Garmin Forerunner 35 – Product Review
The Garmin Forerunner 35 GPS running watch allows you to stay connected by sharing your fitness progress. Both stylish and easy to use, it helps you track your heart rate without the need for a heart rate strap monitor. Not only does it track your performance data, but it also tracks location, speed, distance and lets you easily control your music.
With an updated high-resolution display that works well indoors and outdoors, the Garmin Forerunner 35 is a top-of-the-line activity tracker that will help you reach your goals.
Our in-depth Garmin Forerunner 35 review below will dive into much more detail so you can be confident in your purchase.
To see our picks for the top heart rate monitors on the market, click here.
- Good price for the list of features
- Has heart rate monitoring and GPS built-in
- Tracks interval training
- The user can control playback of music on their phone
- The waterproof properties allows the wearer to go underwater
- Battery has a long life
- GPS sometimes takes a while to turn on or doesn't turn on at all
- Does not track swimming
- Heart rate monitor could have better accuracy
- Some testers found that the software has compatibility issues with their phone
Cyclers can use it with cadence sensors and a footpad, but the main purpose of this watch is running. The watch is also certified waterproof up to 50 meters, although it doesn't track swimming.
These stats can be tracked for personal use or be used to share and compete with others.
Other features include a built-in GPS to track speed, distance, and location; vibration alerts for texts, activity tracking, pacing progress, milestones, prompts, and notifications; and connectivity to a smartphone for playing music, receiving push notifications, updating software, and uploading data.
We've also reviewed the Garmin HRM PRO, so make sure you check it out as well.
Some reviewers noted that the heart rate monitor does not have high accuracy: its averages seem right, but the current heart rates can be high or low at times, especially when the watch first starts tracking it. The sleep tracker will track sleep well during the night, but it will register as a peaceful sleep when the watch is off, which isn't accurate.
The connectivity also allows the wearer to participate in competitions with friends and family. Connecting to the smartphone can also pull up weather data such as the current weather, the day's high, low, and the chance of rain by the hour.
Stats can be broken by day or by activity (cycling, running, steps). Some testers found that the software has compatibility issues with their phone, but most people did not seem to have this problem. The app's interface has a simple style that is easy to navigate.
The band is both durable and flexible, so it stays comfortable for a long time. The lightweight allows the watch to be worn comfortably without continually rolling around the wrist or weighing down the wearer. The buttons on the sides are comfortable to press and easy to use.
There are covers and cases available for added protection, and vendors offer 2- and 3-year accident protection warranties with the purchases. The app and software also have automatic updates to fix bugs and compatibility issues.
The screen size is 128x128 pixels, which is not a very sharp resolution compared to phones, tablets, or desktops, although it seems okay because the watch itself is small, and it is more evident than previous editions. It's prone to getting fingerprint smudges even though it's not a touchscreen, so wearers should be careful to try not to touch the screen.
Ease of Use
It lacks a touchscreen but is easy to navigate through the stats by using the four buttons on the sides. The top-left button operates the backlight for nighttime visibility, different tracking modes, or preserving the battery.
The bottom left button works as a back button and leads to milestones and a tracking page, adjusts settings, and sets alarms. The button on the top right allows different tracking modes for cycling, walking, indoor or outdoor running, and cardio. The bottom right button scrolls through notifications, rest heart rate, active minutes, calorie burn, step counts, weather and previous workout data. It can also control the playback of smartphone music.
The back of the watch monitors the wearer's heart rate using the Elevate heart rate sensor, and the watch itself has a 5ATM waterproof rating for up to 50 meters, although it does not track swimming.
Garmin's watches generally have long battery lives, and the Garmin Forerunner 35 battery lasts for nine days when the GPS is turned off or 13 hours if the GPS is on for tracked running.
For example, losing the heart rate monitor will save up to $90; color display and Connect IQ add $10 to the price; and adding a lactate threshold, advanced dynamics, and strava suffer score will double the cost of the watch.
The apps allow the user to upload data, compete with friends, and track activities and milestones. The watch is also compatible with a heart rate strap in case someone needs extra accuracy in their heart rate monitoring data. Cyclers can use a cadence sensor and a footpad with this watch.
- Updated high resolution display works well both indoors and outdoors
- Vibration alerts notify the user of smart notifications, activity milestones, running prompts, and progress of virtual pacing
- Smart connectivity automatically uploads data to Garmin Connect, provides smart notifications, controls music, and automatically updates
- Heart Rate Monitoring uses Garmin Elevate technology to track the wearer's heart 24/7 and does not need an extra strap
- Built-in GPS quickly acquires satellites to track distance, speed, and location, without requiring the use of a phone
- Tracks activities all day, counting steps, intensity minutes, and calories, and reminds the wearer when it's time to move
It can also track sleep and go underwater. Users can check the weather, set goals, and enter competitions with friends and family. They can also connect with their phone for music playback, push notifications, and more.
The price is reasonable for the features it has, so new runners can start with this watch and get an upgraded one down the road if they need extra features. The Garmin Forerunner 35 also works well with some accessories which can be helpful for runners with different needs, such as more accurate heart rate monitoring, and activities, such as cycling.
The connectivity is decent, especially after the first use, and the accuracy is comparable to other fitness watches, especially after the first few minutes. It is also easy to use, very comfortable to wear, and comes in different strap colors.
Overall, the Garmin Forerunner 35 has many useful features for tracking and improving one's fitness level.