Posts Tagged ‘Garmin’

Garmin heart rate monitors: HRM-Tri vs HRM-Swim

Wednesday, May 15th, 2019 | Video

Garmin produces a range of heart rate monitors for triathletes. In this video, I’ll compare the HRM-Tri and HRM-Swim. I’ll also talk about Garmin’s new models, the HRM-Run and HRM-Dual.

Both the Tri and the Swim come in the Forerunner 935 triathlon bundle. The Tri is the go-to heart rate for everyday training. It has a stretchy strap that is comfortable so makes the perfect choice for running and cycling. It can also be used in the pool for short distances, such as pool-based sprint triathlons. Just make sure to give it a good rinse when done.

The HRM-Swim is specifically for swimming a pool. It has a non-stretchy grippy strap that is less comfortable but means that it won’t slip down when you dive into a pool or kick off from the side. It is also more resilient to corrosion from pool chemicals.

Both can record heart rate data underwater, although you will only be able to download it when you get out of the water. They both transmit over ANT+, so if you’re looking for something that does Bluetooth you need to look at the HRM-Dual instead. Or the Polar H10, which I have also reviewed.

Garmin Forerunner 945: Should you upgrade?

Saturday, May 4th, 2019 | Sport, Tech

Garmin has announced a new range of watches, including a new flagship Forerunner model, the 945. At over £500, it’s a lot of money to ask for if you are upgrading from the 935. So, should you? Here is my breakdown of the new features.

Music

You can now store up to 1,000 songs from Spotify on your watch. Thus allowing you to go out running and listen to music without your phone. This isn’t a selling point for me. I don’t go without my phone, nor do I listen to music while running. I do sometimes listen to audiobooks. But as the watch only supports Spotify and one other platform, that isn’t an option. It also means having Bluetooth headphones and I don’t want yet another device to charge.

Full maps

And in colour, no less. The breadcrumbs are gone and now you have full maps with routing capability like a sat nav. Some of my friends who do trail runs have said this would be useful to them. However, as I road run, and have never used the maps on my watch, this isn’t a selling point for me. Might be useful in a triathlon run, I guess, but the breadcrumbs would probably be fine. And I’ve never used them so far.

Garmin Pay

Now we’re talking. The idea that I could go out without my credit card because I could just pay on my watch is appealing. That said, I would still take my phone, so I could pay with that. And what isn’t widely mentioned is that Garmin Pay currently supports almost no UK banks. In fact, none of the banks I have a credit or debit cards with are currently supported. So, this might be something for the future, but right now is pretty useless.

Battery life

The 945 still provides two weeks in normal mode, but the GPS mode now boasts an impressive 36 hours, up from 24 hours on the 935. How does it achieve this? By using a new lower-power GPS chip. This sacrifices some accuracy, however. It also supports the new Galileo satellite system, but turning that on will use more power. So, this isn’t necessarily an upgrade, depending on what you value the most.

Improved stats

The stats look pretty similar to the old ones. And they’re not super-useful. It provides you with a training load, for example. But it only includes activities you record on your watch. It can sync from the Edge 1030, but it can’t sync from any other Garmin product or other workouts. I do my structured training on TrainerRoad, so the Garmin stats are meaningless.

Summary

Honestly, I’m relieved. When I heard there was a new top-of-the-range Forerunner out, I thought that sounded like an expense I did not need. But having reviewed the features, I don’t. Right now, it doesn’t offer anything substantially better than my 935.

Garmin Extended Display Mode: not so useful?

Friday, March 29th, 2019 | Reviews, Sport

Garmin Edge computers come with a feature called “Extended Display Mode” that allows you to relay your Forerunner watch data through your bike computer. This sounds super handy for triathlon because you will be tracking the activity through your watch, so relaying the data you are already capturing makes a lot of sense.

In reality, though, it’s not a particularly useful feature.

The data screens are driven by the watch. That means that you can only have a few fields on there. I like to have a tonne of stuff on my display, and at very least I would like to see my speed, power, heart rate and cadence. So, I think I’ll be sticking with running them independently for now.

Mindful Ride Garmin app

Thursday, November 29th, 2018 | Life

In January, Worfolk Limited launch our first Garmin app: Mindful Moments. It gives you timely mindfulness reminders on your watch. Today, we’re pleased to announce our brand new app for bike computers: Mindful Ride.

It’s a widget compatible with the Garmin Edge 1030 models. Once installed, simply pull down on the home screen to reveal the widgets and swipe until you find Mindful Ride. It delivers a short mindfulness instruction every 30 seconds.

Simple, but effective. The app contains eight specially selected messages, all set on the Worfolk Anxiety blue that we developed for our wristbands to be the most calming colour possible.

You can download it from the Garmin Connect IQ Store.

How long do HRM-Tri batteries last?

Friday, August 10th, 2018 | Sport

The HRM-Tri is a chest strap heart rate monitor produced by Garmin. But how long does the battery last?

Garmin gives different estimates. On their website, they say ten months:

Battery life: 10 months (Tri training 1 hour per day)

While on their YouTube page, then say 18 months:

The CR2032 batteries in your HRM-Run, HRM-Swim or HRM-Tri straps will last approximately 18 months, depending on use.

I only got my hands on a Garmin device at the end of January, which means I have been using the HRM-Tri for six months. Today, while running, my watch told me that the battery on the HRM-Tri was very low.

So, that’s somewhat shorter than they claim. Luckily, however, it is easy enough to change the battery and it uses a standard 2032. Here’s a video:

Make sure you don’t drop one of the screws. Otherwise, you’ll be in a desperate search to find it before your toddler eats it.

We now do wearables, too

Thursday, January 25th, 2018 | Limited, News, Tech

Worfolk Limited has been producing awesome software for many years. Whether we are building web applications and mobile apps for customers or launching them ourselves, I take a lot of pride in making them the best apps they can be, both from a user’s perspective and by leaving the client in the best position going forward.

That quality and attention to detail is now expanding to wearable devices, too.

This starts with Garmin devices, and I’m pleased to announce we’ve launched our first app, Mindful Moments. It gives you timely reminders to live in the present. If you have any of the Garmin watches that can download apps from the Garmin IQ Store (Forerunner 230+, Fenix, Vivo), you can try it for yourself.

It’s written in Monkey C, the version of Java that Garmin devices run on. Going forward, we’ll be developing more apps and making these services available to clients, too.