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Garmin's new GPS running watches promise high performance at a pocket-friendly price

Made for serious runners as well as regular fitness enthusiasts.
By

Published onFebruary 20, 2024

Garmin Forerunner 165 series
TL;DR
  • Garmin has launched the Forerunner 165 and Forerunner 165 Music.
  • Starting at $249, the GPS watches marry Garmin’s staple running features with AMOLED displays.
  • The company claims you can get up to 11 days of battery life in smartwatch mode.

Garmin is launching two new fitness watches today — the Forerunner 165 and Forerunner 165 Music. The two new wearables succeed Garmin’s uber-popular Forerunner 55 running watch that launched back in 2019. Needless to say, Garmin’s budget-friendly lineup was long due for a refresh.

The new Forerunner 165 series watches sport 1.2-inch AMOLED displays this time around — a welcome upgrade from the MIP screen on the Forerunner 55. That means you can expect brighter, more vivid colors from the screen. While MIP displays are more power efficient than AMOLED, Garmin promises robust battery life on both the new 165 series watches. The company claims you can get up to 11 days of battery life in smartwatch mode and up to 19 hours in GPS mode. That’s way more than the Forerunner 55.

The biggest difference between the regular Forerunner 165 and the Forerunner 165 Music is, well, Music. The latter lets users download and store songs and playlists from Spotify, Deezer, and Amazon Music for phone-free listening with wireless headphones. It also provides audio prompts so users can follow guided workouts or hear performance alerts with wireless headphones connected to the watch.

Given that the new 165 duo are running watches, they feature some stable Garmin fitness features like Race Adaptive Training Plans for personalized training, Wrist-Based Running Power and Dynamics for real-time running metrics, Training Effect for tracking workout benefits, and more.

For fitness tracking, you get features like wrist-based heart rate measurement, sleep monitoring and sleep score, blood oxygen monitoring, nap detection, stress tracking, and more.

The watches also support more than 25 activity profiles, including trail running, open-water swimming, pickleball, tennis, HIIT, cardio, yoga, and pilates.

Moreover, both the Forerunner 165 series supports Garmin Pay, the company’s contactless payment service.

The Forerunner 165 and 165 Music are compatible with Android and iOS, letting users receive emails, texts, and alerts when paired
with compatible iPhones or Android smartphones.

The watches are now available for purchase. The Forerunner 165 has a suggested retail price of $249.99, while the Forerunner 165
Music is $299.99.