I’ve had this garmin watch for over 2 years now and it has helped me tremendously when it comes to training. It logs all of the information from my run and gives me real time data on my pace as well as having a screen that shows the pace per lap. Also, i can change the lap distance or do manual lapping which is pretty cool. I would recommend putting a screen protector on the front because the screen appears to be some sort of plastic. But i haven’t had any issues with scratching because i had a screen protector on the second i got the watch. These things are basically indestructible and it’s never failed me. I’ve set some nice times on this watch. Also, the garmin connect app allows you to store every run that you’ve done and it saves each and every one of them going back year. So it’s cool to see trends and progressions of how training has impacted my races and what amounts of training seem to be best to get my fastest times.
I wear this watch with every single run. The gps is fast and accurate. The battery life on this is so long lasting. I ran a marathon with the gps on the entire time and still had over a 50% charge. I love how this syncs data to nike+run club so i can use it for my marathon training.
Great watch for both runners and non-runners. There are a lot of reviews about the sports and fitness features, so i will focus on notifications. I was moving from pebble to another watch with notifications. I never found a detailed review or pictures about how the notification function works. There is really nothing complex to explain. You get all the notifications of the iphone on the watch and although it has a limitation in the number of lines, you don’t have to pick the cell phone in 90% of times. Garmin should work to expand the number of lines.
I read several reviews before purchasing this watch. I remember several of the reviews stating issues they didn’t like. One of the issues was that the watch face wasn’t bright enough. I’ve used this watch for about a year now, with all of my tracked workouts being outdoors. I have never had an issue viewing the watch face, regardless of time of day. What i like:-ability to change watch face and layout-accurate gps tracking-creating workouts in connect and uploading to the watch to do-multi-sport tracking (running/walking, cycling, ‘other’)-heart rate strap capable (not sold with the watch)-the smart notification system, but it is not a smartwatch-long battery life (have tracked endurance events for 12+hours without having to recharge it)-data customization (able to change the data screens you are shown during a workout to suit your needs)-lap distance customization-alarms (easy to set, can be vibration only or sound/vibration)functions that annoy me-sometimes the gps takes too long to get your location-the step tracking doesn’t seem accurate. I have a fitbit and this watch. They never match (even within a couple of hundred steps). -after a few charges, the watch will only charge to 99% no matter how long you charge it (this was mentioned in other reviews, even before i bought it. It isn’t a huge thing, just somewhat annoying.
I’ve had this for over a year and it’s never gave me any trouble. I use it for hiking, running, and biking. I’ve done up to all day hikes in the rocky mountains, and this thing was super accurate on location and the battery never gave out. If i’m not using the gps, the watch will run for a couple weeks or more. When the battery looks low, i can easily still take a run or a bike ride with no concern of shutting down. This will quickly connect to the garmin connect applicaiton after a training session with the gps, and from that app, it pushes to strava for me. It’s a great starter watch for training. Not too busy to be confusing, but strong enough to be very useful. I wear this as my daily watch and have since i purchased it over a year ago, and it shows no sign of degrading.
The aesthetics are great and it is wearable for work and activity. I like the app/widget to download to change the watchface. It connects easily with bluetooth and gps. Battery is still going strong for 3 days and that is with using bluetooth, syncing, and without bluetooth at night and during activity. Takes about 6-8 hours to become intuitive with it in regards to getting the garmin express app on computer but the mobile app is helpful to update settings on the go with bluetooth connected. I am disappointed it didn’t have a walking activity profile on it for one of the default activities but i was able to figure out how to add an activity app for hiking and walking which is very nice. I like the training calendar. I like that it connects and uploads my workouts to maymyrun. I don’t like the default names it gives my workouts when posting to garmin connect and mapmyrun which leaves me editing the description of activity everytime.
Update: after 6 months of almost continuous use (i run about every other day) this is still by far the best running watch i have owned. The display is clear and customizable, it’s light, and it just has the best user interface ever – it’s simply intuitive. The range of functionality provided meets my needs. If i lost this one, i’d buy another in a second. —-i am very impressed by this watch – it works great and is nearly perfect. I’ve been using garmin fr 201/305 and the 310 xt most recently, i’m going to compare this to my most recent model, the 310. First of all, and most relevant for running, the watch locks into the gps signal very very fast. With the 310 i’d have to wait several minutes to get a signal, with the 230 it takes a few seconds and i’m ready to go. Also, the 230 a fantastic, clear and easy to read, screen, esp while running. Battery life is amazing, as is the functionality. Best of all, the interface is truly intuitive and consistent making this watch easy to use. Additionally you can customize this the watch with additional software (widgets etc). Also, it’s ridiculously light-weight, esp compared to the 310. It’s also my daily watch for now, that’s how much i enjoy wearing it.
