Garmin revealed today that it has incorporated solar charging into a number of its popular sports-watch models. Fenix 6 and 6s, Instinct, and Tactix Delta are all included.
To refresh your memory, the technology was successfully applied to the Fenix 6x Pro Solar model. Power Glass, a translucent solar-charging lens that fits on top of the watch face, was unveiled late last year. This transforms the sun’s rays into energy, which extends the battery life by 10–15%.
Garmin followed up with the Quatix 6X a few months later. The original Quatix 6 is upgraded with a solar charging display.
Other Garmin watches now include solar charging capabilities.
A couple more watches will be treated starting today.
Solar Fenix Series 6 Pro
The Fenix Series 6 Pro Solar (and 6s) models cost $150 more than the original. You get solar charging, 2,000 tracks of music storage, PacePro Pacing Strategies, the option to show on-screen workout animations, some additional outdoor recreation profiles and preloaded maps, and a few golf goodies for that price. Surfing, indoor wall climbing, bouldering, and surfing are among the new sports profiles.
In battery saver smart watch mode, the 6 Pro Solar has a battery life of 48 days, which increases to 80 days with solar. The 6 Pro Solar models will last 14 days indoors and 16 days outdoors in standard mode (assuming sufficient sunlight). The GPS battery lasts 36 hours or 40 hours with solar power.
Starting at $850, Garmin offers the Fenix Series 6 Pro Solar (and 6s).
The Instinct Solar edition is $100 more expensive than the non-solar version. It costs $400 to get started.
When used indoors, the more expensive model can last up to 24 days in smart watch mode, and if you spend at least 3 hours daily in sunny conditions, it can last up to 50 days. Because it sports a monochrome display, the watch benefits significantly from solar charging. In fact, Garmin claims that in Battery Saver Watch mode, the timepiece may run on solar power for an indefinite period of time. In GPS mode, the Instinct Solar lasts 30 hours, and with solar, it lasts 38 hours.
The Pulse Ox optical heart rate monitor, which can detect blood oxygen levels, and the popular Body Battery function for monitoring your body’s energy reserves are also included in Instinct Solar. There is a unique Surf Edition with pre-installed tide tables for individuals who enjoy surfing.
The fourth generation of tactical watches is certified to the MIL-STD-810 military standard. Its solar charging capability extends the battery life to 24 days (up from 21 days) in smartwatch mode and 66 hours with fully active GPS (up from 60 hours).
This one costs $200 more than the original, starting at $1,099 on garmin.com. A more expensive version includes an Applied Ballistics Calculator for accurate long-range elevation and windage solutions.
“Athletes and adventurers who want to push their limits love Garmin’s multi-sport GPS watches,” said Dan Bartel, vice president and general manager of worldwide sales at Garmin.
“With the new solar models, they’ll be able to push those limits even further.”