Image source: Garmin

Garmin Fenix 8 release date: Rumors, features & what to expect

The most recent Fenix iteration made its debut in May of 2023. So not too long ago. But that shouldn’t stop us from anticipating the Garmin Fenix 8, looking at rumours, leaks fetures and possible release date.

Over the years, the Garmin Fenix series has become a favourite among sports and outdoor enthusiasts. This is an excellent wearable with most of the features you’d want for fitness training, workouts as well as feature sets for outdoor navigation. A device for those who participate in multiple sports and want to track absolutely everything.

Essential reading: Garmin Forerunner 955 vs Fenix 7 vs Epix 2 – which to go for?

Garmin has had a few interesting launches in 2023, the most recent being Venu 3 and Vivoactive 5. In early 2024 we saw the debut of Lily 2. But many are looking beyond those and wondering when we’ll see the Garmin Fenix 8. The competition is stiff, so it’s a fair bet that the company will set its goals high once again. There have been few rumors and zero leaks so far, so these are our predictions.

Jump to

Anticipated release date
How much will the Garmin Fenix 8 cost?
Possible design and tech specs
Functionality we expect, would like to see

When is the Garmin Fenix 8 being released?

Garmin Fenix 8
Image source: Garmin

Fenix 7 was announced at the start of 2022 and made available for purchase towards the end of January. In the summer of 2023 we saw the Pro version. But what about the earlier iterations in the series?

Here is the list by official release date of recent editions:

  • Garmin Fenix 3 (January 2015)
  • Garmin Fenix 3 (January 2016)
  • Garmin Fenix 5 (January 2017)
  • Garmin Fenix 5 Plus (June 2018)
  • Garmin Fenix 6 (September 2019)
  • Garmin Fenix 7 (January 2022)
  • Garmin Fenix 7 Pro (May 2023)

This shows that there has been a bit of a gap between generations six and seven. But the circumstances were not normal. The coronavirus situation in recent years, coupled with chip-shortages and an energy crisis in certain Asian countries, have not made things easy for wearable manufacturers. We actually think the Fenix 7 was scheduled to be released in 2021 but was delayed due to the situation.

Right now, it is looking like the summer or late spring of 2024 is most likely when the Fenix 8 will come out.

How much will the Garmin Fenix 8 cost?

Prepare to be disappointed if you decided to skip Fenix 7 line because it is far too expensive for you. After all, this is a high-end watch, so the Fenix 8 is likely to be priced similarly.

Nonetheless, we should see different price points for different sizes once again. Along with the standard, slightly less expensive models, there are premium and limited editions that are significantly more expensive. The Fenix 7 models start at $650 for the standard variant, $800 for the Sapphire Solar Edition and the Pro Solar. The Fenix 7 Pro Sapphire starts at $900. We certainly don’t expect the Fenix 8 line to be any cheaper.

Whatever the final price, the Fenix 8 will be a great choice as it will still be one of the best smartwatches for fitness fanatics. And we suspect, the legion of existing Fenix users will remain loyal to the timepiece, which has already proven its worth.

Garmin Fenix 8: Possible design and tech specs

Garmin Fenix 8
Image source: Garmin

Despite multiple generations, Garmin has kept the Fenix line’s flagship design fairly consistent. In recent years, the circular display and the five physical buttons have consistently made the cut. However, some changes have occurred along the way.

One of these is the addition of size options, ensuring that there is something for everyone. This is likely to continue with the next generation, with Garmin reintroducing three different-sized options. The same choice was retained for the Fenix 7 Pro.

In 2022 we also saw the introduction of Garmin Epix Gen 2. The watch is nearly identical to the Fenix 7, with one notable exception: it has an AMOLED display.

A slimmer form factor?

One thing we’d like to see with the Fenix 8 is a slimmer form factor.The device is currently quite thick. This ranges from 14.1mm to 14.9mm, depending on the size chosen. Whether we see a less chunky Fenix 8 really depends on how much it would affect battery life. A smaller physical space can fit a smaller battery.

The mid-sized Fenix 7 runs an impressive 18 days (22 days with solar) in smartwatch mode and 57 hours (73 hours with solar) with GPS switched on. The 7S and 7X also perform well on this count. Garmin is unlikely to downsize the battery capacity as it remains a very important selling point.

A study published in the journal “JMIR” found that smartwatch battery life is a major concern for users. The study also found that users are willing to trade off some features for longer battery life.

A higher-resolution screen?

The same consideration applies to the possible introduction of a higher-resolution screen. Having said that, one could reasonably expect the same or a similar type of MIP display, but with more pixels squeezed in. So something easier on the eye.

What we like about the recent editions is the addition of touchscreen functionality. Garmin has, quite rightly, opted to retain the two physical buttons on the right and three on the left. But now you can use this in combination with the touch display to navigate the menus. Best of all, this is customizable, so you can turn the touch sensitive display on or off depending on your needs. Perfect.

