Garmin has announced updates to three of its most popular running watches. The Forerunner 35 will be succeeded by the Forerunner 45 and 45S, while the 235 will be replaced by the 245 and 245 Music. At the top of the Forerunner range, the 945 will take over from the 935.
The new Forerunner 45 and 45S watches cater for beginner runners and are the biggest update on their predecessor in terms of looks, changing the square design to a round one and adding colour to the screen. The 45S is slightly smaller than the 45 to better fit slimmer wrists.
Following in the footsteps of the hugely popular Forerunner 235 comes the 245, along with the 245 Music. The latter has space for 500 songs and the capacity to sync music from a Spotify premium account, while both watches offer more in-depth training analysis than the 235, including running dynamics (when paired with a foot pod), a wrist-based Pulse Ox sensor to keep tabs on the oxygen saturation of your blood and breadcrumb navigation.
The new top dog in the Forerunner range will be the 945, which takes all the features you’ll find in the outrageously expensive Garmin MARQ Athlete watch and puts them in a lighter – and far cheaper – plastic frame. It’s a sizeable update on the Forerunner 935, adding music storage and streaming, onboard maps, a Pulse Ox sensor and even more in-depth training data for runners and triathletes.
Garmin has shown admirable commitment to bringing features that were once restricted to its pricier models to the new watches, though this may make it harder for some to choose with many of the same features appearing on similarly-priced devices. We’d also anticipate some head-turning discounts on the models which are heading for the exit.
However, the Forerunner 45 is shaping up to be Garmin’s best budget watch; the Forerunner 245 Music, which offers a huge amount for under £300, is the pretender to the title of Garmin’s best-value running watch; and the 945 will be Garmin’s most feature-rich running and triathlon watch. We’ll find out if that proves the case in practice when we review the new watches in full.
All the new watches will be available in the second quarter of 2019, and you can sign up for updates on their release on the Garmin website. The Forerunner 45 and 45S will cost £169.99, the Forerunner 245 is £249.99 and the 245 Music £299.99, and the Forerunner 945 is £519.99.