June 2018: Sports Watch Update: ‘All’ new & current Bike/Run/Tri/Fitness Models. Replacement dates. Garmin, Polar, Suunto, Wahoo, Fitbit…more

V2.023 – 22 June 2018

Suunto 9 Review

That was a 100mile MTB ride and a 13 mile run the next day…ouch. suunto 9.

The Suunto 3 Fitness, Fitbit Versa and Garmin Edge 130 are announced and available, with the Garmin Edge 520 Plus being imminent. The interesting Suunto 9 is now also fully public.

The widely expected Garmins did not materialise in May but HERE THEY ARE Garmin FENIX 5 PLUS. Let’s get ready for some excitement with the music enabled Vivoactive 3M (announced!), the Forerunner (2)45M (we’re not sure if it’s the FR45 or FR245 or if the FR45 would be a well-featured watch).

Garmin Fenix 5 Plus – Is it worth it? Buy now or wait for the Review

With the Coros now available, any other tri watch looks set for Kona rather than imminently. Polar news looks like it may be two case variants of the same watch that some people thought were two watches. Also there are further rumours of Polar moving to the middle ground. What does that mean for the V800 replacement?

 


Other interesting news comes from Google. It looks like they are going to start taking WearOS a little more seriously. They should be releasing a PIXEL branded smart watch ie the high-end Google sub-brand. There are also various talks and leaks about Samsung adding their weight to WearOS by producing a WearOS device. This might sound trivial but Samsung have a large market share and an appstore largely devoid of, err, apps. So WearOS could be a win for Samsung as WearOS does have apps…lots of them!. I can’t see it happening myself though.

I also think I’m right in saying that Samsung build their own smartwatch processor…what’s the big deal? Well, that’s what’s holding back the development of WearOS from a hardware perspective by Qualcomm (who supply current WearOS processors but need to supply a more powerful one). Also on the back of this LG seem to be planning a newer and greater WearOS device. LG MAY be classed as the current market-leader on WearOS.

Put that all together and WearOS might start to become more of a contender in the sporty space as well as; against Apple in particular. Or not…And don’t forget, Apple are ‘beefing’ up (ahem) the sport competency of their WatchOS 5.

The Coros Pace Multisport seems to be shipping on Amazon and at $300 comes in $50 less than the 735XT it looks like it is trying to copy. As far as I can tell it doesn’t even yet properly support external sensors. So have a click and a look but don’t buy it (yet) until I post the review in June/July.


This post will be continually updated. Hopefully June will see lots of reasons for me to edit it with the latest news.

Suunto 9 Review


This is my opinion of current & future devices across the GPS running/cycling market. Updates to this will be issued as and when information emerges which may include rumors, although please note that any information provided to me under NDA by manufacturers will not appear here. So there will be a few more surprises 😉 Please let me know of errors or omissions. At the end of the table is a brief discussion about current issues and potential future features. Thank you . Enjoy.