A decision to offer just a touch screen would not have been a good one. It would not be practical because athletes would find a touchscreen difficult to use in wet weather or when swimming.

Garmin appears to be adapting a similar design across its latest crop of sports watches, so it is unlikely to stray very much from that. Why change something that works? We, therefore, don’t expect to see any drastic changes in the looks department with the Fenix 8.

In any case, expect to see different-sized models, including some premium editions. and lots of options in straps, colors, and watch faces.

Garmin Fenix 8: Functionality we expect, would like to see

Garmin Fenix 8
Image source: Garmin

The Fenix 7 line is an excellent multisport GPS watch. Whatever you are into, the device will be able to keep track of it. In addition to wrist-based heart rate monitoring, the watch offers advanced running metrics and outdoor navigation. Finally, while not the most user-friendly, the Garmin Connect software is excellent, whether using the smartphone app or the more comprehensive web dashboard.

Essential readingTop fitness trackers and health gadgets

We have always been impressed with the Fenix model, and iteration number seven has brought some nice upgrades. This includes the addition of a touchscreen, a better GPS chip, and battery life enhancements. The gap is not huge, and these are expensive features if they are the only reason to upgrade.

The 7 Pro, on the other hand, brought the addition of a more up to date heart rate tech, ECG sensor and a built-in flashlight. A recent software update has added nightly skin temperature tracking to this list.

What follows are improvements we would like to see in the next iteration.

More training metrics

A study published in the journal “Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise” found that smartwatches can be an effective tool for tracking training metrics,such as heart rate, pace, and distance. The study also found that using a smartwatch can help users to improve their training performance.

The Fenix 7 range has lots of training metrics. As far as what else will be added on, that is difficult to predict at this stage. Recovery was one area where Garmin has lagged in recent years as compared to the likes of Whoop, Polar, and Oura. Now it has evened up the score. Most recently it slapped on nap tracking and sleep coaching.

No doubt, there are additional goodies in store that will land in the years ahead. What exactly will depend on is whether or not new sensors are built into the watch. Garmin has acquired the rights to Firsbeat Analytics technology, which puts it in a prime position to keep developing these types of metrics.

New sensors

New sensors are always a possibility. In fact, we seem to be close to the stage where there will be a radical shakeup of health tracking technology. A number of different companies are working on sensors that will track blood pressure, sweat, glucose, hydration, and more from the wrist in real-time and continuously. Probably the one which is most likely to land in the near future is blood pressure tracking from the wrist.

А better smartwatch experience

It is fair to say that the current Fenix line is very limited as far as smartwatch features. Particularly if you compare the device to the likes of the Apple Watch or Galaxy Watch. Sure, you get the basics, such as notification support, music control, and storage, but it doesn’t go much beyond that.

Is that a particular problem? Probably not, as the customer base for this type of device is comprised of fitness enthusiasts. But it would be nice to get a better smartwatch experience on future Fenix generations. Things that could potentially be added include a microphone and smart assistant voice control, better and richer third-party app support, and more.

AI chatbot integration

The Fenix 8 could improve user interaction with the introduction of an AI-powered chatbot. This innovative feature could be designed to allow users to ask questions directly about their health and fitness data. It would provide a more interactive and engaging way to understand and utilize a user’s information.

Something like this was recently introduced by Whoop. They’ve have integrated AI capabilities into their smartphone app, enhancing user experience through personalised, conversational data analysis.

More fully integrated Garmin Pay support

Right now there is only limited Garmin Pay bank support. Hopefully the company will expand this in the future to more banks and financial institutions, across a wider range of countries

Cellular model

A cellular model in the next year or so? This could even be released as an interim version of Fenix 7. Perhaps a Fenix 7 LTE.

One could say that this is another feature that the typical Fenix watch user does not really require. After all, you’re not very likely to call your office while running. But it would be nice to have the option of one with proper cellular connectivity that doesn’t end with security functions. Perhaps a Fenix 8 model with cellular and one without.

What do Garmin users want?

We recently scanned the Garmin Forums to see what the company’s user-base wants from the next iteration of the device. You can check out the article in full on this link.

Basically it boils down to even better battery life which was a very commonly mentioned feature. Additionally, users had voice prompts, better GPS accuracy, more storage space, improved display, customisable heart rate sensor, ability to send distress messages and more on their list. So a mixed bag.

So what do you think? What would you like to see on the Fenix 8?

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Marko Maslakovic

Marko founded Gadgets & Wearables in 2014, having worked for more than 15 years in the City of London’s financial district. Since then, he has led the company’s charge to become a leading information source on health and fitness gadgets and wearables.

31 thoughts on “Garmin Fenix 8 release date: Rumors, features & what to expect

  • Qi charging would be nice.