Key specs for Garmin Forerunner 230 – Black/White:
- AUDIO PROMPTS – Receive audio prompts from your connected smartphone that include laps and lap times.
- LARGER SCREEN – A 44% larger screen than the 220 but the same physical size.
- BATTERY LIFE – Longer battery life than the 220, 16 hours in training mode and up to 5 weeks in watch mode6.
- SMART NOTIFICATIONS – See incoming email, text messages, call alerts, calendar reminders and more from your compatible smartphone.
- ACTIVITY TRACKING – Forerunner 230 doubles as a watch and activity tracker. Count steps, calories and distance throughout the day. The move bar with vibration alert motivates you to move when you’ve been sitting too long.
Comments from buyers
“I am pretty unhappy with its ability to show the pace at
, Great Watch with Great Extras!
, My best Garmin watch so far!
Battery life for me has been very good. Easy to use, easy to live with. Gives me the option of tracking runs without carrying my phone. Smart notifications are very handy. Step counter seems accurate enough. Silent alarms have been good for my marriage. I should have bought one of these a long time ago. At the risk of sounding like i’m overselling it, this watch has improved my daily life. Granted, they’re tiny improvements, but observable improvements nevertheless.
It was really easy to program and use right out of the box, and while sporty looking, i love the look of it and wear it every day. It syncs beautifully with the garmin connect app. The only thing i’m struggling with is the treadmill running function: the distance covered based on the treadmill is way off what the watch says i am covering. I need to figure out which machine is wrong distance – the treadmill or the watch.
Great watch for keeping track of current mph or pace during your run, which was the primary reason for buying this. The gps helps keep better track of these elements as well. Great bluetooth connection to iphone 6s for receiving, checking, and clearing any notifications. The garmin app for your phone, which the watch connects to and syncs with via bluetooth, works seamlessly with ua’s myfitness pal app for calorie counting and exercise tracking. The watch was a little bigger than i expected (for a small female wrist), but i got used to it immediately. However, i find it slightly uncomfortable to wear while sleeping. The face size is about relative to a silver dollar coin i think. It has great features like ‘do not disturb’, ‘move’. Reminders, and daily adaptive step goals that are realistic for your typical activity levels per day of the week (rather than a straight goal of 10,000 steps per day). Recommend highly over fitbit.
I was looking for an exercise watch that i could also use as a smart watch as opposed to vice versa. After a month, i think this is the one. What i like so far: it has excellent battery life (i’m getting around 7-10 days with almost daily use of the gps); it is actually waterproof (not water resistant); the watch face stays on and you don’t have to deal with the wrist turn to see the time; the watch is light-weight; it has an excellent step-counter; there are multiple watch faces that you can download; i like that the weather forecast is only two buttons away. What i don’t like: it loses connectivity to blue-tooth periodically and i have yet to figure out why. So far, i would definitely recommend.
I only have one problem with this watch and i have worn it daily since christmas 2016 but it still gets 5 stars because i freakin love this watch. The only problem i have is with the stupid move alert going off at random times. Yes even when i am moving, running, swimming, sitting, it doesn’t matter what i am doing it will just go off. My gf has the same watch and does not have this problem so it is probably just some stupid little glitch in mine. Still it is my favorite fitness watch to date.
I’ve been using a forerunner 310xt for cycling and running the last few years. It’s been great as a workout watch, but way too big and clunky to use as a regular watch. It is quick to acquire satellite signal, pairs to speed and cadence sensors well, and transfers data seamlessly to my phone. My only complaint has been adjusting to only 3 data fields per screen instead of 4 while cycling. But the trade off of activity and sleep tracking makes the loss of a data field worth it. Great for activity tracking.
For the price this guy is perfect if you are just a runner. I bought this for my sister. I own a 920xt for my triathlon training. I prefer having the heart rate monitor separate from the watch. Optical heart rate sensors are generally less accurate than the chest straps and if you are going to use a optical heart rate sensor the best one on the market at the moment from an accuracy standpoint seems to be the schoche rythm. With all that in mind, my sister has been using this daily for about a month and has been extremely happy with it.
