Garmin’s Forerunner series now features two OLED smartwatches—the Forerunner 265 and 965. These devices are specially designed for runners, offering advanced health and fitness-tracking features along with training tools and traditional smartwatch features.
The Forerunner 265 ($450) is a 46mm smartwatch with both physical buttons and a touchscreen (which you can lock to prevent accidental input). It offers the usual suite of Garmin features, including multi-band GPS, Body Battery energy monitoring, several training modes, sleep and stress tracking, a pulse oximeter, pregnancy tracking, and menstrual cycle tracking. It can also alert you to an abnormal heartbeat and track your respiration rate.
As for smartwatch-focused features, the Forerunner 265 includes on-wrist push notifications and contactless Garmin Pay support. It can also stream downloaded music from Spotify, Amazon Music, and Deezer (no Apple Music streaming, unfortunately). Note that a 42mm model of the Forerunner 265, called the Forerunner 265S ($450), is also available.
Garmin’s premium Forerunner 965 ($600) offers a larger 1.4-inch display, plus a couple of extra features geared toward hardcore athletes—realtime stamina info, load ratio (to help you avoid overexertion and injury), detailing climbing data, and built-in maps.
The main benefit of an OLED display, aside from its increased image quality, is that it allows for an always-on screen with a minimal impact on battery life. And these devices offer a pretty solid battery life—a maximum 15 days for the Forerunner 265 and 23 days for the Forerunner 965. (That said, if you’re actively tracking workouts with GPS enabled, these smartwatches last 24 hours and 31 hours, respectively.)
I should note that OLED displays are a somewhat dim. So, if you like to run outside during the day, you may want to wait for the reviews to come in for these watches. They may be difficult to see in direct sunlight.
Both the Forerunner 265 and 965 are available to order today. They cost $450 and $600, respectively. Note that the Forerunner 965 won’t ship until late March, though the 265 will ship immediately.
Garmin Forerunner 265
Now with an always-on AMOLED display, Garmin's Forerunner 265 bridges the gap between a smartwatch and fitness tracker. It offers several health tracking sensors and training modes that encourage you to run.
Garmin Forerunner 965
Now with an AMOLED display, the Garmin Forerunner 965 is geared toward hardcore runners. It offers unique features like realtime stamina data and maximum training loads to help you avoid injuries