Garmin enriches its pioneering offer with racing functions and solar energy

On Global Running Day, Garmin unveils two new running watches from its flagship line: the Pioneer 255 at $349.99 and the Pioneer 955 at $499.99. Both GPS watches have new running features, including multiband GPS and a running widget. The Pioneer 955 is also available in a solar version which, as the name suggests, adds solar charging to extend battery life.

The Pioneer 255 is a lightweight mid-range running watch built on top of the Pioneer 245. It comes in two sizes. The standard predecessor to the 255 weighs 46mm and 49g, while the smaller 255S weighs 41mm and 32g. The predecessor will also have 255 music variants and 255 S music which can store up to 500 songs on the clock. This includes Spotify, Amazon Music and Teaser playlists, Garmin says. Music templates cost an additional $50 for a total of $399.99. The watches are 5 ATM water resistant, with a battery life of around 14 days and up to 30 hours in GPS mode.

The new running widget, level of sleep rate variation (HRV) while you sleep, multi-band GPS, and the ability to easily switch between games at the push of a button are just big extras right now. The race widget provides race information including performance predictions, race day weather and a countdown. Multiband GPS is an increasingly popular feature in multisport watches. Multiple satellite frequencies. The Pledge is the best accuracy in situations where it is difficult to get a good signal. Finally, the watch also has a “morning report” function. When you wake up, the watch displays a brief summary of today’s weather, tips for daily exercise, last night’s sleep, recovery time, training level and HRV level.

Compared to the predecessor 245, Line 255 adds a Garmin Pack NFC chip. Otherwise, it does not differ much at the sensor level. It still has SpO2 sensors to support features like continuous heart rate monitoring and body battery. The gauge measures how well you recover while you sleep and how well you are filtered for stress during the day. The flagship 255 series also supports Bush announcements and basic smartwatch functionality such as Crimson security features such as incident detection and live tracking. For training features, it also provides users with daily training recommendations and access to training programs through detailed metrics in the Garmin Coach and Garmin Connect apps.

The Pioneer 955 series adds solar charging and a new workout readiness meter.
Photo: Garmin

Meanwhile, the Pioneer 955 is an excellent running watch. (However, it’s not as functional as the flagship Carmine Phoenix series.) It’s still 47mm long, has a color touchscreen, and weighs 52g. But Button fans need not worry. The 955 still has five physical buttons that can be used in conjunction with a touchscreen. Like the 255 series, it’s 5 ATM waterproof, but has a slightly longer battery life of 15 days with around 42 hours in GPS mode. The $599.99 Forerunner 955 Solar model features Carmine’s patented Power Glass lens. With solar charging, the 955 solar can operate for up to 20 days on a single charge, up to 49 hours in GPS mode. (It uses about 50,000 lux per day for about three hours, so take it with a grain of salt.)

Like the Pioneer 255 series, the Forranner 955 features multi-band GPS, HRV status, morning reports and a new running widget. This is the new training readiness meter. As the name suggests, the metric takes into account sleep, recovery time, HRV, and some metrics that give users a rating that they’re ready for a workout. It also includes real-time endurance tracking, first introduced by Garmin’s Phoenix 7 series.

When it comes to health tracking and smart features, the Pioneer 955 has the same key features as the 255. However, it includes additional training metrics such as PacePro and ClimbPro which provide real-time guidance on your speed and your height. You can save more than 955 to 2000 songs.

The Forerunner 255 and Forerunner 955 will be available starting today. The Pioneer 255 is available in four colors: grey, pink, blue and black. Meanwhile, the Pioneer 955 is available in white and black.

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