Garmin announces solar powered Instinct and Fenix 6, Fenix 6S

By Swapnil Mathur | Published on 11 Jul 2020
HIGHLIGHTS

Garmin brings Solar charging to Instinct, Fenix 6 and Tactix Delta.

Garmin claims virtually endless battery life on the Instinct Solar.

India launch of Instinct Solar and Fenix 6 Solar yet to be announced.

Garmin announces solar powered Instinct and Fenix 6, Fenix 6S
Garmin announces solar powered Instinct and Fenix 6, Fenix 6S

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Last year, Garmin had introduced its first solar powered fitness watch, the fēnix 6X - Pro Solar, promising significantly extended battery life. Garmin has now brought solar charging to their adventure-centric fitness watches; the Intinct, Taxtic Delta and the fēnix 6 Pro and the fēnix 6S. The new solar edition of each of the watches also incorporate a number of new features, not available in their non-solar counterparts.

Garmin Instinct Solar Features

Garmin has launched three Solar variants of the Instinct; Instinct Solar, Instinct Solar – Surf Edition and Instinct Solar – Tactical Edition. The Surf Edition coms with surfing-specific features such as tide data and dedicated surfing activity tracking alongside being able to track other water sports. The surf Edition is rated for water resistance up to 100 meters. The Tactical Edition of Instinct Solar is equipped with features such as night-vision goggle compatibility and a Stealth mode, which prevents storage and sharing of all GPS and wireless activity. Features that are common to all three new Solar Editions of the Garmin Instinct include the use of Garmin ELEVATE optical heart rate sensor, adding the ability to measure PulseOX. The non-solar Garmin Instinct does not come with a pulse oximeter and hence, is not capable of deriving a user’s VO2-Max. The Instict Solar variants also incorporate a newer GPS module designed specifically for lower power use, and combined with the solar charging, Garmin claims that users can expect upto 24 days in smartwatch mode indoors and more than 50 days with sufficient solar exposure.

fēnix 6 Series - Solar Editions

The fēnix 6 series consists of three primary models, the fēnix 6, fēnix 6S and the fēnix 6X. The 6X model got Solar earlier last year, and since Garmin managed to do a good job with that, the other two models are also getting Solar charging capabilities. The Solar edition of the fēnix smartwatches are not available with the Sapphire glass and all feature Maps, Music and Wi-Fi capabilities. The new Solar edition of the fēnix 6 and fēnix 6S also include new tracking features such as those for indoor climbing, surf and mountain biking. The fēnix 6S Pro Solar battery performance in smartwatch mode is up to nine days indoors and up to 10.5 days with sufficient solar exposure, while battery performance for the fēnix 6 Pro Solar in smartwatch mode is up to 14 days indoors and up to 16 days with sufficient solar exposure.

Tactix Delta Solar Edition

The Tactix Dela is Garmin’s tactical fitness smartwatch but is not available in India. The typical audience for the Tactix Delta are military personnel or people in similar professions. It includes features like a built-in ballistics calculator, night vision capabilities, stealth mode, and more. The watch, now also gets Solar charging capabilities.

Garmin Instinct Solar, fēnix 6 Solar Editions Price and Availability

The solar Editions of the Instint, fēnix 6 Series and Tactix are already on sale in the U.S. The Garmin Insinct Solar has a price tag of $399.99 while the Tactical and Surf Editions are priced at $449.99. The fēnix 6S Pro Solar Edition and the fēnix 6 Pro Solar Edition are priced at $849.99. As of now, Garmin India has not made any announcements on when these solar editions of their smartwatches will come to India. This also opens up the question of whether Garmin would bring Solar charging to their Forerunner series of fitness watches.

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Swapnil Mathur

Digit's resident camera nerd, (un)official product photographer and the Reviews Editor

Digit caters to the largest community of tech buyers, users and enthusiasts in India. The all new Digit in continues the legacy of Thinkdigit.com as one of the largest portals in India committed to technology users and buyers. Digit is also one of the most trusted names when it comes to technology reviews and buying advice and is home to the Digit Test Lab, India's most proficient center for testing and reviewing technology products.

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