The first detailed information and images of the upcoming Garmin Forerunner 965 and 265 watches have been leaked by a US retailer. The AMOLED display, as expected, appears to be the most significant upgrade. There are also some other design enhancements and other bits and pieces.
First for the disclaimer. The accuracy of the information in this article is uncertain because there is no way to verify that the information source is genuine. It is just a retailer. The images, in particular, appear to be low resolution. So take everything with a grain of salt. However, it makes for interesting reading.
The Garmin Forerunner line of GPS running watches is well-known for its accuracy and versatility. The display screen is a key feature of these watches. The screens on the Forerunner range in size from 1.2 inches on the low end watches to 1.3 inches on the Forerunner 955. Memory-in-Pixel (MIP) screens are easy to read, even in bright sunlight, and have a high-resolution display that shows clear, crisp information about your activity.
Both the new watches are apparently getting a snazzy AMOLED display. That’s a first for a Forerunner. As expected, the difference is something akin to the Fenix 7 and Epix 2 range.
AMOLED displays on smartwatches offer several benefits, including high contrast, vibrant colors, and deep blacks. They also have a fast refresh rate, which enhances the overall user experience by providing smooth and fluid animations and transitions.
Garmin Forerunner 965
The 965’s AMOLED display reportedly measures 1.4 inches. As a result, it will be larger than the 1.3 inch one found on the 955. And bigger even than the screen on Epix 2.
This should really bring the full-colour, built-in maps to life. It is not specified in the listing, but we believe the case size will remain unchanged at 46mm, as the 955 has a rather thick bezel. So there’s ample room to bump up the screen size by 0.1 inches. Or perhaps there has been a slight increase in case size.
The screen will be touch-enabled and the button controls will remain the same. Another design enhancement is the lightweight titanium bezel and dual-colour bands that come with the device.
In terms of battery life, the 965 lasts 23 days in smartwatch mode and up to 31 hours in GPS-only mode. That’s quite impressive, as it’s much longer than the Forerunner 955’s smartwatch mode’s 15 days between charges. However, it is less than its 42 hours in GPS mode.
There don’t appear to be many other differences from the predecessor device based on the specs listed by the retailer. Multiple sport profiles, Training Readiness and other detailed performance metrics, wrist-based running power, safety and tracking features, Garmin Pay, and music on the go (8 GB of internal memory), are all included. Satellite connectivity is multi-band GPS, as it is on the 955.
Wrist based runnning dynamics?
Interestingly, the retailer mentions “wrist-based running dynamics”. In addition to running power the watch is able to spit out ground contact time balance, stride length and more. It is the type of info you currently get from the Garmin Running Dynamics Pod. That is new functionality if the info turns out to be accurate.
It does sound plausible. The Apple Watch has running dynamics from the wrist. One would hope the feature would trickle down to existing Garmin devices via firmware updates.
No mention of the recently launched ECG feature of the Venu 2 Plus. So it seems this is not coming to the 965.
Here’s the single image of the 965. We can not vouch whether this has been photoshopped as it is super low res. This actually appears to be taken off a PDF. So perhaps the information the Texas retailer has posted comes from some type of promotional material. The image below is hosted on the retailer’s website. So if it disappears from this article, it means the retailer has removed it. What is noticeable is that the bezel around the edges is smaller than on the 955.
As reported before, the 965 comes in a choice between Black/Powder Grey, Whitestone/Powder Grey and Amp Yellow/Black options. It will cost $599.99 when it becomes available. Our guess, in the next few weeks.
Forerunner 265 and 265s
As far as the 265, that one gets a bigger upgrade when compared to its predecessor. That’s because the 255 does not have Training Readiness and the 265 apparently does.
This is a metric that will assist you in maximizing training efficiency. It tells you whether you’re ready to get the most out of your workout. Sleep quality, sleep history, recovery time, acute training load, HRV status, and stress history all contribute to the score.
However, you will miss out on some of the 965’s sport profiles and built-in Maps. In terms of other features, the watch includes the above mentioned wrist-based running dynamics, multi-band GPS and more. Unlike the 255, music comes by default on the 265 so there is no non-music option.
Essential reading: Top fitness trackers and health gadgets
The size of the AMOLED display on the 265 is not listed but you will get a choice between 46mm and 42mm cases (265s), along with a few dual-coloured band options. So that probably means the large watch gets a 1.4 (or 1.3) inch display and the small one a 1.2 inch display. To remind, the 255 is offered in 46mm and 41mm case sizes.
The battery lasts 13 days in smartwatch mode and up to 20 hours in GPS only mode. The retailer appears to have made a mistake, quoting 15 days in smartwatch mode and 24 hours in GPS-only mode for the 265s. That cannot be correct. Perhaps they shifted the expected battery life between the 265 and 265s models.
Once again, there’s only one rather small, low res image of the upcoming device. Make of it what you will.
The final bit of info is that watches in the 265 range cost $449.99 and come in a few different colour options. This includes Black/Powder Gray, Whitestone/Tidal Blue, Aqua/Black, Black/Amp Yellow, Whitestone/Neo Tropic and Light Pink/Whitestone.
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