We will see the Garmin Instinct in 2020, my guess would be Q2. Despite the relative ugliness of the original Garmin Instinct (reviewed here), it sells well. Thus it’s no longer surprising that we are seeing Garmin iterate a new version to this popular product only a year or so after the initial launch of the first version.
We’ve known about the existence of the Instinct 2 for a couple of months now eg it’s listed in my monthly post of ‘every GPS device known to mankind‘
I’d heard it was going to have the new generation of Garmin’s ELEVATE HR sensor, which makes sense as the Instinct was one of the last devices to have the old sensor type. This new sensor also will bring with it the addition of Pulse Ox and I’ve also had it confirmed in a few sources that we will also see the Instinct’s existing swim features boosted by the oHR being enabled whilst swimming – but do NOT expect support for your caching HR strap (HRM-TRI, etc).
Even more excitingly, I’d heard there are increases to the existing battery life which I thought was from the addition of the Sony GPS chip (but that’s already probably in the Instinct) although it could be from some of the battery tech being rolled down from the Fenix 6??. But the following link on Reddit seems to have also confirmed that the Instinct will get the addition of SOLAR charging which should add a further 10% to all the battery life claims, or at least it will if the sun is shining.
Here’s the Reddit source for the SOLAR info
There is clearly a market for an outdoors watch that is like a Garmin Fenix…but cheaper. Casio is sniffing around in that space with the WSD-F20 and WSD-F30 but they are coming in too high on price despite having an offering that is different and nuanced from what Garmin offers.
Other evidence for a new Instinct 2 is seen by prices of the original Garmin Instinct falling to around and below £/$/Eu200.