Over the last decade, Garmin has established itself as a premium manufacturer of fitness smartwatches for dedicated athletes and sports people. Now, with the release of the Garmin Venu Sq GPS, they are branching out into the general fitness market. In this Garmin Venu smartwatch review, we take a close look at their most affordable smartwatch yet.
- Venu Sq Smartband Watch Aesthetics
- Fitness Accessories
- What I Really Like About the Garmin Venu Sq
- Wrap Up
Venu Sq Smartband Watch Aesthetics
The Venu Sq features a simple, rectangular face that looks very much like an Apple Watch. Unlike the Apple Watch, however, it doesn’t have a rotating crown on the side. The body of the watch is made of plastic with brushed aluminum surrounding the curved glass display. The display is 1.3 inches diagonally and features a 240 x 240 resolution. It also provides you with ambient light adjustment so you can clearly see the screen when you’re out in the sunlight.
There is quite a thick bezel around the screen of the watch. However, with the background generally being black, the bezel is not that noticeable. The Amoled screen of the Sq provides you with vibrant colors. There are two control buttons on the right side of the watch. Overall, the interface is attractive, functional, and simple.
The Sq interface runs through a loop as you swipe down the screen. These include My Day, Health Stats, Measurements, History, Heart Rate, Body Battery, and Weather. Notifications also pop up on the screen. By tapping and holding the top button on the right of the screen, you get a quick menu that features the half dozen apps you use most often.
The back of the watch features heart rate sensors and a charging unit. To charge this watch, you need to click it into the charger, as opposed to wireless charging. However, the battery life of five to six days means you won’t have to carry your charger with you if you’re going away for a weekend.
The plastic strap design is simple yet comfortable. You can also easily replace the strap to suit your own style.
The Garmin Venu Sq features all the AI fitness technology you need to fully monitor your training sessions. You get GPS and heart rate data to allow you to accurately track your workout. GPS tracking is extremely accurate. You can connect to the Garmin Connect app to get a full breakdown of your workout diagnostics, complete with charts and tables. The heart rate tracking is also impressively accurate on this device.
The Garmin Connect app provides you with a wealth of information to monitor your workouts. It is all presented clearly so that you don’t get overwhelmed with information. You can also make adjustments to your watch such as adding widgets or changing the watch face on the Garmin IQ app.
In terms of connectivity, the Sq provides you with wifi, so you can download music from Spotify. Bluetooth also allows you to connect to your phone, headphones, or earbuds. That means you can listen to your favorite sounds off the watch while running without having to take your phone with you.
What I Really Like About the Garmin Venu Sq
A cool feature of the Sq is that it allows for offline Spotify. That gives you the freedom of running and listening to music without having to download mp3 files or lugging your phone with you. This is a unique feature that other sports watch brands, such as Apple and Fitbit, are unable to provide.
The clean, simple yet functional look of the Garmin Venu Sq is another plus for me. It is comfortable, lightweight, and indiscreet. It is also not a complicated watch. In fact, it does just what most everyday fitness buffs want a watch to do—accurately track workouts, allow them to listen to music, and be easy to use.
The final thing I really like about the Garmin Venu Sq is the price. With a recommended retail price of $199, it is around half the price of competing models from Apple and FitBit. You also get a longer battery life than either of those competitors. For a comparison of the two closest offerings from those providers, check out our Apple Watch 4 vs Fitbit Versa head-to-head match up.
There is no microphone or speaker on the Garmin Venu Sq. As a result, you are not able to use a voice assistant or take phone calls on it. You do, however, get message notifications. As mentioned already, you can download from Spotify on this smartwatch, but those downloads take a long time. It will take more than an hour to download about a hundred songs, so you need to plan for that ahead of time.
The interface of this smartwatch, though quite easily navigable, is a bit nonsensical in terms of where things are located. As an example, the workouts and the apps are located in the same place. There is also no wireless charging feature on the Garmin Venu Sq. That problem is partially negated by the long battery life of around six days. However, if you are a person who travels frequently, you may not be happy about having to always carry your charger with you.
A final nitpicky complaint is that you need to have two apps on your phone with this smartwatch: the Garmin Connect and the Garmin IQ app. Even though each of these apps is excellent and easy to use, it would be better if they were integrated into a single app.
The Garmin Venu Sq GPS Fitness Smartwatch is a simple, functional, and affordable smartwatch for the average fitness enthusiast. If you are a person who doesn’t want all the bells and whistles, preferring a clean, reliable, and extremely accurate way to track your training while also enjoying your favorite songs— coupled with a very detailed app to allow for a deep dive into your workout diagnostics—then the Garmin Venu Sq is well worth considering.