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Garmin Forerunner 610 - Battery Life and Features

By Cliff Jones



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Battery life is excellent at four weeks on watch mode and eight hours in training mode with GPS turned on. For a real-life view, we charged the watch on Friday and went for a 10k, 53-minute run the following Tuesday and had 50 per cent battery life left.

While the battery lasted longer than the 410's, it did take nearly twice as long to charge at almost three hours. However, the watch is easy to power down into sleep mode. If you want to save the battery, you can hold down the Power/Light button on the top-right of the watch, as opposed to the Forerunner 410, which required the user to go through a Menu>Setting>System>Shutdown>Yes process to shut down.

The charger connects magnetically and is more sturdy than Garmin’s previous clasps, which can be knocked loose. The design and metallic back of the watch ensures a secure connection while the watch is being charged.

Additional features include a Virtual Partner, letting you can time yourself against a target pace to keep up with. However, it doesn’t have the Courses functionality of the 410. This allowed you to compete against a previously-completed run. This may be a small omission, but one Garmin felt happy to leave out.

The watch can be set to alert you if you drop below a target pace or speed, and you can set interval training to customise a walk/run or jog/sprint routine. The notification can be set to either beep or vibrate – another welcome addition and a first for a sport watch.

Both Virtual Partner and the custom workouts can be set on the watch itself without the need to connect it to a PC, unlike the Nike SportWatch which needs to be tethered to a computer just to change the time. In fact, the 610 allows users to set the time manually, a simple feature overlooked by the 410.

Among other advanced features is the Where To option, which allows you to pinpoint and save up to 100 locations, from a parked car or a friend’s house, and return them using a bearing and distance. It’s not exactly turn-by-turn navigation, but it’s a function lacking in most sport watches. And one any distance runner who has gotten lost on a run before would welcome.


June 2, 2011, 1:47 pm

Another option for runners on a budget is the Garmin Forerunner 305. It's a bit older and a bit bigger, but it does almost everything the newer watches do and it's under £120 at Amazon including a heart rate strap.


June 2, 2011, 4:41 pm

Good point Tim. The 305 is a bit of a beast to wear, however, and would look out of place as a regular watch. You could argue a running app would do the same for free, but then you'd miss out on the Garmin Connect service. It depends how seduced you are by the latest improvements and style, which of course come at a high price. Do you need it? No. Has that stopped you buying tech in the past? ...

Garmin Forerunner 610

June 13, 2011, 5:46 pm

This could be a good alternative for the runners to have this gps sport. It's really helpful and useful for them to archieve the target. Nice and cool for this gps!


September 6, 2012, 1:35 pm

I just want to compare features of different Garmin watches. is there a site that shows that

Brandon Frye

June 21, 2013, 2:06 pm

I LOVE the 310XT! This watch has served me well over the last couple of months that I've had it. The battery life is phenomenal and plus its waterproof! I can use it for over 2 weeks without charging, and that's running over 30 miles a week. It isn't exactly the prettiest watch, but the orange is kind of cool. Here's a review if that helps: http://www.forkstofeet.com/201...
A friend of mine also recommended the 305 for me but I didn't like the reviews on the satellite loading times. The 210, 410, and 610 look more sleek and casual, but really I kind of like the look of a small computer on my arm, lol. I'm sort of a geek, so that's a plus for me. I have also heard of complaints about the sensitivity of the bezels on these devices. I would recommend that people look at their budgets and needs before purchasing a GPS watch. These watches can get pretty expensive. But, then again, running is probably the cheapest sport around.

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