The question is, though, is it worth the extra money? Let’s take a look at how the two devices compare.
If you don’t want to read the whole post:
The main difference between the two devices is the addition of cycling and swimming metrics. FR 255 is suitable for triathlon training and it is also equipped with a couple of advanced running metrics previously found in the high-end Forerunner 945 watch.
Now that we know the main difference, let’s compare the two devices in more detail.
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Garmin FR 255 vs FR 245: 10 major differences
As both watches are designed for runners and come from the same brands, there are bound to be many similarities between the two. Here we will discuss only the key differences.
The new Garmin Forerunner 255 and 255s are retailed at a price tag of almost $350. However, if you go for the music addition (FR 255 Music), there are additional charges of $50, which will jump the overall price for both watches to $400.
On the other hand, the Forerunner 245 and 245 music is available for about $300 and $350 respectively. But as they both are old watches, you can easily get them a discounted prices.
The FR 255 is available in two sizes (41mm and 46mm), so this time you can choose the one that fits your wrist perfectly. The FR 245, on the other hand, is available only in one size (42mm).
FR 245 didn’t have an NFC chip for contactless payments, but FR 255 does, just like most of the high-end watches by the company.
Now, you can make payments on the go via Garmin Pay, and don’t have to lug around your wallet while you go out for jogging.
Heart Rate Sensor:
FR 245 was released in April 2019 and was equipped with the latest Elevate V3 sensor at that time.
Three years forwards, the new Elevate V4 sensor has replaced it in the FR 255. The V4 sensor is more accurate and efficient than its predecessor thanks to upgraded algorithms.
With the addition of a barometric altimeter, the FR 255 can now track your ascent/descent data while you run.
This was one of the most requested features by trail runners on a budget watch, and Garmin has finally delivered it with this model.
24/7 Heart Rate Variability Status:
This is a brand new feature that’s exclusive to the FR 255 and FR955, and it’s a great addition for those who want to keep tabs on their fitness and stress levels.
The watch will continuously monitor your heart rate variability (HRV) and give you a status update every morning.
Dual Frequency Support (multi-band GPS):
Given that GPS tracking is one of the most important features in any running watch, it’s great to see that the FR 255 supports multiple satellites network simultaneously.
This feature allows runners to get a more accurate tracking, especially in areas with tall buildings or trees.
Garmin was highly criticized for underpowering the FR 245 by not adding the triathlon or multisport mode.
While it did have most of the key running features, it was missing advanced cycling and swimming metrics. The FR 255 comes neatly and fills the hole making it a true mid-range triathlon watch.
Morning Report For Sleep:
Sleep tracking has been a part of the Forerunner series since Garmin FR 245. However, the morning report has been recently added to the 255/955 watches.
It allows you to keep tabs on your Sleep and recovery. Plus, how it will affect your training. Now you can track Sleep Score trends beyond 7 Days.
Garmin doubled down on the battery life and offers up to 14 days in smartwatch mode on the FR 255. This is a significant improvement over the 7 days life of the FR 245, and it means you can use all the features of the watch without worrying about running out of juice.
Garmin also added a ‘Power Saver Feature’ that can extend the battery performance to a whopping 62 days.
Garmin FR 255 vs FR 245: General Comparison Table:
|Product Name||Garmin Forerunner 255||Garmin Forerunner 245|
|Predecessor||Garmin Forerunner 245, Garmin Forerunner 245 Music||Forerunner 235|
|Models||40mm, 46mm | FR 245, FR 245 Music, FR 245S, FR 245S Music,||Garmin Forerunner 245, 245 Music|
|Release Date||June 2022||June 2021|
|Operating System||Garmin OS||Garmin OS|
|Compatibility||Android, IOS||Android, IOS|
|Competition||Apple Watch 7, FR 955, Garmin Instinct 2, Fenix 7, Ticwatch Pro 3||Apple Watch 7, Fitbit Sense, Ticwatch Pro 3, Fossil Gen 5|
|Suitable For||Outdoor, sport & fitness||Outdoor, sport & fitness|
|Sensors||GPS, GLONASS Galileo, Multi-Frequency Positioning, Garmin Elevate heart rate sensor, Barometric altimeter, Compass, Gyroscope, Accelerometer, Thermometer, Pulse OX blood oxygen saturation monitor||GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, Garmin Elevate heart rate sensor, Compass, Accelerometer, Pulse ox|
|Dimensions, Weight||46mm: 45.6 x 45.6 x 12.9 mm, 49g | 41mm: 41 x 41 x 12.4 mm, 39g||42.3 x 42.3 x 12.2 mm, 38.5 g|
|Band Size||45mm: 22mm | 41mm: 18mm||20mm|
|Colors||Tidal Blue, Slate Gray, Light Pink, Powder Gray, Whitestone, Black||Berry, Slate Gray|
|Waterproofing||5 ATM||5 ATM|
|Display Size||46mm:1.3 inches | 41mm: 1.1 inches||1.2 inches|
|Screen Type & Resolution||sunlight-visible, transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP) | 46mm: 260 x 260 pixels, 41mm:218 x 218 pixels (active area)||sunlight-visible, transflective memory-in-pixel (MIP), 240 x 240 pixels|
|Pixel Per Inch||Not Specified||283 PPI|
|Screen Protection||Corning Gorilla Glass 3||Corning Gorilla Glass 3|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth, ANT+||Bluetooth, ANT+, Wi-Fi|
|Companion App||CONNECT IQ||CONNECT IQ|
|Storage||4G & up to 500 songs||500 songs|
|Timer & Alarm||No||Yes|
|Customizable Watch Faces||Yes||Yes|
|Music Storage, Control||Yes||Yes|
|Make calls, send texts & Emails||Yes(Text response/reject phone call with text (Android only))||No|
|Contactless Payment||Yes (Garmin Pay)||No|
|Built-in GPS||Yes (GPS, GLONASS, Galileo)||Yes (GPS, GLONASS, Galileo)|
|Heart Rate Tracking||Yes||Yes|
|Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis||No||No|
|Sport Mode||32+||Yes (70+)|
|Sync Data With Strava, Apple Health||Yes||Yes|
|Battery Performance||Up to 6.5 hours to 14 days (mixed usage)||6 hours to 7 days (mixed usage)|
|Battery Size||Not Specified||Not specified|
|Charger Type||USB charging cable.||USB Type-A Port|
|Fast Charging||No||No(Takes 2 hours)|
Final Verdict: Is Forerunner 255 worth the upgrade?
The FR 245 was a great watch in its time, but the new FR 255 has taken things to the next level. It’s packed with features that runners will love, and it goes as far as to add a triathlon mode packed in a midrange watch.
Other notable improvements are the addition of a barometric altimeter, availability of two sizes, a new more accurate heart rate sensor, and increased battery life.
Forerunner 255 is going to give a tough time to Polar and Coro’s titles, which have for long been dominating the midrange GPS watch market.