Garmin Instinct GPS watch released

Garmin Instinct released

Garmin has announced the Garmin Instinct GPS watch which is billed as an outdoor watch with a rugged build, but is it lacking some of the key features to warrant the price tag?

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Looking at the watch it looks like a G-shock watch and with its build being made to a U.S. military standard 810G for thermal, shock and water resistance, but it looks very dated and stuck in the 80’s and leaves me thinking what is Garmin playing at in terms of its direction.

The features

Whilst the Garmin Instinct is halfway between a Vivoactive 3 and a Fenix 5,

  • Built-in 3-axis compass and barometric altimeter plus multiple global navigation satellite systems (GPS, GLONASS and Galileo) support helps track in more challenging environments than GPS alone
  • Its got a black and white screen, not colour?
  • Monitor your heart rate activity and stress; train with preloaded activity profiles
  • It has smart notifications just like most Garmin watches, but again not as useful as an Apple Watch.
  • It does have navigation features but only has the ability to navigate downloaded courses in breadcrumb trail.
  • Battery life: up to 14 days in smartwatch mode, up to 16 hours in GPS mode, up to 40 hours in UltraTrac™ battery saver mode

What it does not have

Whilst you do get a decent feature set, it does have some surprising emission’s

  • No colour screen, just black and white, I really don’t understand why.
  • NO CIQ support at all, really big surprise for me.
  • No Firstbeat like VO2max or running dynamics, cycling dynamics.
  • No STRAVA support
  • No golf course support or tracking
  • No WiFi support
  • Garmin PAY is missing, why would they do this
  • No Garmin Music, but this is no surprise because CIQ support is not on the watch.

Pricing and availability

The Garmin Instinct is available now prices $299.99/£269.99 and comes in a variety of different colours.Garmin Instinct


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Jon Ratcliffe
I have a huge passion for technology having worked in the sector for over 18 years in a variety of roles. I cover Wearables, tech and smart home. My reviews and information will talk about how the product works in reality and not just what the marketing departments want you to think.

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