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Garmin’s next watches might be Venu Sq 2 and a music variant of the same. This is according to a new FCC filing and an official Garmin distributor list leaked previously.
Back in April we obtained a list of Garmin devices that will be released in 2022 from a local authorised dealer of the company’s products. The accuracy of this list has been proven by wearables that have been released since then. This includes Vivosmart 5, Forerunner 255 and 255s and the Forerunner 955 range.
Devices that are also mentioned but have not seen the light of day yet include Garmin Venu Sq 2, Vivomove Trend, the next generation of Marq watches, Instinct Analog and a mystery watch called Garmin Austin. The last on this list particularly piques our interest. We’re not sure if this is an entirely new watch. It was slotted into the “Outdoor” category so may be another variation of the Fenix 7 line or Epix 2.
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Our guess is that most of these watches will probably drop in Q3, ahead of the all-important end-year shopping bonanza. IFA has proven itself to be a great launching ground. It is coming back to an in-person format in Berlin at the start of September.
But we may see a Garmin watch before then.
A clue as to what may be next lies in two filings that have just dropped by the FCC. They are actually for two devices that go by similar monikers – IPH-04390 and IPH-A4390. Seeing as these are nearly identical, they are probably referring to two different iterations of the same device.
Most of the FCC paperwork is under lock and key as there is a confidentiality clause which will not run out for a few more months. But the info that is available shows that one of these devices has support for WiFi, the other one doesn’t. The label is square in shape which provides another clue as to what to expect.
Looking at our list of upcoming devices the only watch that fits this description is Garmin Venu Sq 2. The model without WiFi would be the base version, the model with WiFi would be the Music version. So don’t be surprised if you see that one drop over the summer.
You might think that it make not make sense for Garmin to continue distinguishing between a Music and non-Music variant. Surely, they could merge to two and simplify things. But the company still sees a distinct market for both editions as demonstrated by the recent launch of the Forerunner 255 and its separate Music variant. Sure there’s only a $50 price difference, but why spend more money if you don’t ever plan on using music on your watch.
The original Venu Sq was released in September 2020. As mentioned, it adopts a square shape, something Garmin has stayed away from in recent years. Some might even say that it reminds a bit of the old Pebble Time watches.
Inside the fibre-reinforced polymer body is a rather low-res (240 x 240 pixel) 1.3 inch LCD display. And while this combination makes the device look a bit cheapish, it has the benefit of keeping the price down. The base model sells for about $200 and $50 extra will get you the Music edition.
Under the hood is the typical gamut of sensors along with built-in GPS. Battery life is not too shabby at 6 days, 14 hours with GPS switched on and about a half of that if you switch music on, as well.
One could reasonably expect a slightly larger, more high-res display on Garmin Venu Sq 2. Other design improvements may revolve around the two physical button configuration. On the current model this looks nice, but its operation is a bit clumsy. Which means you often need to resort to the touch screen functionality to get things done.
Of course, the company will probably throw in the Gen 4 Elevate heart rate sensor and perhaps a barometer or altimeter. And while the original Venu Sq suffices as far as basic stats, some more advanced sports functions and performance metrics would be nice.
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I often exercise with an external heart rate monitor paired to my sports watch. As good as wrist based heart
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