Garmin

CategoryLinks to either a review, opinion article or your local AmazonComments
BikeEdge 1000Superseded
BikeEdge 1030Current, released along with podless Vector 3
BikeEdge 20, Edge 25Entry level cycling computer
BikeEdge 130Entry level cycling computer with very interesting specs. May 2018 announcement/release
BikeEdge 200, Edge 500, Edge 510Effectively Discontinued
BikeEdge 520Still a great cycling computer
BikeEdge 520 PLUScurrent. updated hardware capability (CIQ3) and software
BikeEdge 530530 expected 2018, possibly very soon. Yes, even with the 520 plus announcement.
BikeEdge 800, 810Effectively Discontinued
BikeEdge 820Flagship top-end, nav cycling computer
BikeEdge 830Expected 2018, possibly very soon
OutdoorsEpixNice But Effectively Discontinued and replaced by Fenix 5X
OutdoorsFenix, Fenix 2, QuatixOld
OutdoorsFenix 3 Fenix 3 HR + variantsCurrent, still great devices
OutdoorsFenix 5 PLUS, 5s PLUS, 5x PLUSRefreshed model for Jun 2018 IMMINENT
OutdoorsFenix 5, Fenix 5s, Fenix 5xGarmin’s flagship model for 2017-2018. A plus version *IS* imminent.
OutdoorsTactix Bravo (disc), Tactix Charlie, Descent MK1, D2 Bravo, D2 Charlie‘military’/hunting, diving, aviation variants of Fenix 5
OutdoorsFenix 6, Tactix Delta, D2 Delta, Descent MK2Expected 2019, (Delta 2020)
OutdoorsFenix ChronosQuality innards. F5s firmware. Expensive.
OutdoorsFenix Chronos 2Possible Q3.2018
OutdoorsFenix 2 / Fenix 1Effectively Discontinued, not as good as subsequent models.
RunForerunner 210, Forerunner 220, Forerunner 225Effectively Discontinued
RunForerunner 230Probably won’t be replaced. Effectively Discontinued.
RunForerunner 235Replacement due 2018. Good
RunForerunner 235LApr2018’s cut-down version for the Chinese market
RunForerunner 245Expected Q3.2018
RunForerunner 25Entry level run/sports watch
RunForerunner 30Entry level run/sports watch
RunForerunner 35Entry level run/sports watch
RunForerunner 45 and 45MMay/June 2018
RunForerunner 610, Forerunner 620Effectively Discontinued but good enough
RunForerunner 630Great device
RunForerunner 645 and 645MMusic and non-Music version announced. Q1.2018 aailability UK/USA
Run/TriForerunner 735XTCurrent, great mid-range tri watch (no barometer)
Run/TriForerunner 745XTPossible Q3.2018
RunForerunner 910XTGreat tri watch in its day, still good enough
RunForerunner 920XTGreat tri watch…all you need really.
Run/TriForerunner 935Top tri watch
Run/TriForerunner 9452019
FitnessVivoactiveEffectively Discontinued
FitnessVivoactive 3Current – contender to Fitbit Ionic and Apple Watch 3
FitnessVivoactive 3 MUSIC, Vivoactive 3MBlack VA3 with music, announced
FitnessVivoactive HRGreat device, effectively Vivoactive 2, replaced by Vivoactive 3
FitnessVivofit 2, Vivofit 3, Vivofit 4December 2017 supercedes VivoFit 3
FitnessVivomoveDress watch, superseded September 2017
FitnessVivomove HRCurrent Sept 2017

 

The rest:

 

 

 

 

ManufacturerCategoryLinks to either a review, opinion article or your local AmazonComments
adidasRunSmart RunDiscontinued
Amazfit (Xiaomi-Huami)RunBip / PaceCurrent
Amazfit (Xiaomi-Huami)RunPace 2This is the STRATOS
Amazfit (Xiaomi-Huami)Run/TriSports Smart Watch 2S (STRATOS)Current, Multisport 2018 watch. Option for a hard glass screen
AppleFitnessWatch Series 1 (Sport), Watch Series 2 w/Nike, Series 3 GPS+CellularCurrent
AppleFitnessWatch Series 4Sep-18, could be round.
BrytonBikeRIDER 100, 310, 330, 530E, Rider 530 TCurrent
BrytonBikeRIDER numerous other modelsEffectively Discontinued
CasioOutdoorsPro Trek Smart WSD-F20Current, replacing WSD-F10. Will we see a WSD-F30 in 2018
CatEyeBikeSTEALTH 50, STEALTH EVO, STRADA, PADRONE Smart+2016 models are current
CorosRun/TriPace Multisport M1Current, Garmin 735XT wannabe
EpsonRun/TriProSense 17, ProSense 57, ProSense 307, ProSense 347Discontinued
EpsonRun/TriSF-seriesdiscontinued, replaced by ProSense, in USA
FitbitFitnessBlazeReplaced by Versa
FitbitFitnessChargeDiscontinued
FitbitFitnessCharge 2Current
FitbitFitnessVersaCurrent SE version has Fit Pay payments
FitbitFitnessCharge HRDiscontinued
FitbitFitnessIonicCurrent, September 2017
FitbitFitnessIonic adidasAnnounced Feb 2018, has an adidas app
FitbitFitnessSurgeSuperceded by Ionic
FossilFitness WearOSPuma-brandedFrom 2019 to 2028
GeekeryOutdoorsIronCloud T1IndieGoGo Campaign Q2/Q3.2018 look but don’t touch. Cheaper Fenix 5 wannabe.
GiantBikeNeosTrackCycling Computer
HammerheadBikeKarooCycling Computer, first units released in Feb 2018.
HuaweiFitness WearOSFit, Watch 2 SportWearOS and a good spec. Current (Watch 2 was 2017, Watch 3 maybe 2019) The Fit was effectively the “Watch 1 Sport”. A watch 2 2018 version is also expected as an incremental update.
LezyneBikeMini, Macro, Micro, Micro Watch, Super, Watch variantsThere will be a new model announced in April 2018 with formal launch at Sea Otter. Year 11 (link) for 2018.
LGFitness WearOSWatch SportCurrent, apparently one of the better WearOS devices – certainly spec looks the best.
LGFitness WearOSLM-W315 , LM-305, LM-W325, LM-W319,LM-W315 could be called ICONIC. With one of the other model being the ICONIC SPORT. LM-W319 Imminent June 2018
GoogleFitness WearOSPixel SmartwatchTo be released in 2018 alongside new Pixel smartphone. Unclear if a SPORT/FITNESS version will be released as well.
MIO/MagellanBikeCyclo 505HC + othersNice devices. The 505HC appears to now be discontinued and replaced with a slightly superior 605 HC (2017). Also 210, 205 HC, 200, 400, 405, 315 HC, 315.

