The Instinct 2X Solar ($450) is the newest addition to the Instinct family of Garmin smartwatches, and it has a feature that is so simple yet so genius. Yeah, yeah, yeah, it’ll stay charged forever so long as you get 3 hours of sunlight on its face — who cares? It has a flashlight.
Picture this: You’re a hunter. You hop out of your truck after driving for 2 hours, and it’s still 2 hours to daylight. Your headlamp is sitting in the snow in your driveway, where it landed after it fell out of your pack. You now either have to carefully trek across unstable terrain in the pitch blackness of night or drain your phone using the flashlight to illuminate your way.
I don’t have to picture it because I lived it. My cracked phone screen and now weak ankle are remnants of that mistake.
The Instinct 2X Solar smartwatch would have likely saved my bacon. Such a simple innovation: light.
Garmin Instinct 2X Solar Smartwatch
- Unlimited battery life, pending use and sun
- It has a flashlight!
- Extensive biometric tracking
- GPS, livetrack, and incident detection
- It is big. Little wrists need not apply.
This is just a first look at this new offering from Garmin, so we won’t dive too deep. We will be putting this watch through some serious testing, so stay tuned.
If we seem oddly excited about something as simple as a flashlight, just trust us when we say it’s a killer design feature that somehow doesn’t really exist in most modern smartwatches.
Outside of shedding light along your path, you can expect all of the bells and whistles. Wellness, fitness, and lifestyle tracking options will be plentiful. This watch is built rugged with a 50mm polymer case, topped with a power glass lens, which produces 50% more energy than the previous Instinct solar watch.
Instinct 2X Solar Battery Life
The battery life breakdown is pretty intense. We could try to explain it all or — we can just show you the specs:
- Smartwatch: 40 days; unlimited with solar*
- GPS: 60 hours; 145 hours with solar**
- All Satellite Systems: 40 hours; 65 hours with solar*
- All Satellite Systems + Multi-Band: 27 hours; 36 hours with solar**
- Max Battery GPS Mode: 150 hours; unlimited with solar**
- Expedition GPS Activity: 60 days; unlimited with solar*
- Battery Saver Watch Mode: 100 days; unlimited with solar*
*Solar charging, assuming all-day wear with 3 hours per day outside in 50,000-lux conditions
**Solar charging, assuming use in 50,000-lux conditions
The gist of all those numbers is this — it has a battery that will keep running long after your feet are sick of moving. So, long as you can get 3 hours of sun on your wrist, you can count on the watch to keep on ticking.
Instinct 2x Solar New Features of Note
Did we mention that this thing has a flashlight? It also is the first in the line to offer Obstacle Course Racing. It also comes in two different editions.
The Tactical Edition ($500) is built to U.S. military standards and offers features specific to a tactical environment, such as Jumpmaster and the ability to turn on Stealth Mode, which prevents the sharing of your GPS location.
We’re excited to get this watch into the field and tested. Check back to see if it lives up to our expectations and if we make it to our tree stand without breaking a leg.