​Garmin Forerunner 735XT multisport GPS watch swims, bikes and runs

New addition to Forerunner family adds optical HR but slashes battery life
​Garmin Forerunner 735XT is a GPS ironman

Garmin has just dropped another new GPS watch, the Forerunner 735XT, an all-star sports watch for triathlon and ironman fanatics.

The watch is aimed at runners, swimmers and cyclists, and drops in next to the two-year-old Forerunner 920XT, which stays on sale. Like the 920XT, the new 735XT offers in-depth run analytics including VO2 max, cadence and race predictors, advanced swimming stats including stroke detection for pool and open water. What's more, it's compatible with the company's Vector cycling sensors for added data.

Wareable verdict: Garmin Forerunner 735XT review

However, it adds the company's Elevate optical heart rate sensor which makes it debut on the XT range, and of course, you can add a chest strap via ANT+ if you wish.

The 735XT comes in the new form factor enjoyed by all new Forerunners, and is visually identical to the flagship running watch the Forerunner 630.

It's not just running, cycling and swimming that's catered for. The 735XT also supports hiking, XC skiing, strength training, paddle sports, and uses Connect IQ to add niche activities designed by third party developers.

So the Forerunner 735XT is now the best Garmin watch to buy if you're a multisport enthusiast, right? Well, there is one downside.


For some reason the battery life falls far short of the 920XT. The Forerunner 735XT boasts 24 hours of UltraTrac (the low power GPS mode for walking) with 14 hours of standard GPS with optical HR. It will last 11 days just as a watch.

While those are great numbers, the older 920XT will last 24 hours in normal GPS mode and 40 hours in low power UltraTrac. That's a huge difference. So essentially you'll need to pick between optical HR and double battery life, given that both devices are set to cost $449.

The Garmin Forerunner 735XT is available now and we will be putting it through its paces in the coming weeks.

Garmin Forerunner 735XT
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3 Comments

  • exxxpresso says:

    No music function!

    Can't buy it :(

    • Commenter says:

      No serious person trains with music

  • jaygaffey says:

    I bought a Forerunner 735XT from Garmin on Friday to use for the Ultra Trail Australia 100km trail run.

    Pros: It was very compact, user friendly and comfortable with a colour screen.

    Cons: It was useless!! The distances were out by nearly 30km, (and those of you who do endurance sports will understand how annoying looking at the wrong distance for hours on end can be), and the battery ran flat at 17 hours even though it was on the ultra track setting that was meant to last for 40hours.

    I called Garmin, and after 20 mins of waiting on the phone, they told me I needed to download the updates (on their new watch), and try it again.

    This watch clearly has some serious gremlins to iron out. Don’t touch it with a barge pole!

    AND it’s not cheap

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