Garmin’s new square smartwatch obliterates the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 with its battery life

A few weeks later Samsung’s latest Wear OS-powered devices and just Days before Apple’s largest smartwatch family to date, the affordable Garmin Venu Sq 2 and Venu Sq 2 – Music Edition went official…and up for grabs in the US.

Priced at $249.99 and $299.99 respectively, the two all-new but decidedly familiar smartwatches offering both Android and iOS compatibility are clearly meant to rival the cheaper ones. Variants of the Galaxy Watch 5 and the next Apple Watch SE 2.

How does Garmin do it?

Believe it or not, the Venu Sq 2 promises to keep the lights on for up to 11 days (!!!) on a single charge despite tipping the scales at just 38 grams. To put those numbers into perspective, a non-Pro 40mm The Galaxy Watch 5 weighs an admittedly more impressive 29 grams… while barely committing to getting you “through a busy day” before you need to refuel.
Then there is the first generation Apple Watch SE, which also starts at around 30 grams and can also only offer “all-day” battery life (singular), and perhaps most insane of all, Garmin’s own OG Venu Sq, capable of operating for up to 6 days between charges with more or less the same dimensions and weight as this second generation model.

Make that models (plural), because the Garmin Venu Sq 2 offers quite a few interesting color combinations at the aforementioned reasonable prices, ranging from classic slate and gray or slate and black to decidedly fashionable cream gold / flavors of White, Gold Cream/French Gray and Gold Peach/Ivory and a downright awesome version of Metallic Mint/Cool Mint.

It’s certainly nice to see Garmin adding a dash of style and a splash of color to a mundane-looking smartwatch settling for “cheap” (read light and durable) silicone bands across the board and a love- it-or-hate it square-shaped “fiber-reinforced polymer case” with an extra-strong (and again lightweight) anodized aluminum bezel.

More than just a battery life champion

This bad boy certainly isn’t going to win any (traditional) beauty contests, but of course the beauty often comes from within… or from an almost startlingly sharp AMOLED touchscreen (for $250+) with a resolution of 320 x 360 pixels and a generous diagonal of 1.41 inches.

Naturally, the only noticeable difference between the “standard” and Music editions of the Venu Sq 2 is the ability to store songs on the latter’s device for phone-free listening. Everything else is exactly the same on both devices, from phone-free GPS functionality to 24/7 heart rate monitoring, in-depth sleep tracking, energy monitoring body battery, stress tracker, female health tracker and blood oxygen saturation tracker.

Simply put, the Garmin Venu Sq 2 can track a lot for a lot of time, so if you don’t mind its design and its somewhat poorer app selection compared to Apple or Samsung Watches, it’s definitely going to be hard to save your unspent $250 from today.

By the way, the downsides of the apps clearly don’t apply to general fitness enthusiasts, casual runners, swimmers, cyclists, golfers or tennis players, all of whom can rely on a small dedicated program monitoring their every move right from the initial smartwatch setup process.

Oh, and the Venu Sq 2 is (of course) also swim proof. And it also comes with native support for contactless payments on the wrist. And “smart notifications”. And a bunch of preloaded workouts. And over 1,600 different exercises so you can create your own personalized workout. And a nifty little feature called Health Snapshot that pulls together all the most important metrics and stats to provide insight into your well-being. Alright, we’ll stop now and let you think about how you could do better than all that at just $250.