Free update brings 18 new features, tweaks and fixes to your Garmin watch

Man checking sports watch during run
(Image credit: Getty Images)

It's a good time to be part of Garmin's public beta testing program, because the company has just rolled out a new software update for the Forerunner 265 running watch that adds a bumper bundle of new features, tweaks, and bug fixes, similar to those recently released for the Forerunner 255 and 965.

As Polly Allcock of Notebookcheck explains, software beta version 18.5 adds Garmin's new jump rope activity profile (which counts the number of jumps you make, as well as calories burned), the Sleep Coach glance (which shows how much sleep you should aim to get tonight), and a database of 400m running tracks worldwide (which should help your watch monitor track sessions more accurately).

There's also the ability to undo accidental presses of the lap button, which is a boon if you're as clumsy as me, and the limit on the number of points that can be added to a course has been lifted.

There are some minor bug fixes too, including correction of an issue that caused text in map navigation data fields to be cut off, and one where the touchscreen wouldn't always function as expected in sleep mode. Touch controls are usually turned off while you're asleep, but they can be reactivated manually.

For full details of everything included in the new software, take a look at the change notes on Garmin's official forums. The software is rolling out in stages, and at the time of writing has only been pushed out to 20% of beta testers, so don't worry if you haven't received it yet.

Join the testing program

Of course, with any beta software there's a possibility that things might not work as expected; after all, the purpose of any beta testing program is to identify and resolve any issues before the release candidate (RC) rolls out to all users. If you're thinking about joining Garmin's beta testing program to try out new features first, take a look at our list of reasons why you should and shouldn't install beta software on your watch to help you decide whether to go ahead.

If you decide you want to join the program and get early access to new features, you can get started by logging into your Garmin account at and clicking the small watch icon at the top right (devices and sync status). Choose the device you want to receive beta updates and click 'Device settings'. Provided that device supports beta updates, you'll see a link giving you the option to join the program.

Option to join Garmin beta program

(Image credit: Future)

For more details, take a look at our complete guide how to join Garmin's beta testing program.

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 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), usually wearing at least two sports watches.