Q: Is the Garmin Forerunner 945 too expensive?
A: It depends
I suspect you expected that answer. Let’s assume that the target market is well and truly ‘95% triathletes’. I’m one and you probably are too.
LATEST: Garmin Forerunner 945 Review
Argument 1: Other stuff is even more expensive
Well, in my case, I’ve recently spent £50-odd quid on a Conti-GP6000 tyre that will probably last all year. It’s probably the best all-round performanceish tyre and I would say it’s a ‘must-have’.
I also recently spent £60ish pounds on some beetroot juice concentrate shots. They are ‘essential’ for races and, if I’m riding with someone a bit better than me – which is often, then I need every last watt I can get to keep up. Heck, I’m even considering some HVMN Ketone for races this year and at £30 a pop they are ridiculously expensive. Admittedly the only HVMN stuff I’ve used so far was kindly donated by the manufacturer for a trial. I have been procrastinating over my 2019 purchase for about 3 months now. Is yet another noxious substance to ingest a legal substance-too-far on the finance front?
A: Possibly. You can see where I’m going with this.
Argument 2: Hourly cost is low
At £519 for a Forerunner 945 that works out conveniently as £10 a week or about £1 an hour if I do 10 hours/week training (I do more). If I use it for two years it’ll be 50p and hour, which is less than $1 an hour. The chances are I’ll be able to sell it for more than half the price so, again, the cost per hour is roughly halved again.
Argument 3: My 935 is getting old
I’ve scratched the screen on my 935 (first time I’ve ever done that with a sports watch…I’m careful), the battery life is less than it used to be and, even with just two active CIQ apps (Humon Hex & STRYD data fields) the flow from page to page is MUCH SLOWER than it used to be, to the point where it is starting to annoy me. It’s fine once I start a workout…it’s just the rest of the time. Like plugging it into a USB cable now can take a MINUTE for my PC to decide to talk to it. #PITA
Argument 4: Garmin is making too much money
Our wonderful, privileged lives in the grand historical scheme of things, stem from the success of rampant, evil capitalism. Companies have to make money.
Like IBM’s PCs and others that came before, Garmin WILL FOR SURE one day cease to exist but for now, they are riding the crest of a wave and leaving others in their wake. By some measures their products are ‘the best’ and they have a brand that is trusted by many and, as a consequence, they charge undoubtedly premium prices. Kinda like Apple and Samsung and many others.
Yet, MAKING TOO MUCH MONEY, means profit and not sales. I would imagine that the marginal cost of production of a Forerunner 945 will eventually settle at less than $50 a unit. So there is a whopping gross profit in there to divvy up to cover internal overheads and distributor margins. But a whopping profit will still be left at the end ‘cos Garmin will sell many tens of thousands of the 945s.
Argument 5: I don’t care
More precisely, “I don’t care about the price but I care about who else knows about the price“. Garmin has played a masterstroke here. The 945 looks EXACTLY like the 935. So I can buy one and collect it from somewhere other than home and my partner will REALLY never, ever, ever, ever, ever realise. #Brilliance 😉
Argument 6: I love new tech but…
I’ve always liked new tech but I’m not instinctively a first adopter as I have been burnt many times with wasting hours/days of my life getting new stuff to work. Over the years I have always joked that I should be a professional tech-tester as everything I touch inevitably breaks or, better put, ‘doesn’t work as it should‘. Bizarrely, which you won’t believe, I tend to have better luck with getting sports tech working than other tech.
So, normally I’d wait for you guys to help Garmin sort their bugs out and then buy one in a couple of months time when it ‘just works’.
However, Garmin has, in my opinion, got notably better over the last couple of years with reducing the number of release bugs. So even with the more obscure uses that you will be using the 945 for, there’s a good chance that all will be good.
The other problem with my ‘wait a couple of months’ argument is that the tri season will be over and the price will probably still be about the same. So I might as well buy it and use it. If I have problems then I can switch to the 935.
Argument 7: Some of the new stuff appeals to me
I know that many readers of this, and other, blogs love the Firstbeat stuff. New physiological insights here will appeal to some of you. But, me?, whilst I like the new ClimbPro rather than any specific new Firstbeat tech, I’m somewhat a creature of sporting-habit so I’m relatively sure that I will use the 945 in exactly the same way as I use the 935 right now when it comes to ‘me’ doing sporty stuff.
But I’ve been using music much more recently than I used to. Mainly as I’m doing lots of long run stuff of 2-3 hours and just getting a bit bored with my own internal, mental witterings. So it’s been good listening to a few tracks on my Jabra’s from my somewhat static play list (creature of habit) as I run along the beautiful banks of the River Thames and elsewhere.
I’m also getting hacked off with carrying money and cards around. I seem to have ditched my wallet but, instead, carry a smartphone with a credit card tucked in the case. This is a real PITA to carry around in a trouser pocket. So I’m contemplating taking the jump and starting to use my Starling UK Bank account a bit more when it’s linked to the 945 and leaving my phone AND wallet at home…very 2020.
- I’ve got one just because it’s faster.
- The Garmin PAY and Spotify+Personal Music are a nice-to-have for me
- I’ll sell my 935 in a couple of months to recoup some of the cost
- And, yes, I really will tell my partner 😉 but you don’t have to.
That’s my thought process
Oh. And I have to spend a week writing a review of one this/next month.
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