Unsure of situation in USA with sister company MAGELLAN’s dated ECHO/SWITCH run/bike products

MisfitFitness WearOSVaporWearOS. Current.
MiViaFitnessRun 3502017 Firstbeat goodness, Versa look-alike
MobvoiFitness WearOSTicwatch S2017 WearOS 2.0 budget sport watch. Ticwatch E is cheaper and non-sport version. Ticwatch 2, Active and Classic are different
MotoFitness WearOS360 Sport – 2nd Gen/SportCurrent
New BalanceFitness WearOSRunIQWearOS. Current
PolarBikeV660V650 refresh 2019/2020
PolarRun/TriV810/V850/V900?V800 replacement said now to be later than the initial spring 2018 that was leaked. Don’t expect the obvious from Polar this year, including any of those names ie it WILL be called something else not what is written to the left 😉
PolarFitnessA370A360 replacement with linked-GPS
PolarRunM200Entry level oHR running/sports watch 2016. replacement 2018/2019
PolarRunM400Replaced by M430 in Q1.2017
PolarRunM430An optical M400, released
PolarBikeM450Replaced by M460 in Q1.2017
PolarBikeM460M450 with STRAVA LIVE
PolarRun WearOSM600Best WearOS sports watch for Android
PolarBikeV650Bike Nav Cycling device, summer 2018 firmware refresh
PolarRun/TriV800Still a great multisport watch
SamsungFitnessGear SportCurrent (Gear Fit Pro is BAND format and the Samsung Gear Fit Plus could be the 2018 version of that)
SamsungFitnessGear S4SM-R800 for Q3.2018. Probably alongside a revamped Gear Sport, perhaps called Gear Sport 4 for consistency of naming? or could be Galaxy Fit.
Sigma SportBikeRox GPS 7.0, ROX GPS 10.0, Rox GPS 11.0, Rox 12.0 SportGood feature set, current.

