Garmin – What next (later in 2023, after the 965 and Edge 540)

Garmin Epix 2 training status
Garmin Epix 2 Load Focus

Garmin – What next?

The Garmin Forerunner 965 Review is Now Live

It’s only February yet you can be 100% sure that the watches and bike computers that Garmin hope you buy at Christmas are already WELL ADVANCED in the planning stages.

The Forerunners 965 and 265/265s are already sitting in boxes in a warehouse waiting for your Visa card to spring into action in March.

But this article is talking slightly longer term. What comes AFTER the models we already know about?

2023: new Garmin, Polar, Suunto, Apple, Fitbit, Wahoo and Coros watches/bike computers. What will they be for 2023?

other manufacturers – thoughts for 2023 (Polar, Apple etc)

Overview

There won’t be anything spectacularly off-field this year. After a bumper year in 2022, I’m expecting a slowdown in the number of new models and I’m expecting current trends to continue rather than tech supporting exciting new directions for our sports devices.

Garmin’s financial drivers are maintaining market share and maintaining profit margins. That’s an important sentence as it means that they WILL keep pursuing value-added features like AMOLED and LTE and they will actively defend the market positions and features of key devices like Edge 530/540, Fenix 7 and Forerunner 255/265.

Garmin’s conundrum is what to do about the smartness in its watches. Garmin knows that it will easily maintain its position of sports leadership but it can never, ever, ever (really, never) be a leading SMART watch. Garmin’s watches have limited integration capabilities with smartphones, unlike the Apple Watch Ultra.

Prediction Number 1 – Garmin Epix 2X and Epix 2s

In my opinion, there is a high likelihood of an Epix 2X this year, well before we see a Fenix 8. Perhaps also an Epix 2s.

Q: Why?

The upcoming Forerunner 965 has a 1.4″ display. Garmin is conservatively market-testing the 1.4″ tech for the first time with this watch. Once proven, it will make its way into the Fenix line, probably as an Epix 2X that provides the AMOLED option to the 7X.

Q: Are you sure?

There is zero intel here however I would have a good bet on this one for H2.2023. I’m pretty sure that there is a huge demand for AMOLED screens and that AMOLED is the future for the Fenix line and indeed for Garmin’s consumer-grade watches. Epix will eclipse Fenix sales ‘at some point’, not this year, but relatively soon.

We know for sure that the Forerunner 265 will also come as a 265s (small case) and that MARQ2 already has a 1.2″ AMOLED screen. So th265s model is volume testing the smallest screen tech and it doesn’t take a genius to extrapolate that onto an Epix 2s.

Fenix 7- this is the end – Fenix is dead, long live the Fenix

We’ve seen from the 965 that although the screen appears bigger than the 955, the overall case size is not that much bigger, if at all (intel credit @Flo). The black ring/bezel area has instead been shrunk and a titanium bezel was added – probably to maintain the structural integrity of the watch. Page up to the first image in this post to see that, handily, the Epix 2 already has a bezel that can be eaten into by a larger display and, of course, the Epix 2 design already features a structurally strong case.

Prediction Number 2 – Venu 2 plus (40mm, 43mm, 45mm)

Eagle-eyed readers will already know that the Venu 2 plus 43mm is the only 2plus model with voice and that the voice features are tethered to the presence of a smartphone.  As well as make/take calls the Venu 2+ 43mm can already play music on its speaker, support voice assistants, and boost incident detection abilities.

Expect these voice features to find their way to the 40 and 45mm models.

 

Prediction Number 3 – Yawn Fest

We are going to also see an Edge 140 and Forerunner 65. Which you know are going to have a cut-down range of features compared to their mid-range counterparts.

The only interesting move here might be that the Forerunner 65 has a SMALL AMOLED screen. I would have betted against AMOLED finding its way so quickly to “budget” watches but we’ve already seen Polar Ignite 3 do precisely just that.

Prediction Number 4 – LTE

I’m currently using LTE on my Apple Watch 7, and it is a massive battery guzzler. I doubt Garmin has invented a chip that can mitigate the rigours of good LTE performance, so expect a battery drain fest from its LTE-enabled watches too. However, at least Garmin starts off with a bigger battery from the get-go.