    • Sarebbe bello il misuratore di pressione sanguigna, glucosio sudore… Ci starebbe un sacco

    • i would realy like to see a impoved customer xp. mainly the charging is a painfull process for me. cable contacts are getting bad and you notice on the next morning, that you did not charge your watch overnight. a reason to buy a version of my fenix watch, would be a wireless charging option.

      • Never had an issue charging my 3 fenix watches I have. It is much better than my old suunto and polar chargers.

        • F3 was fine – it is the F5 and above that is problematic.

      • Agree, charging the Fenix 5 plus can be hit and miss even after thorough cleaning

        • I would love to see blood pressure, glucose and other health monitoring abilities and cellular connectivity in garmin fenix 8.

          • That will really really make a difference

      • Totally agree 200%

    • Chciałbym zobaczyć w nowym fenix 8 pomiar smogu, czy chociaż czujnik pomiaru coś takiego jak Garmin Tempe, temperatury ale smogu. W tych czasach trzeba na bieżąco sprawdzać zapylenie i dbać o zdrowie, zwłaszcza w niektórych miastach, bo bezsensu biegać przy ulicy wdychając smrody spalin..

    • tactix 7, 45mm please…

  • I would love to see a really good ECG sensor on the new Fenix 8 because the Fenix 7 PPG sensor does not track well through my brown skin tone. Wearing the HRM chest strap all day would be a little uncomfortable after a while. This would allow others with dark tattoos and skin to get more accurate data readings from heart rate, HRV, etc.

    • Wireless charging, ECG and body temperature are what I’d change my current watch for.

  • Excellent! I have been using Apple Watch since 2016 (series 2 and 5) and I am ready for Garmin Fenix. I am done with the poor battery life and metrics. I just wonder how reliable is the device in terms of quality (hardware, software), software stability, updates, improvements and corrections… customer service and warranty… I am planning on getting a Garmin Fenix 7 or 8 when my AW dies (very soon, the battery is not holding a day). Any information about these topics would be helpful. Thanks.

  • LTE is not just to place a call. more to be able to stream spotify while running, or Garmin LiveTrack.

    • Here is my wish list:

      Better solar panels to increase range.
      Contactless charging with kit to do so while wearing it.
      SOS function with LTE including last coordinates.
      Recco passive beacon.
      Active Arva capabilities.
      Laser beam for night signaling and rescue.
      Resting/activities alarms.

      • Agree with your list plus also for swimmers and hikers an emergency contact when in need of emergency support

  • Would like to see SOS satellite communication using their inReach system (not just remote access to an inReach device.)

  • J’aimerais pouvoir connecter une batterie externe tout en gardant ma montre fixé à mon bras. Le système supporte déjà cette option.

  • I would like the elevation to continue working and not get messed up by the barometer. I enjoy my step stair count and outdoor elevation fields. Now all I see is update failed and ok is my only option.

  • I’ve read the tea leaves and they say “Expect a Fenix 7+ in June”

    • Must be drinking the wrong tea 😉

    • Ciò per caso le foglie di te sanno anche quando esce il fenix 8 o epix gen3?

  • I don’t see contactless charging because of the need for data transfer via cable. But using the same magnetic charger you find on the new Marq 2 would be great.
    I don’t see most of the medical stuff like blood pressure or glucose level gauges because of all the FDA regulations. I think it would be better to have an extra device/band that incorporates those sensors which will transfer data to Garmin Connect and whatever watch you’ve got. The market for that would be huge and SW updates would be easier zu implement.
    I don’t see a Fenix 8 since the 7 Pro already has the new Elevate 5 sensor. There might be a 7 Pro + with a better display.

  • What annoys me is the inability to count one running exercise as one, if it is “broken” in some way. I use to run 10 km to the seashore, have a quick dip, and run home. I see that as one single 20 km run, plus a 200 m swim in the middle. But both Garmin and Strava perceives that as three different activities, even if i link them as a multi sport activity.

    A simple firmware update should be able to fix this.

    • It’s a bit of a pain, but you can download the gpx files and then combine them in a text editor. Delete the old activities then upload new one with the gpx file to log as one. I’ve done it for a few important activities but wouldn’t do it everyday

  • Increased battery life.
    I realize they aren’t gps watches, but Citizen has made fully solar charged watches for decades. No charging ever

  • I would like to be able to answer the phone from the watch, when my phone is in my backpack I wouldn’t have to take it out. I currently sold my Fenix because I really miss this function, if such a model is released I will definitely become its customer. It would also be nice to reply to text messages or WhatsApp messages with a full keyboard.

    • Venu 3 has built in mic+speaker so you can take calls. Hopefully that is a sign that this might come in the next Fenix release.

  • Waiting for LTE solar pro with the training readiness feature. Until then, my Fenix 6 pro compares well enough to the latest watches that I don’t want to upgrade.


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