TomTom Runner vs Garmin Forerunner 10 – A Quick Review

So long FR10, its sold. My first day with the TomTom Runner, its a loaner from my wife. Going through it yesterday was a revelation of sorts. Here’s a comparison of the TomTom Runner as an entry level watch vs the Garmin Forerunner 10:

TomTom Runner vs Garmin Forerunner 10

tomtom_runner

The Positives

  • It has twice the battery life (10 hours)
  • 3 data fields on screen versus 2 on Garmin FR 10 (out of which the central one can be rotated at will during the run in between about 8-10 different stat fields)
  • A nice lap alert with buzz which was missing on my FR10
  • Ability to do intervals (warmup, N repeats of work + rest, and cool down)
  • Can show my stride rate (i.e. Cadence) after the run via a built in accelerometer, no chest strap or pedometer needed. This is a big plus, since I am focussed on improving it from a lowly 150-155 last year at 2014 Hyderabad Marathon, and am up to about 170 now, a huge improvement.
  • Has QuickGPSfix technology, which helps your watch get a GPS fix in 2-3 seconds (yes, verified and true), against the usual 2-3 mins or sometimes endless wait for GPS lock
  • Sync data wirelessly online via bluetooth, no connecting to the laptop anymore (though I am having trouble with this on my Nexus 5, on which it is supposed to happen automatically whenever the watch is within 10 meters of the phone. What I have to do to make it to work is to go into the phone and watch menus and repeat the setup steps)
  • Has HRM option unlike FR10
  • Lot more runner oriented functionality which I am yet to try, zones, racing against your previous time, etc
  • At $99 vs $94 (or so) for FR10, beats the Garmin hands down on features/$

The Negatives:
– I am used to Garmin connect website, better layout. But, I can live with that, not a big negative

Unknown for now:
– Distance/pace accuracy. Though I am not expecting any surprises there. Update: after a few runs (about 75km) I am fairly confident that distance/pace reporting is consistent and good.

Final Thoughts:

The perfect entry level watch for beginners at this price point. Period.

I am waiting excitedly for the next Garmin launch. Definitely giving the FR25 the pass. Its a step-up for FR10/15 users, but not by much.

Check out the TomTom Runner on Amazon India website.

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