For the past 2 months ++, I’ve been using the Forerunner 235 thanks to Garmin Malaysia!
I’ll just highlight the interesting/useful/useless/fun features that my panda has (which may very well be common features in other models)!
- The WATCH FACE: Yes, you can change the watch face. It is much more interactive compared to the FR225. I chose the cutest, most non-professional looking watch face – My PANDA! People get intrigued by it and I have random people coming up to me asking about my watch! Conversation starter, maybe?
Just a few of the MANY different watch faces.
- Wrist-based Heart Rate sensor: My Panda is the first product from Garmin featuring its own heart rate technology (FR225 was using Mio’s HR technology). So far so good. My heart rate has been quite consistent across all wrist-based heart rate sensors. As with all technology, you cannot expect 100% accuracy. Try not to rely too much on it and ALWAYS trust your efforts. You will know how hard/easy you are running. 😉
Resting Heart Rate at 37!
- The GPS system: The Panda allows you to select between GPS or GPS + GLONASS. Without hesitating, I went for the GPS + GLONASS even though I had NO CLUE what it was! Having a ‘+’ is always a good thing, right? Anyway, I Googled it and GLONASS aka Global Navigation Satellite System is the Russian version of the GPS. This feature increases the accuracy of position and distance (because we all want our paces and distances to be accurate to the T, right?)
- Different modes of activity: You can select between run, run indoor, bike, bike indoor or others. I’m a sucker for maps and I LOVE looking at maps. I like to see where I’ve been. Very pleased to have a GPS watch that can track my other activities: hiking/walking etc JUST so that I can review them later!These were from my hike/walk in Hawaii. You can SEE the AKAKA Falls! HOW COOL IS THAT!
- Satellite capture was a zillion times faster compared to the FR225
- Bluetooth sync with Garmin Connect (smartphone) seemed faster and more sensitive compared to the FR225
- Step counter and calorie counter
- Smart Notifications from your phone when you turn on your bluetoothReceiving whatsapp messages!
- Set several time zones. This came in handy when I went to Hawaii. I wanted to keep track of the Malaysian time.
- Light Weight: This is an EXTREMELY important feature because as runners, any extra weight would mean slower run times, right?! ;P
- Big/wide watch face: Also an important feature because we want to be able to see the details presented AT A GLANCE and not squinting or trying too hard.
- Interchangeable straps: Because we MUST change our watch straps to match our running outfits/shoes. My Panda strap comes in two colours: grey or black. It also comes in red and orange.
- Easy to put on: As runners, we are always rushing out the door because WE CANNOT WAIT TO RUN. So we need to be able to put on our watches as fast as possible. The FR 225 was a little more difficult to slip on. Plus point for the Panda!
- Clip on charger: I know there are many different types of charger heads across the different models. For the Panda, it was a lot easier to toggle compared to the FR 225. No problems with clipping it on!
What do I think?
My Panda is definitely one up from the FR225. I am utterly pleased with all the special features and upgrades that has been added to the Panda.
Okay, I seem to be a little harsh on the FR225. Don’t get me wrong. There is absolutely nothing bad/wrong about the FR225.
But by comparison, I personally prefer the Panda. IF you are just starting out and looking for a BASIC GPS watch, then the FR225 is for you. If you have a little more to spend and want a little more fun features, GET THE FR235! WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR!
Running and tracking has never been easier.
You can get it from most of the Gamin stores in Malaysia at RM1550. 🙂
*Psssst, if you are nice to me, I MIGHT be able to give you a little discount. 😉 T&C apply*
Let me know if you have ANY other questions!