I used to have a 310xt and always thought ‘it would be nice if you could use this as a regular watch’. The watch is stylish, and the functionality is top notch. The battery life is excellent, as it will go about a week or longer with no gps usage. I have used the gps a few times for bike rides and runs and the battery will still last up to a week. The smart notifications are very useful. I can sort through my calendar events, and the text and other notifications are helpful as i don’t need to pull my phone out of my pocket to check notifications. Using the watch i can quickly see what the notification is and whether it is something i need to respond to right away or if i can wait. This helps lower the time i spend on my cell phone and be more present with my family.
Husband bought this to help with weight loss, running, and activity and seems to really like the watch. Fit is good, he’s a smaller guy and it doesn’t overwhelm his arm. He showers in it daily, no issues with water. His favorite features seem to be the step counter and the sleep tracker. Holds a charge for about 3 days of use before he needs to charge it.
I have been looking for gps watch for long time and found this one for $175 during thanksgiving time. It only requires installation of garmin connect in your mobile app and pairing with bluetooth. Synching to the garmin connect was super quick and automatic. Battery comes for almost a week and it all depends on the usage. I haven’t used much of the other controls. But so far its showing accurate readings of my running and other exercise activities.
I’m very happy with this watch so far. I replaced the band with a metal band and it looks much more dressy. Before this watch i had a pebble classic. I got sick of not being able to reliably start my runs with the pebble/ismoothrun. It’s so nice to be at a race and not need to fiddle around with a running app and then not know if the app/watch would still be communicating by the time the race starts. With the garmin i just hit the start button and it starts 100% of the time. The acuricy of the gps on the garmin is much better than the iphone 7. My pace is more solid unlike the iphone apps. The only downside is it doesn’t work as well in urban areas where there are lots of buildings blocking the sky. For example one of my routes goes under a bridge for about 80secs and on the iphone it had no problem but on the garmin it has me at a complete standstill for 80secs which shaves off 0.
This is my first running watch. My first impression when i strapped it on my wrist was that the screen was too dim. The face is highly readable in sunlight, and the push button light is passable (though ugly), in the dark, but it isn’t what i expected. But that is something i can understand and live with, given the long battery life that this watch affords. Using the watch for running drains the battery a bit, but unless you are using the watch to track 10+ hours of workout activity in a day, you won’t have to charge it more than once per day. If you use it like i do, running for an hour or two, 3-4 times per week, it will probably last about a week before it needs a charge. I really appreciate the fact that you can customize the watch to make it your own, both through built-in functionality and the extra configurability provided by the connect iq apps. There are limited memory slots, but you can install apps, widgets, watch faces, and data fields to improve the functionality and style of the watch. For example, i use the configurable sc8 watch face, which shows a lot of information in addition to the time, and it makes the overall experience of using the watch better. (the nerd in me liked the fact that there is a back to the future watch screen that looks like the dashboad of the delorean.
If you are interested in this i’ll help you with my honest thoughts about it. I been using it for a while now ( since june 2016) and these are my thoughts. I’m sorry if you encounter any grammar errors, i speak spanish. * gps accuracy is great, never had any issues with it. * it’s not too big for a man, but for women i will recommend something smaller, i have a small wrist and is comfortable enough to wear it while sleeping. * although is all plastic it is very durable, so far no scratches on plastic nor the screen, but i did notice some bubbles like water spots on the windshield of a car, but this is hardly noticeable and can be avoided with a screen protector. * software updates are frequent, this is something that adds value to a product, letting you know that the manufacturer care about its product and customers even after the purchase. So far i’ve received 3 or 4 updates, and one major update to version 5. * garmin connect iq app store is growing fast, with almost all programmers who are passionate runners you will find various watch faces to try out and data fields that are much better than default. * garmin connect, has everything you need, compared with runtastic,sports tracker, nike+ the only thing you will miss is your friends, because they have to own a garmin product like you. * waterproof, you can wear it in the shower with no issues. * battery is great, you can forget about charging it a whole week, this is the main reason to chose this over the fr 235.