Rox 12.0 Sport June 2018 looks like a massive leap forwards for the company

SonyFitness WearOSSmartwatch 3 SWR50WearOS. Current
SoWatchFitnessSoWatchIndieGogo – Sports and other stuff
PioneerBikeGPS Cycle ComputerCycling Computer
SRMBikePowerControl 7 (PC7)Cycling Computer
SRMBikePowerControl 8 (PC8)Cycling Computer
StagesBikeDashCycling Computer
SuuntoVariousAmbit 3 variants (Peak, run, Sport…)Still great devices. In many ways superior.
SuuntoVariousAmbit 4The SPARTAN TRAINER is the replacement AMBIT3, at least in terms of looks.
SuuntoVariousAmbit/Ambit 2Effectively Discontinued
SuuntoRun/TriSPARTAN SportCurrent, OK to buy now
SuuntoRun/TriSPARTAN Sport with oHR (WHR)Current
SuuntoOutdoorsSpartan Sport Wrist HR BaroCurrent with more variants possibly in 2018
SuuntoRun/TriSPARTAN TrainerNew outdoor variants in Jan 2018, further variants possibly in 2018
SuuntoOutdoorsSPARTAN UltraCurrent, OK to buy now
SuuntoFitnessSuunto 3 FitnessCurrent. GPS low-end model with interesting specs
SuuntoFitnessSuunto 9Current. High end Spartan ULTRA replacement
TomTomOutdoorsAdventurerStill a great watch. But it looks like TomTom sports division is being closed down at least in US.
TomTomRunRunner 3, Spark 3Still a great watch, also a CHEAP MUSIC version. But it looks like TomTom sports division is being closed down. Still firmware updatesd as of 8May2018
TomTomRunSpark, Runner, Runner 2Effectively Discontinued, there was never a Spark 2
Wahoo fitnessBikeELEMNTA great cycling computer
Wahoo fitnessBikeELEMNT BOLTA great cycling computer
Wahoo fitnessBike + ?ELEMNT New??? Speculation for Q3 2018/19. CEO/Chip is on record saying Wahoo are looking beyond cycling.
Wahoo fitnessBikeELEMNT MINICut down cycling computer no GPS, no power compatibility, Wahoo-only sensors
XPLOVA/AcerBikeX32018…still waiting
XPLOVA/AcerBikeX5Superseded by EVO
XPLOVA/AcerBikeX5 EVOCurrent, refreshed model
XSFitnessXS 4 SmartwatchIndiegogo – Watch, phone, everything.
  • There are many other low-priced brands, several of which are visual rip-offs of the main brands’ models.
  • Some low-priced brands include: PARNERME, UWEAR, GoLife, GooPhone, Reabeam, igSPORT

What have I missed? Are there others?

Note: information that has become available about accessories is NOT included (too many of them). There are also too many Power Meter variants for me to keep track of. I have more than a passing interest in PMs for triathlon disciplines but I don’t keep an eye on the whole market – the document I keep up-to-date on PM is my guide to the best power meter. I’m generally going to exclude bands, above, like the Vivokids v2 although some bands have sneaked in there already.

Recent Trends/Future Trends?: higher res colour screens; music (on watch and live-streamed thru eSIM/nano SIM); battery-duration innovation; <1m GPS accuracy Galileo – now confirmed in Garmin FORETREX and Edge 130; vendor apps/app store (eg Fitbit Pay, Garmin Pay, Apple Pay, Ali Pay); WORKOUT DATA standards, openness and integration; mapping/navigation (on watch and thru eSIM); support for novel accessories & sensor data – environmental (weather), physiological (hydration, blood glucose) & spatial (radar); optical HR; deep smartphone integration (AW2, Apple); common firmware across numerous watch variants; simultaneous dual-band workout recording (ZWIFT+your main recording device with BLE); on-watch SIM card/eSIM (for live services like CRASH and WEATHER and FRIEND LOCATIONS).

Future Challenges: Music on watches has still not been properly addressed. You might cite TomTom 3, Apple Watch, Garmin Forerunner 645M/VA3M and WearOS as all including running with music capability but eventually someone needs to figure out how to properly support multiple streaming services. But just how exactly will streaming services be properly handled other than through on-watch SIM. And very few sports+music watches have an eSIM eg Apple, LG and Samsung.

Product Cycles: Some companies try to copy the Apple model of a new version each year. That’s needs a LOT of R&D to make plausible improvements. Furthermore, the arrival of material improvements in functionality can stagnate, as phone handset manufacturers are now finding. Garmin often have more plausible 2-3 year cycles for a replacement model. When a new base hardware model is announced (usually the higher spec one) there then follows various cut-down versions to make cheaper less able devices – they can have cheaper components &/or restricted firmware, whilst essentially otherwise being the same product.


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Sigma Rox 12.0 will be announced on Monday, seems to have touch display and maps

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