However, Garmin’s LTE problems go beyond battery life. The real issue is smart integration. Unlike Apple, I can’t see Garmin producing a watch that can make and take cellular calls without using WiFi or Bluetooth. Apple just won’t let them. Although LTE is a high-margin feature, Garmin can’t fully implement its possibilities due to this limitation. And even if it could technically do it, Garmin would still have to get the agreements with the carriers; even Apple is restricted to a limited number of carriers for LTE services (at least in the UK it is)

The Forerunner 745 is a small-format 955, also available with an LTE option. So maybe we will get a Forerunner 755 that has LTE rather than AMOLED. I’m not so sure about this one. More likely will be further LTE

Perhaps instead of the 2plus (40mm, 45mm), we will see a complete line of Venu 3 watches all with voice and LTE (but perhaps confusingly NOT voice over LTE)

 

 

 

2023: new Garmin, Polar, Suunto, Apple, Fitbit, Wahoo and Coros watches/bike computers. What will they be for 2023?

 

 

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33 thoughts on “Garmin – What next (later in 2023, after the 965 and Edge 540)

  1. The Epix is about a year old…would you really expect an E2X/S or wouldn’t a E3X/S (plus) make more sense….together with ECG and body temp sensors? I owned an AW 5 (non-LTE) and used the possibility of taking calls once in a while…not some feature I miss but on occasion nice to have. However, the flashlight on the X-version is an absolute must. This is one of the best hardware features the Enduro 2/Tactix/F7X has. I think a lot of folks out there would be disappointed if an E3X wouldn’t have one!!!
    I think that in the future, Garmin will only have the Tactix/Enduro line with a MIP screen…the rest will have AMOLED, especially when Garmin is able to improve battery efficency and power consumption.

      1. Hopefully not. I can’t see Fenix having AMOLED screen if there will be Epix S and X. And Fenix is a bigger name than Enduro. Also, I tried Epix and constant dimming turned me off. I hate gesture mode and when Epix’s screen dims, you can’t see it well outdoors. Not to mention disappearing seconds. There still is a huge market for non flashy, energy efficient screens similar to real watches rather than smartphones.

  2. 1. If Garmin can’t make a REAL SMART watch, it’s going to be in real trouble in a few years. Apple will improve the Ultra with each passing year and most iPhone owners will turn their backs on the Garmin brand.
    2. There are 2 solutions with LTE module:
    – DualOS (… but I don’t believe in a watch based on WearOS from Garmin)
    – limiting the operation of the LTE module by cyclical connection every few minutes

    1. I really hope so. I desperately want the 840 to come out asap as I recently cracked the screen on my 810. The 10 series is too big. I think with what Hammerhead has done with the Karoo 2 that Garmin seriously needs to up its game with this next release

  3. As for your EPIX 2S prediction, already Garmin has brought a 1.2” AMOLED display to market in the MARQ 2. So that’s the same size as Fenix 7S.

  4. Hi

    Why they not have more fokus about musik. Every obe who go gym or runnig or what ever like musik. Some model have musik but only from Spotiy!!! Why only.
    I wont watch there u can download musik from my computer and mobile to watch.

    And many journalist not talk about this!!! TAKE OUT GPS AND INSTALL MUSIK…

    1. I didn’t realise they had models that don’t support native MP3, which ones are those? Every Garmin I’ve had with music has used ConnectIQ apps for music but by default it supports local files

    1. cool ty
      they must all be out now!
      nothing looks too interesting on any of them
      however i would bet that all the touchscreen models have the new touchable complications. thus the vo2max shown in some of th pictures is probably clickable

    2. Looks like they’re going for younger audience with these colors. That’s cool, but at the same time the watches look pretty similar to all those AMOLED Huaweis etc. And please Garmin let users below 16 create GC account (in EU)!

  5. I like the sporty design, especially in the white-blue version, it’s a shame that it has such large black borders around the display. In this respect, the 965 is better. It looks like the 965 will have a much smaller black border around the display.

  6. Will they release new Garmin Edge devices (540/840) at the same time or does Garmin typically make different announcements for their devices?

  7. Prediction Number 5 – They Finally start to work on their software?

    One can always be hopeful right? I love the Garmin watches in general but lately, and specifically with the Forerunner 955, I am incredibly annoyed/angry with their software.

    Fix one thing (maybe?), break another… Currently navigation (to a saved location) is broken, lactate threshold is not updating for many users, multiple other issues. This for one of their top tier watches which is now out for almost a year.

    In all my years with Garmin I’ve never been this disappointed.

    1. i’ve just changed my main garmin from my 955 back to an older one.
      the VO2max immediately fell by about 2 points back to the level before when I used the 955. Top tip: buy a 955 for an instant increase to your VO2max.

      so, yes, the metrics are often complete pants.

      ongoing bug fixing and algorithm tuning are probably internally separate from churning out the latest, greatest new watch. I suspect you will remain annoyed with your watch. Sorry!

      that said I was generally happy with the 955.

      1. As a long time Garmin user, I should know better to follow one simple rule – buy their watches 2-3 years after release when they stop messing with software and introducing new bugs 🙂

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