I’m just getting back into running, so i’m very aware of my pace. Even if i don’t want to wait the extra few seconds for a link to the satellite to establish fully, this watch starts measuring my pace as soon as i hit ‘go’. I was also pleasantly surprised as its ability to track cycling and indoor running. Also, it can sync with my phone.
I had used a forerunner 110 and a soleus gps fit over the past 3 1/2 yrs. The fr 230 is a noticeable improvement over both of them. The current pace updates quickly when accelerating, the 3-line display is easy to read, the operating buttons are intuitive, battery life is very good. Well worth the cost of upgrading.
For starters, i’m a runner so any additional activities (biking, walking, whatever) that this watch tracks are just bonus to me and there are certainly quite a few of them. Also, i can’t speak to the vo2 and fitness testing since i don’t have a hr monitor but i definitely like the option. I got this garmin after researching some of the other ‘smart watches’ available at the time (main competitors were fitbit surge, garmin vivofit and microsoft band2) and hearing a lot of positive feedback about garmin in general from fellow runners (they do make some pretty solid gps navigation for cars so i figured it would translate for running watches too). I didn’t care much for a watch with hr monitoring built in (see garmin 235) as the technology still seems a bit fluky and judging by the gnarly pictures of skin irritation, that concept still seems to have a ways to go. All of that led to choosing this bad boy and i could not be happierthe watch itself is much lighter than i expected for a gps watch so i barely notice it’s there and it looks great. I really like the color screen and even though the pictures do make it seem a lot brighter than it actually is, the watch face is not hard to read unless you’re in low lighting (in which case quit complaining and hit the light button). There are tons of customizable watch faces, apps and widgets (check out the punisher watch face in the picture). The gps itself connects super quick (thanks to the glonass) and on average it usually takes about 3 seconds to find satellites after hitting the start button. The controls are pretty easy to use and after tinkering with it for a day or two i had it figured out. I haven’t let it run the battery all the way down to 0 but from a full charge to around 30% usually takes 2 weeks (this was with utilizing the gps during my runs 5 times a week varying from 4 to 10 miles) and it usually takes me about an hour to charge back to 100%.
I bought this watch primarily to track my running. I love the bluetooth function and display. It’s the perfect watch for me as a beginner/intermediate runner who has done a half marathon and is training for a marathon. I love that it also connects to myfitnesspal. The biking tracker was an additional selling point, but lately it has not been working to track the distance of my biking. I should probably just suck it up and call customer service — but it was disappointing that it stopped working after a couple weeks (i assume it may be a user error, to be honest. )i wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this watch to a person who has been running for 2-5 years and falls in the middle of the pack. It’s a step up from some of the cheaper garmin models, but still user friendly.
This has been a really great addition to my life. It’s not cumbersome by any means. Being able to get a super mario background on it adds such a really great personal touch to it, seeing as i have a tattoo sleeve dedicated to a mario theme. It’s wonderful how well it tracks my activity and is so clean/simple to use. There’s a lot of great tools and functions i just don’t use, but would be super helpful for folks who are more serious. Gps works amazing for my runs outside, which is really great. I love seeing the progress i make in real time.
For the past couple years i have used the garmin forerunner 210, it was my first running watch and was quite basic. Recently decided it was time for a new watch and doing a lot of research decided to go with this one. The 210 took forever to find a signal especially in big cities, ran a half marathon in november and it took 10 min to find a signal and lucky found it right as i went over the starting line. This 230 watch though finds it in seconds, which is very helpful, also another helpful thing that is taking some getting used to is the continuous reading of what your current pace is. My old watch would update what your current mile pace was so if you could not tell your exact mile pace at the end only the average of what it had been for the whole mile. The bluetooth upload is great always had issues getting the other watch to connect to couter to uplaod, seems to be a great product for the limited time and use i have put in so far and hoping it will help with my training for my first marathon.
My use: my primary use has been to track my marathon training and allow me to see my pace during runs. The watch is so comfortable though that i’ve worn it essentially 100% of the time for the past 15 months aside from when i slept. Pros: easy to use interface. Easy integration with strava. Cons: bluetooth connection is spotty. I occasionally have had to turn off the watch and/or my phone to connect the bluetooth. Now after 15 months of use the bluetooth is completely not showing up on any device. Luckily i can still upload my activities manually by connecting to a computer. Also i’ve been running in the single digits this winter and the phone does eventually turn off because it can’t handle the cold. I’ve had to start wearing the watch under my sleeves to keep the electronics warm.
