If you’re not a fan of either the circular shape or the £300 price of the original Garmin Venu, we have good news – the company has launched a cheaper version of its sporty smartwatch. The Garmin Venu Sq costs from £180 and has a similar square design to devices like the Apple Watch, and the Fitbit Versa and Sense.
Two versions of the Venu Sq have launched: the basic version costs £179.99, while the Venu Sq music edition costs £229.99 and adds music storage and the ability to link up with streaming services including Spotify.
Garmin hasn’t brought anything new to the Venu Sq: it’s simply a version of the Venu that cuts a few features to keep the cost down, although we’re rather impressed by how little has actually been cut. There’s no barometric altimeter and the animated workouts to follow from your wrist aren’t present. The screen is also less impressive, being an LCD display as opposed to the brighter AMOLED screen on the Venu. The battery life on the Venu Sq is 14 hours of GPS versus 20 hours on the Venu, but in watch mode both are expected to last six days, so we don’t feel short-changed in that regard.
That’s all the major changes, though, and plenty of great features remain. The Venu Sq has built-in GPS (plus GLONASS and Galileo), a heart rate monitor, an SpO2 sensor to measure blood oxygen saturation, Garmin Pay for NFC payments, and the usual excellent sports and activity tracking we expect from Garmin. That includes the ability to create structured workouts or training plans from Garmin Coach to follow on your wrist.
While it doesn’t offer the same depth of training analysis as Garmin’s Forerunner and Fenix devices, the Venu Sq will outdo watches from Apple and Fitbit on this front. It might lack the polish and smarts of the Apple Watch SE or the Fitbit Versa 3, but among fitness smartwatches around the £200 mark, the premium sports tracking gives it an edge.
Buy from Garmin | From £179.99