The new Garmin Fenix watch was announced this week and is a GPS wristwatch intended for hikers and climbers who want built-in navigation to help them be get to their destination and back again safely. In addition to the GPS receiver there is also an altimeter, barometer and compass function integrated into the watch making this a must-have gadget for climbers and alpinists the world over.
The Garmin Fenix GPS watch lets you create routes that can be navigated off the trail and off-road and the routes are shown on the watch face in an easy to undetand format. It is possible to mark up to 1,000 different waypoints and also save up to 10,000 track points using the Garmin BaseCamp software in tandem with the new outdoor watch product.
There is also a “Take Me Home” called Tracback which lets you re-trace your steps which can help in dangerous climbing situations and data can be synchronized to the web via Bluetooth to a PC or even smart phones and tablets. The Garmin Fenix watch is waterproof up to 50 meters so can also be used by people who will be in adverse weather conditions.
The Garmin Fenix has an LCD watch face which is designed at 70 x 70 pixels. As well as GPS navigation and compass functions there is a timer, stopwatch, and it will even predict the weather should you need to know about any impending storms heading your way.
For hikers in the mountains this is of particular interest, because the Garmin Fenix barometer can be used to observe sudden weather changes. There is also an altimeter and a 3-axis electronic compass, which should also work on the move. An external and optional wireless thermometer measures the ambient temperature and sends the data to the watch so adventurers and explorers can be fully aware of their conditions at all times – and plan their treks more efficiently and safely.
With built-in wireless ANT+ technology, you can even use a heart rate monitor or cycling sensors for speed – although the user must purchase these additional extras separately.
The Fenix Garmin costs about $400 US Dollars and comes with a long-life ION battery which will run in GPS mode for up to 50 hours. If the GPS is turned off then the battery life will increase to three weeks.
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