Purchased as gift for my wife. Why it works as advertised and instrucrtions and functions easy to understand and operate. Which for 55+ marathoner is key.
I debated a lot on whether to buy this or the 235 with the heart monitor and the end decided on this and the garmin hrm-run monitor. I am very happy with my selection. As mentioned by previous reviews the screen is not very bright, but i don’t have any problem with it brightness during my outdoor workouts, and in fact neither when i am inside. The battery is excellent: i run 6days about an hour to an 1. 5 hours with the watch paired with the hr on the sport mode then i locked the screen and by day 7th and the battery still at about 47-53% this is unlike my fitbit hr which i needed to recharged every other day. By not having the hr monitor i have gain days and days of battery life which is a good trade in my opinion. Now, the gaminconnect app is not as good as the fitbit, but that a doesn’t have anything to do with this watch. Gps work great and i like the fact that i can also do indoor running. The only thing i wish is for it to have a walking option, since somethings i go for long hikes and using the ‘other’ doesn’t capture the distance travelled.
The forerunner 230 and 235 are the best intermediate gps running watches on the market. I personally have the 230, which is the same as the 235 sans the wrist based hr sensor, i decided to go with the 230 and the heart rate chest strap because of the huge battery life discrepancy between the two. The 235 will give you about 3-5 days, whereas the 230 will give you about 7-10 days. The watch is very lightweight as it is made out of plastic, but it does no feel cheap. It is very comfortable to wear (i also use it as an activity tracker/everyday watch and even sleep with it), the strap stay has a plastic tooth like piece which keeps it from loosening when using it. As a running watch this where the forerunner 230/235 really glows, it records all the information you need and displays it in a very straightforward way, i personally love the fact that i can edit the screen to show up to 4 data fields at once. This means that i pretty much have all the information i need in two screens (first data screen i have the distance, timer, pace and heart rate and the second data screen i have the avg pace, lap time, lap pace and number of laps). There’s a third screen when i pair it with the hr chest strap which shows all the hr data. Lastly, there are some smart notifications built in like text alerts and phone call alerts, you cannot answer from the watch but a least you see the information there. Overall i am very happy with the forerunner 230, i will say that if you are looking for a smartwatch/activity tracker this is not it.
I’ve been using this for a little over a year now, so i think it’s ok to write a review now. In my experience, this is a valuable training tool for runners because it accurately records (more than 99% of the time it is used) the distance one runs, gives accurate mile splits and handles the record keeping for training. These are big, important positive features. In addition, its data mining of users does not appear to be too intrusive (though i admittedly don’t use the product’s website to ‘list my gear’ or do any sort of social networking activities). Using the device does not seem to result in me being bombarded with advertisements the way my fitbit-wearing friends are. However, this device purports to offer more than it can really provide, which can sometimes be inconvenient and interfere with training. Specifically, i am pretty unhappy with its ability to show the pace at which one is running as one runs. I run on a rail trail in the new york city suburbs (north county rail trail in westchester), and this trail has quite a bit of overhead tree cover. The garmin routinely becomes inaccurate (1-2 min. Off actual pace usually) when i am under the tree cover, and then appears to give falsely high speeds to catch up as i close in on a mile marker.
Worked just how i thought it would. Has helped a lot getting more dialed in to improving my times. Easy to use, after a couple of days you get the hang of how to maneuver from one screen to the next. No problems with getting it to sync with garmin connect.Easy to change watch face also. Some have complained about the face being hard to read, i just set it to brighten when you turn your wrist and very easy to view. All in all great aid to help me with my run training.
I wear this everyday, even when i am not running or exercising. It does a wide variety of tracking, including steps, pace, distance, time, and location. I’ve used this watch mostly for running and i actually snap it to my bike as well. It also gets notifications (text, calls, voicemails, etc) from your phone via blutooth. The only thing i don’t like about it is that it doesn’t seem to pair correctly with my phone. It has features like ‘find my phone’ or ‘weather’ that constantly states app connection required, yet i am able to get all the other notifications. No heart rate monitor either.
I’ve had the watch about a month now, no complaints. It has a nice weigh, quality look and lots of apps. I charge mine about every two weeks. As far as step count accuracy compared to my old fit bit charge, the 230 is about 40% more accurate.