Garmin Edge 1040
There have been a couple of small leaks from April that seem to confirm the Edge 1040 will be here soon and I fully appreciate that the 540/840 should be expected first.
Alongside that, we might also see a simultaneous launch of the Garmin Edge 140 as Garmin is now often launching two models at the same time. However, there is zero intel for Edge 140.
Updated: 21 September 2021
What was added to the earlier 1030 Plus?
Looking back at the 1030+ (full Garmin Edge 1030 Plus review here) is important as it was a recent release from July 2020 and its updates involved faster internal tech that simply made it faster than the 1030 and with a longer battery life. Thus I don’t think we will see a notably better processor or more onboard memory on the Edge 1040 as they were updated merely a year ago.
The 1030+ also received Firstbeat features and some catch-up features from the 530/830 plus a better setup. Other than the FB Daily Workout Suggestions, none of that was overly interesting!
Possible New Hardware Capabilities of an Edge 1040
Let’s return to the Edge 1040. There are no leaks on any likely features however some interesting bets would cover these four hardware additions.
- Edge 1040 LTE
- Edge 1040 Solar
- Latest gen of multi-frequency Sony GNSS chip
- Contactless payments – NFC
Remember Garmin acquired the following companies and they are certainly making use of the tech that came with them: GEOS (2021, for LTE), Firstbeat (2020, for physiology & training plans), iKubu (2015, for Varia), and SunPartner (2019, for Solar).
LTE – 95%
LTE is an obvious addition for a bike computer. It would support live tracking and emergency incidents.
I would be surprised if the Edge 1040 didn’t have LTE, it might even come as standard ie without an option to get a non-LTE 1040.
However, when recently adding LTE to the 945 Garmin decided that change alone did not warrant a new monicker. Thus the Edge 1040 would need MORE HEADLINE FEATURES than just LTE to justify the name.
Consider also the kind of person who would buy the Edge 1040. Perhaps a richer cyclist, who would be more inclined to subscribe to Garmin’s premium services over LTE.
Solar – 80%
I’m not sure that a Garmin Edge needs any kind of battery boosting tech when its current battery life is already great.
Furthermore, it’s not clear to me that the amount of energy Solar would capture would be significant compared to what an Edge 1040’s big, battery-guzzling screen might use. If, for example, 20-hour battery life can only be increased to 21 or 22 hours then…what’s the point? It’s the same argument for an AMOLED smartwatch with a day and a half battery life…what’s the point of boosting it by Solar for an hour or two?
There would also need to be an entirely new screen and a new solar panel around the screen edge if Garmin adopts the same approach to the siting of the solar panels as on the Fenix.
Latest Gen of Sony GNSS Chip – 30%
The newest Sony chips use slightly more power than the current Sony chips to deliver extra accuracy.
What’s the point of a more accurate bike computer? A: Not much.
It would be interesting if accuracy under trees or responsiveness for navigation could be improved, yet that would still be niche usage.
On the other hand, if Garmin is introducing the newer generation en masse to all models, they might as well start with the high-end ones having already proved the tech in 2020 on handhelds.
NFC – 70%
I don’t understand why I can’t already buy a coffee and cake by using my Garmin Edge for contactless payments. Maybe Garmin assumes we all carry smartphones when we cycle (I don’t) and so we could use Apple/Google Pay instead.
That’s hardware. If you have any other hardware suggestions please add them, below. An integrated camera is very unlikely to be added.
New Software Features on the Edge 1040
Turning to new software features, clearly Solar and LTE have significant software settings stashed away in the menus that, sort of, count as new software features. I suspect that a new headline sports feature is also needed.
Perhaps there could be some triathlon-related feature copying how Wahoo RIVAL/Bolt hand off to each other during triathlon transitions? A: I don’t think so as I don’t see ANY Edge 1030+ devices in triathlons (I’m sure there are some, I just don’t see them)
Perhaps the new, effort-related laps (open repeats) that are added to the 945LTE by automatically detecting efforts could be added to the Edge 1040? A: Probably!
We will probably see some usability improvements either visually or through different ‘menu’ access to features. However, we might also get a small feature or two such as a copy of Wahoo’s recent ‘pin’ screen which is a default screen for each profile that the Edge would snap back to after a given period of time enabling you to briefly change screen to view other data and then not worry about having to change screen back to where you started.
cDa Software Features
I guess the most likely addition would be the introduction of support for Garmin Vector Air (Rally Air) if that product is released at the same time. A top-end bike computer released alongside a top-end bike aero device makes sense.
Advanced Group Varia Features
In September 2021 there was a new Garmin FCC filing which, to me, looked like a new Varia off some sort. If you remember the RTL515 was essentially identical to the RTL510 with Bluetooth added. These are great products and they sell well. However, the battery life needs improving and whenever I pair one to a new Garmin Forerunner/Edge/Fenix I’m always intrigued about the Light network it creates. I appreciate that is created for the lights/radars on your bike but it just seems obvious that Garmin will eventually introduce some group riding features for light synchronisation and radar notifications.
Maybe this will come to the 1040? A long shot, I know.
If Edge 1040 really is due for a 2021 release, its timing and sequencing are unusual, to say the least. Garmin simply won’t have masses of new sports features to introduce so there will be at least two significant hardware upgrades over the 1030+. None of these possibilities is certainties by any means LTE, Sony 2020-1 Gen GNSS chip, Solar, or NFC and only if you pushed me to call it would I go for LTE and Solar.
I would also call a dual-launch with the Edge 140 and/or an Edge Explore V2, although a cDa tool like Vector/Rally Air would be vastly more interesting and would also enable Garmin to deliver some TRUE sports functionality to justify a new pinnacle to their impressive bike computer range.
My personal bet would be that the 1040 will be one of the models we see from Garmin sooner rather than later.
Is it made up?
What do you think?
See the two images, below! Maybe the 1030 Plus was originally going to be called the 1040 but Garmin had a change of heart? Well, to counter that, both the 1030+ and 1040 are listed in the APK hack from the second image although even then, the 1040 may just have been left in there.