After many months and dozens of rumors, Garmin has unveiled its two latest sports watches: the Forerunner 955 and Forerunner 255. Both have received major upgrades for 2022, with the 955 gaining a solar option and touch controls, and the 255 evolving from a device for intermediate level runners to a full triathlon watch.
The watches are available to order now direct from Garmin. We'll be testing both very soon to see whether they earn a place in our roundup of the best GPS watches, and bring you full reviews so you can choose the right one for you.
Garmin Forerunner 955
The new Garmin Forerunner 955 is a multi-sports watch, and is the first device in the 900 series to come in both standard and solar editions. According to Garmin's own figures, the solar edition can run for up to 49 hours in GPS mode with sufficient sunlight, making it a good choice of ultramarathons and multi-day hiking expeditions. That's a serious upgrade; for comparison, the Forerunner 945 could run for just 36 hours with GPS enabled.
Whether you opt for the standard or solar edition, you'll get a new touchscreen display that works together with the traditional setup of five physical buttons around the edge of the watch's case. You'll be able to disable the touch controls if you prefer, but they should make scrolling through menus and panning across maps much easier.
Once your watch syncs with your phone in the morning, you'll see a morning report that's a more sophisticated version of the one first introduced with the Garmin Lily back in January 2021. The Forerunner 955's new morning report will show information on your night's sleep and heart rate variability status, as well as weather and a suggested workout for the day ahead. If you'd prefer to only see certain snippets, you can customize the report to display only the stats that are most useful to you personally.
Like the Garmin Fenix 7 and Epix released earlier this year, the Forerunner 955 includes a new real-time stamina meter that shows how much energy you have remaining during a workout, helping you judge whether you need to dial back your effort, or can afford to push yourself a little harder to make the most of our workout.
The 955 also comes with a new Running Power tool, which gives real-time metrics on the power being exerted during your workout when the watch is connected to a Garmin Running Dynamics Pod or HRM-Pro heart rate monitor. We can't say for certain until we've tested it, but it sounds like the watch essentially comes with Garmin's Running Power app preinstalled.
The standard Forerunner 955 is available to order now for $499.99 / £479.99, while the Forerunner 955 Solar is $599.99 / £549.99. As we'd come to suspect from recent leaks, there's no LTE edition available right now, though we wouldn't rule out the possibility of one being released at some point in the future.
Garmin Forerunner 255
The Forerunner 255 has also received a major upgrade. Whereas the Forerunner 245 was a mid-range running watch designed for athletes wanting to take their sport to the next level, the 255 is a fully fledged triathlon watch that allows you to switch between cycle, swim, and run tracking with the press of a button.
Like the Forerunner 955, one of its most interesting new features is a race widget, which doesn't just give predicted race times (a feature found in many recent Garmin watches including the Fenix 7 and Epix), but also includes a race day countdown, weather forecast to help you prepare your sportswear, and workouts that adapt depending on your race plans.
Like many recent Garmin watches, the 255 will provide workout suggestions to give your training structure, but unlike the entry-level Forerunner 55, the new watch can plan out a whole week of workouts for you to complete.
You'll also benefit from multi-band GPS, which should provide a faster location lock and more accurate tracking in built-up or heavily wooded areas where watches often struggle to pinpoint your location.
The watch will offer Garmin Pay, which allows you to make contactless purchases and pay for transit in supported areas (see the full list of supported banks for more details), and if you'd like to enjoy tunes without streaming them from your watch, there Forerunner 255 Music has storage for up to 500 songs, including playlists from Spotify, Amazon Music and Deezer, which you can listen to using your best running headphones.
Unlike its predecessor, the Forerunner 245, the new watch is available in two sizes. The standard Forerunner 255 measures 46mm in diameter, while the Forerunner 255S is just 41mm, making it Garmin's smallest dedicated sports watch to date.
Prices are the same for both sizes, with the Forerunner 255 and 255S on sale now for $349.99 / £299.99, and the Forerunner 255 Music and 255S Music costing $399.99 / £349.99.
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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.