Garmin is rolling out a new beta software update for two of its most popular GPS watches, adding a new gaming activity mode to track your heart rate, body battery, and stress levels during intense sessions of PUBG, Apex Legends or, er, Minecraft.
There are three gaming profiles to choose from: sandbox, match play, and battle royale. The watch will track your stats for each match, and monitor how long it's been since you last took a break.
Software beta version 13.16 is available now for the Garmin Instinct 2 and Garmin Instinct Crossover, and adds a variety of new features and bug fixes. Gaming might seem like a strange inclusion, but it's not new territory for Garmin. In 2020, the company launched the Garmin Instinct Esports Edition, which was made with streamers and professional gamers in mind, and could display your heart rate on a livestream.
What else is new?
Other new features added with beta version 13.16 include a tides glance so surfers and anglers can see tide times without drilling through menus, a new workouts app, and support for Garmin's Training Readiness score. This uses your recent sleep history, workout history, and heart rate data to determine how well you're likely to perform in your daily training session.
The Garmin Instinct 2 and 2S are getting the popular Morning Report feature, which helps you prepare for the day ahead by showing your sleep score, workout recommendation, weather report, and calendar events when you wake. The Garmin Instinct Crossover is getting new activities and activity categories, and extra pages in the post-activity summary loop.
Garmin has also fixed a bug where the Instinct Crossover's hands would sometimes fail to return to their proper positions once the watch's buttons are locked. See Garmin's forums for a full list of all changes and bug fixes.
Garmin recently updated its beta software program to allow wireless downloads, but watches in the Instinct series lack Wi-Fi, so you'll need to find your USB cable to download and install it. Before you do, take a look at our guides how to join Garmin's beta testing program, and reasons why you should and shouldn't download beta software to your watch.
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Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 13 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better).