limelight for months with no comments from Polar. Garmin still have bugs but at least these days there’s a more open channel with customers and fast consistent releases.

      • “the 10th LED in orange they disabled”

        That still sounds a lot like rushing for production while planning and testing wasn’t carried out properly. With software you can do that (even if it’s bad practice) but not with hardware.
        I wonder what Polar was doing for so long?
        The Vantage V runs much more energy efficient than competing watches while being less bulky; maybe that was their focal point during development and less resources were allocated to testing the optical sensor, and even less to the software? Does that sound plausible? I don’t know.

        • Sounds plausable to me. The problem I have with that is that every change from here on out will reduce battery life in my opinion. They got good headlines at launch with battery life because the backlight was turned way down and the screen is almost all black. Roll forwards a year and they are “forced” to make changes by customers demanding a readable display and suddenly your battery life is cut in half. Dial up the GPS a little and you lose some more.
          It’s a really nice watch though. If they reduce the battery life to 10 hours of GPS (unlikely to get that bad!) I’m still happy. The number of people genuinely needing 40 hours is minimal. For an iron man you’d maybe want 24 to be on the safe side. We just need everything to work, better comms, and faster iteration of firmware and Polar might make a comeback. They certainly have a fan base, I get way more comments about Polar than Garmin here.

  4. I wish they can add ‘alarm’ to ‘quick menu’ as it was in V800. It’s not efficient to setup an alarm every day going through all menus.

    I have reported it as possible feature and… did not even get a response ‘thx for submitting’, hence don’t know if anybody will look on it.

    Let’s see 🙂

    • Do you need a different alarm every day? I use a weekday alarm (on my phone) so don’t really set alarms often as it just goes off every morning at 7am except weekends

  5. Hi, someone noticed that after updating to v.2.0.7 while running, if I made manual laps, the distance and pace of those laps is empty? Of course, that info is only available into flow (I don´t understand why it was available into the old V800 and into the vantage is missing).
    About the battery drain, I don´t think to develop to disable the automatic blacklight is too difficult…
    And the gps accuracy is not good enough!

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