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Garmin introduces Forerunner 30, reduced performance for a more affordable price


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Garmin surprises us today with the presentation of a new model. And it does so not because of its performance or new features, but quite the opposite. You probably need to get back on track, because Garmin has indeed fallen back on the model number. And the fact is that last year we already had the Garmin Forerunner 35 entre nosotros y ahora han decidido presentar el Forerunner 30… extraño, lo sé. Y no, no he rescatado un artículo de hace un año, es un producto «nuevo» aunque parezca ser exactamente el mismo.

So... if it's the same as last year's and it's called something else... what's the difference? Good question. The FR30 starts from FR35 Garmin has decided to reduce its performance even further and, in turn, reduce the price.

Differences between Garmin Forerunner 30 and Forerunner 35

Contrariamente a lo que suele ocurrir en estos casos en los que te especifico cuál es el modelo base y qué es lo que se añade sobre él, el caso de hoy es todo lo contrario. El Forerunner 30 es la versión «lite» de un reloj que ya de por sí no cuenta con muchas prestaciones. Es decir, como si a una Coca Cola Light le quitamos el azúcar…

These are the functions that Forerunner 30 does NOT have (and that are present in Forerunner 35 from a year ago).

  • Interval training mode: NO
  • Running/Starting mode: NO
  • Virtual Pacer Mode: NO
  • Support for external sensors: NO
  • Possibility of transmitting heart rate by ANT+: NO
  • Widget with weather forecast: NO
  • Music control on the phone: NO
  • Activity profiles in addition to career: NO
  • Heart rate, time, distance, or calorie alerts: NO
  • Clock display customization: NO

At this point the question remains... would you recommend this watch? NOT.

I don't see the point. The Forerunner 35 is a basic watch that bases the entire wearing experience on simplicity. It's not overly functional or complicated to wear, even for those who are more technologically challenged. There's nothing new, not even a design innovation, or the addition of the revamped optical sensor with improved performance. Well, there's a purple strap now and the turquoise color is slightly darker.

Garmin Forerunner 30

The only objective of the Forerunner 30 is to be able to compete with more economical models, such as the Polar M200. Y para hacerlo, ¿no sería más práctico reducir el precio del Forerunner 35? Evidentemente el coste de producción del nuevo modelo es cero. Simplemente se prepara un nuevo packaging y se carga el software con prestaciones reducidas en algunas unidades en la cadena de montaje, y «voilá», tenemos un reloj nuevo.

I would only see some logic if it was a model destined for the American market. In the United States it is not like here, where each seller can set the price of a product freely. There the brand sets the price and it remains unchanged except for VERY occasional discounts or loyalty programs. But the strange thing is that the FR30 is a model that for the moment will only be sold in Europe and for the moment will not be taken to the USA.

Esto nos puede llevar a que sea incluso posible que veamos el Forerunner 35 incluso más barato que el Forerunner 30, ya que el primero lleva un año en el mercado mientras que el FR30 es «novedad». Y no es que Garmin haya decidido ponerle un precio de derribo, al contrario. Su PVP de lanzamiento es 149€, cuando today it is possible to buy the FR35 for 159


Really, if you're looking for a simple, easy-to-use watch, discard Forerunner 30 (unless you find it under $100) and go straight to the originally designed model with all its features intact.

And with that... thanks for reading!

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  1. I've been using the FR35, almost a year now and the truth is that it's very good as a basic watch, only because of the loss that it means not having a bike or walking profile, or the interval training (even if it's basic), makes this watch not very recommendable, and more so when the FR35 I've seen it in some punctual offer at 130 ?.

    1. That's right, I don't think it's very complicated to find the complete model that is cheaper than the lighter one, and if it's more expensive, the price difference doesn't compensate for the loss of performance either.

  2. Otro caso. Si no me confundo el vivoactive hr tiene gps, natación en piscina, pero no natación en aguas abiertas. Pinta que sea simplemente una cuestión de software. Vamos, que posiblemente no tiene natación en aguas abiertas porque no han querido ponérsela y así discrimarlo de otros modelos superiores.


    1. Many times the differences are due to external developments from other companies, and they have to pay royalties for each unit sold that equips a function. It is not always a matter of cutting software to protect the superior model.

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