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Garmin Fenix 7 & EPIX 2 will reportedly be able to take ECG readings

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Some more information has come through on the upcoming Garmin Fenix 7 and Epix 2 sports watches. Both will apparently be able to take ECG (EKG) measurements.

Once again, the information comes from winfuture.de. To remind, a few weeks ago they posted what they claim are actual images of the Garmin Fenix 7 and EPIX 2. Both are expected to launch in the weeks ahead.

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The company is attending CES 2022 and has already announced the Venu 2 Plus. The gathering concludes on Saturday so it is probably a safe bet it won’t be making any new announcements before the end of the show. Garmin typically has product releases on Tuesdays, so the dates to keep an eye on are January 11th and January 18th.


Finally a Garmin that can take ECG

A number of wearable tech brands has already released smartwatches and fitness bands that can take an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG as it is also known) from the wrist. This is a measurement of the health of your heart’s rhythm and electrical activity. The tech is often used to diagnose symptoms of a possible heart problem, such as arrhythmias, coronary heart disease and more.

Garmin has been behind the curve on this one. But we knew it had this type of functionality in development thanks to a Clinical Trial conducted earlier this year. This clearly stated that the single-lead ECG device that was used for the study is a Garmin “wrist-worn, consumer device”. Single lead data is what is typically derived from smartwatches with ECG technology.

In that sense we weren’t that surprised at the news a Garmin watch with ECG might be around the corner. What is more surprising is the choice. We would have expected this on an all-purpose device such as the Vivoactive 4 or Venu. But, if the winfuture.de story is to be believed, it looks like ECG might make its debut on the Fenix 7 and EPIX 2. These are sports watches for athletes and adventurers, hence the surprise.


Fenix 7, EPIX 2 – technical specs

The new information the German site released today is to do with specs. Images of Fenix 7 and EPIX 2 can be found in our earlier piece.

The table below shows the claimed technical characteristics of the various Fenix 7 variants and EPIX 2. Solar models info can be found in brackets.

Fenix 7 (solar)
Fenix 7X (solar)
Fenix 7s (solar)
Epix 2
Display type
Transflective MIP LCD touch, Reinforced Glass (Power Glass)
Transflective MIP LCD touch, Reinforced Glass (Power Glass)
Transflective MIP LCD touch, Reinforced Glass, (Power Glass)
AMOLED Touch
Display size
1.3 inch
1.4 inch
1.2 inch
1.3 inch
Display resolution
260 x 260 pixels
280 x 280 pixels
240 x 240 pixels
454 x 454 pixels
Diameter
47mm
51mm
42mm
47mm
Functions
Distance, altimeter, ECG heart rate measurement, speed/RPM, speed, heart rate zones, number of steps, stress level, sleep duration, levels, quality, recovery time, calorie consumption
Distance, altimeter, ECG heart rate measurement, speed/RPM, speed, heart rate zones, number of steps, stress level, sleep duration, levels, quality, recovery time, calorie consumption
Distance, altimeter, ECG heart rate measurement, speed/RPM, speed, heart rate zones, number of steps, stress level, sleep duration, levels, quality, recovery time, calorie consumption
Distance, altimeter, ECG heart rate measurement, speed/RPM, speed, heart rate zones, number of steps, stress level, sleep duration, levels, quality, recovery time, calorie consumption
GPS
Yes (GLONASS, GPS, Galileo)
Yes (GLONASS, GPS, Galileo)
Yes (GLONASS, GPS, Galileo)
Yes (GLONASS, GPS, Galileo)
Compass
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Connectivity
WLAN, BT, ANT+
WLAN, BT, ANT+
WLAN, BT, ANT+
WLAN, BT, ANT+
Water-resistance
10 ATM
10 ATM
10 ATM
10 ATM
Battery life
Smartwatch: up to 18 days (22 days with solar); GPS only: 57 hours (73 hours with solar); Expedition GPS: up to 40 days (74 days with solar).
Smartwatch: up to 28 days (37 days with solar); GPS only: 89 hours (122 hours with solar); Expedition GPS: 62 days (139 days with solar).
Smartwatch: up to 11 days (14 days with solar); GPS only: 37 hours (46 hours with solar); Expedition GPS: 26 days (43 days with solar).
Smartwatch: up to 16 days; GPS mode: up to 42 hours.
Material
Case stainless steel (PVD), silicone bracelet
Case stainless steel (PVD), silicone bracelet
Case stainless steel (PVD), silicone bracelet
Case stainless steel, silicone bracelet
Weight
79 grams
96 grams
63 grams
76 grams

Solar or touchscreen but not both

As can be seen from the above, the EPIX 2 is pretty much the same as the mid-range Fenix 7. The main difference is the AMOLED display which comes with a much higher resolution than the MIP that can be found on the Fenix line. But it lacks the solar option that is available for the three Fenix 7 watches.

What jumps out is the battery life on EPIX 2. Up to 16 days for something with an AMOLED display is pretty good. It will be interesting to see how long the watch can keep going with always-on display option. We’re guessing four or perhaps five.

Solar is also getting a boost. The ring is on these models is said to be bigger than before. Hence they can increase battery life by 9 days on Fenix 7X (versus 3 days on 6x).

According to the German site, the ECG functionality will be available for both Fenix 7 and EPIX 2. We were speculating on the function of the red physical button on the top right in the leaked press renders. This has been completely redesigned and the outer edge is knurled. Whether this is for a rotating crown or ECG remains to be seen. The metal around the button could be a contact point for taking an ECG reading.

Another new bit of info is that all models will have touch displays. Apart from the solar models, that is. So you can have a touchscreen or solar but not both.

What we’ve heard is that you’ll be able to navigate the touch-enabled watches via the button or display. But when you start an activity, you can only interact with the physical buttons. It is also very likely Garmin will allow users to completely disable the touchscreen functionality as not all will want it. But one can see a touchscreen as useful for system navigation and map usage.

Of course, none of this has been confirmed or denied by Garmin. Winfuture.de site has not cited their source so take all of this with a pinch of salt.

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One thought on “Garmin Fenix 7 & EPIX 2 will reportedly be able to take ECG readings

  • Fenix 7X (solar) – my choice

    Reply

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