Just in time for World Running Day, Garmin is introducing two new running watches to the Forerunner lineup: the $349.99 Forerunner 255 and the $499.99 Forerunner 955. The Forerunner 955 will also come in a Solar version, which, as the name suggests, adds solar charging for extended battery life.
The Forerunner 255 is a lightweight, mid-range running watch based on Major 245. It will come in two sizes. The standard Forerunner 255 will measure 46mm and weigh 49g, while the smaller 255S will measure 41mm and weigh 32g. There will also be the Forerunner 255 Music and 255S Music variants, which will be able to store up to 500 songs on the watch itself. Garmin says that also includes playlists from Spotify, Amazon Music, and Deezer. Music models will cost an additional $50 for a total of $399.99. The watches are rated as 5ATM water resistant with an estimated battery life of 14 days, with up to 30 hours in GPS mode.
Big additions this time around include a new racing widget, heart rate variance (HRV) sleep mode, multi-band GPS, and the ability to switch between sports more easily by pressing a single button. The race widget will include race preparation information, including performance forecasts, race day weather and a countdown clock. Multi-band GPS is an increasingly popular feature in multisport watches that enhances GPS accuracy by enabling connectivity Multiple satellite frequencies. The promise is better accuracy in environments where it is difficult to get a good signal. Finally, the watch also features a “Morning Report” feature. When the user wakes up, the watch will provide a short summary of the day’s weather, daily workout suggestion, last night’s sleep report, recovery time, training status and HRV status.
Compared to the Forerunner 245, the 255 lineup adds an NFC chip for Garmin Pay. Otherwise, it is not very different in terms of the sensor. It still features continuous heart rate monitoring as well as SpO2 sensors to enable features like Body Battery. The scale measures how well you recover during sleep as well as how “drained” you are during the day from stress. The Forerunner 255 series will also support basic smartwatch features such as push notifications and Garmin security features such as accident detection and live tracking. For training features, it will also give users daily workout suggestions as well as access to training programs via Garmin Coach and in-depth metrics on the Garmin Connect app.
Meanwhile, the Forerunner 955 is more of a top-notch running watch. (Although it’s not quite as fully-featured as Garmin’s flagship Fenix series.) It has a 47mm always-on touchscreen in full color and weighs 52 grams. However, button lovers don’t have to worry. The 955 still has five physical buttons that can be used in conjunction with the touch screen. Like the 255 series, it’s rated 5ATM water resistant but has a slightly longer battery life of an estimated 15 days, with 42 hours in GPS mode. There’s also the $599.99 Forerunner 955 Solar, which features Garmin’s own Power Glass lens. With solar charging, the 955 Solar gets up to 20 days on a single charge, with 49 hours in GPS mode. (This assumes you’re getting about three hours a day in the case of 50,000 lux, so take that with a pinch of salt.)
Like the Forerunner 255 series, the Forerunner 955 also gets multi-band GPS, HRV status, morning reports and a new race instrument. It also has a new measure of readiness for training. As the name suggests, the scale takes into account sleep, recovery time, HRV, and a few other metrics to give users a score indicating how “ready” they are for a training session. It also adds real-time stamina tracking, first introduced by Garmin Fenix 7 . series.
In terms of health tracking and smart features, the Forerunner 955 has the same basic features as the 255. However, it does add some additional training metrics, like the PacePro and ClimbPro, which provide real-time guidance on your pace and elevation. You can also store more songs on 955-2000 to be exact.
The Forerunner 255 and Forerunner 955 are both available starting today. The Forerunner 255 is available in four colors: grey, pink, blue and black. Meanwhile, the Forerunner 955 is available in white and black.