After popping up a few weeks early on Garmin's own website - and being promptly pulled down - the Garmin Forerunner 645 Music has now been officially announced.
Verdict: Garmin Forerunner 645 Music review
But what else is packed inside the new Garmin watch? And when can you expect it to land? Well, read on below for everything you need to know.
Garmin Forerunner 645 Music - Design
From a design perspective, the Forerunner 645 Music is very similar to the Vivoactive 3, weighing in at 42g with a stainless steel bezel and featuring 20mm quick release silicone watch bands.
It's no surprise to hear that like other Forerunners, it has a waterproof rating of 5ATM, meaning you can wear it during your shower or swim and don't have to worry about it dying on your wrist. And in terms of the screen specs, you can expect a 1.2-inch, 240 x 240 transflective display - very similar to what's packed onto the Forerunner 935.
There's a heart rate monitor on board with built-in GPS/GLONASS to track your activities. The other usual suspects are also present, including a barometric altimeter, compass and thermometer; activity tracking features like the Move bar and auto goal modes are here too.
Garmin Forerunner 645 Music: Fitness and sports tracking
Indoor and outdoor running, cycling and swimming (pool only) will provide the core sports tracking modes like they do on the Vivoactive 3, with profiles also included for outdoor sports like skiing and rowing.
The handy Training Status, Training Effect and Training Load features found on higher-end Forerunner devices, for aiding recovery between workouts, make the cut, too. And these are backed up by the usual running measurements, such as cadence, stride length, ground contact time and balance, vertical oscillation and vertical ratio. The watch will also track gym workouts and strength training (via rep counting).
Garmin Forerunner 645 Music: Smartwatch and music features
In terms of smartwatch features, it has everything we've seen on Garmin's other recent devices, including Connect IQ support, the ability to respond to notifications and, of course, control over those tunes. Meanwhile, seven days of battery life in smartwatch mode and five hours in GPS mode (with music playback) give it more bragging rights over high-end smartwatches.
Garmin says there's enough storage to load on 500 songs, or download playlists from "select" streaming services for offline listening, which currently consists of just iHeartRadio (although Deezer is said to be coming soon). You can then pair Bluetooth headphones just like you can on an Apple Watch, TomTom's sports watches and the Fitbit Ionic.
The watch also comes with Garmin Pay, making it the second watch to support the company's wearable payment service. Garmin Pay debuted on the Vivoactive 3 back at IFA 2017, and while we liked the feature, the lack of music storage on the device itself made the inclusion a little strange, as we still had to take along our phone.
Garmin Forerunner 645 Music: Price and release date
As with most of Garmin's high-end smartwatches, the Forerunner 645 Music won't come cheap. If you're interested in picking one up, though, the standard version of the watch will be available with a black or a cerise band for $449.99, with the version without music storage - and your choice of black or sandstone band - for $399.99.
There's no specific date pinned for the watch's release, but Garmin's website currently indicates it will drop during Q1 2018 - so that's any time before the end of March.
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