Many of us keep track of our steps and daily activity with our fitness trackers. Smart scales, however, enhance the health tracking experience by offering an easy way to track your weight, BMI, and other important body metrics. If you’re a Garmin user, the obvious choice for your smart scale needs is the new Garmin Index S2.
This new scale is a refresh to the uber-popular Garmin Index, which is now five years old. Since the original’s release, smart scales have become cheap. Really cheap. So, if you’re spending $150 on a smart scale, it better be good. Read our full Garmin Index S2 smart scale review to see if it’s worth the money.
What you need to know about the Garmin Index S2 Smart Scale
Surprisingly, there haven’t been many functional advancements in the smart scale world over the last five years. The Index S2 isn’t wholly different from the original Index under the hood, though the new look might make you think differently.
I love the look of the Garmin Index S2. You might say it’s one of the prettiest smart scales on the market (controversial, I know). It has a mirror-like finish on the top, a new color display, and it’s slightly smaller than the original Index. It’s pretty compact, so you should be able to tuck it away behind a cabinet in the bathroom.
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It comes with four AAA batteries to power the scale, as well as four risers in case you need to use the scale on carpet. There’s also a toggle underneath the scale to switch between pounds, kilograms, or stones.
Garmin’s new scale supports up to 16 users, making it a good pick for large families or sports teams. Each user needs to be added as a connection to the main user’s Garmin Connect account. It’s easy to set up in the app, so I won’t bother walking you through the process.
To get started with the scale, tap it once and wait for the display to turn on. You can then step on it to start your recording. After it is finished, tap on the scale until you find your initials, which you would have entered in when you connected your Garmin account. Leave the scale be once you find your initials, and those stats will be sent over to your Garmin Connect account via Wi-Fi.
A note on connectivity: like the first Index, the Index S2 can connect to multiple Wi-Fi networks. This is an important distinction between the Index S2 and other scales that are Bluetooth-only. You keep your scale connected to Wi-Fi at all times, so once you set it up, you really don’t need to worry about connectivity. With Bluetooth scales, well, we all know how unreliable Bluetooth connections can be.
The Garmin Index S2's design is smart and compact.
The Garmin Index S2 tracks your weight (duh), body mass index (BMI), body fat percentage, skeletal muscle mass, bone mass, and body water percentage. These are all metrics you can track with other smart scales, Garmin or otherwise. During your weigh-in, the scale will scroll through each automatically. It goes through each metric quite fast, but the information is of course available in Garmin Connect for further analysis once it syncs.
Garmin also added a weather widget that appears after your weigh-in stats. It’s a nice touch.
New to the Index S2 — and the feature many Garmin users will be pretty excited about — is an on-device 30-day weight trend graph. This puts your data into the context of your long-term health journey. Everyone’s weight fluctuates so much from day to day, so it’s generally important not to get too caught up in your daily numbers. The 30-day graph is meant to tell you whether or not you’re heading in the right direction of your goals.
This is something you’d normally only see in the companion app, not on the scale itself. I’ve found it’s quite nice to have a quick glance at my weight trend every time I step on the scale in the morning. If I weigh a few pounds more on a certain day but the weight trend tells me I’m heading towards my overall goal, it gives me a little peace of mind.
If you do care about your day-to-day weigh-in changes, the Index S2 has you covered. Above your initials, you’ll see a small number that tells you how your weight compares to your previous weigh-in. If you have an intense workout and lose a lot of water weight, this feature will point you in the right direction as to how much you should rehydrate.
Weigh-in details and Garmin Connect
Once the scale syncs with your Garmin Connect account, your measurements will show up in the Weight section of the Health Stats tab or on your home screen if you’ve enabled the weight widget. You’ll see your current weight, with any weigh-ins for the day below that. Here, you’ll see your weight change, BMI, body fat, skeletal muscle mass, bone mass, and body water percentage. You can delete weigh-ins, too, if you think the scale was off for any reason.
Near the top of the Weight page, you can see your daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly weight trends. All of your averages are displayed below that. You can jump to a specific day’s weigh-in from there if you want more details.
I don’t have a good way of verifying whether or not the Garmin Index S2 is accurate. Perhaps just as important as being accurate is being consistent — which the Index S2 definitely is. I recorded my weight 3-4 times within a few minutes of each other during multiple weigh-in sessions. My results remained consistent in each reading. The only changes I noticed were my weight fluctuating upwards by .1 pounds or my body fat percentage going down by .1%. Really, nothing to complain about here.
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Garmin says it has improved its algorithms for bioelectrical impedance-based metrics such as body fat percentage and muscle mass for improved accuracy and sensitivity with bodily changes. You may notice a change in these metrics if you’re coming from a first-gen Index scale. Both have been consistent in my testing, though again, I don’t have technical equipment or any way to verify the data is accurate. Impedance-based metrics like this should sometimes be taken with a grain of salt, however. They are perhaps best approached by looking at overall trends rather than exact data.
One last detail to mention about Garmin Connect. You can turn off any of the widgets you aren’t interested in tracking. So, if you don’t want to constantly see your BMI, body fat percentage, or bone mass, for instance, you can turn those off for your profile.
Garmin Index S2 Smart Scale specs
|Garmin Index S2 Smart Scale|
|Dimensions and weight||12.6” x 12.2” x 1.1” (320 x 310 x 28mm)|
|Battery life||Up to 9 months|
Uses 4 AAA batteries (included)
Body mass index
Body fat percentage
Skeletal muscle mass
Body water percentage
|Weight limit||400lbs (181.4kg)|
Garmin Index S2 smart scale review: Price and competition
We’ve already alluded to this, but the Garmin Index S2 faces stiff competition in just about all price brackets. The new smart scale competes directly with the Withings Body Plus and Body Cardio smart scales, which cost $100 and $150, respectively. Withings’ scales track most of the same metrics as the Index S2, and the Body Cardio even tracks your heart rate. I also think Withings’ scales are quite pretty, too.
The Fitbit Aria Air is also nice-looking and tracks your weight, BMI, and of course, connects to the Fitbit app. The Eufy Smart Scale P1 and Wyze Scale come in at around $50 and $30, respectively, and have been reviewed well across the internet. They too track weight, BMI, body fat and water percentage, muscle and bone mass, and more. These scales require Bluetooth connections to upload data, however, which can be an annoyance.
Garmin Index S2 smart scale review: The verdict
So, why buy the Garmin Index S2 if there are similar devices that will cost you far less? That’s a good question. The Index S2 offers the convenience of detailed uploads right to your Garmin Connect account. If you’re a dedicated Garmin user, this is the smart scale for you — especially considering not many third-party scales can cleanly upload data to Garmin Connect.
Ultimately, there isn’t much to complain about with the Garmin Index S2. And there shouldn’t be. This is a pretty minor refresh to an already popular product. Just know that if you’re not in the Garmin ecosystem and don’t plan to be any time soon, there are cheaper options out there that might tick all of the boxes for you.