Dropped your phone outdoors? Your Garmin watch can now help you find it

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

Garmin is introducing a new feature for your Garmin watch that will help you find a lost phone – even if it's miles away from where you are now. 

As Gadgets & Wearables explains, the new Find a Lost Phone function is rolling out now to Garmin Forerunner 965, 955, 265 and 255 owners who are enrolled in the company's public beta testing program.

This is different to your watch's existing Find My Phone feature, which is designed for use at close range, and only works when your watch and phone are close enough to establish a Bluetooth connection, and is for those occasions when your phone is hidden in a coat pocket or under a sofa cushion.

This is still an excellent feature that's saved me on more than one occasion, guiding me towards my handset with on-screen notifications that showed you whether I was getting closer or further away, while also triggering a loud tone on my phone, but if won't help if you dropped your phone at the trailhead.

When activated, the new tool records the point at which your phone and watch were last connected, and then guides you back to that location via GPS. Once there, you should hopefully be able to use Find My Phone to pinpoint it.

What else is new?

The new software update (beta version 19.09) also adds a heap of other interesting tools, including a Garmin Messenger app for sending and receiving brief notes from your watch using your phone's data connection; Jet Lag Advisor to help you adapt to changes in time zones before, during and after your trip; and improved heart rate accuracy. If you're wearing a chest strap heart rate monitor, your watch can now switch between that and your watch to get the best readings.

Joining a public beta testing program is a great way to try out new tools before they're rolled out to everyone, but remember that there's always a risk that beta software may contain bugs that prevent your device working as expected. After all, the whole point of the program is to help Garmin's software engineers find and solve any such issues. If you'd like to go ahead and sign up, take a look at our guide how to join Garmin's public 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.