Garmin Forerunner 255 vs Fitbit Sense 2

Garmin Forerunner 255 was released in June 2022 and has been one of the most sought Forerunner watches of Garmin. Fitbit Sense 2 is a relatively newer variant of Fitbit and was released in September 2022.

We look at a detailed comparison between the Forerunner 255 and Fitbit Sense 2 smartwatches below.

Main differences

The main differences between Garmin Forerunner 255 and Fitbit Sense 2 are given in detail below:

  • Fitbit Sense 2 comes with an AMOLED display. Forerunner 255 uses a MIP or Memory-in-pixel screen. In terms of display configuration, Fitbit Sense 2 has better display clarity and display resolution.
  • Garmin Forerunner 255 supports multi-band GPS or dual-frequency GPS. Fitbit Sense 2 does not have multi-band GPS support.
  • Forerunner 255 has a significantly longer battery backup than the Sense 2 smartwatch.
  • Forerunner 255 has limited support for music. However, you can choose to upgrade the Forerunner 255 standard edition to Forerunner 255 Music edition and gain access to the complete suite of music features. Fitbit Sense 2 lacks the music feature.
  • Fitbit Sense 2 does not support the Galileo GPS network. Forerunner 255 does have full support for the Galileo network. The Galileo network is important as it enhances GPS performance throughout Europe.
  • Sense 2 only supports Bluetooth wireless connectivity. Forerunner 255 can do ANT+, and Bluetooth for wireless connectivity. Forerunner 255 does not have Wi-Fi capability.
  • Forerunner 255 supports incident detection feature. If the watch detects a hard fall, it will notify up to 3 designated emergency contacts. Fitbit Sense 2 does not have incident detection or fall detection features.
  • Fitbit Sense 2 comes with an ECG app. You can take on-demand cardiogram readings using a Fitbit Sense 2. Garmin Forerunner 255 does not have an ECG app or ECG feature yet.
  • Forerunner 255 comes in two sizes 41 mm and 46 mm. Forerunner 255 can also support music in the Forerunner 255 Music edition. Fitbit Sense 2 comes in a single size of 40 mm.
  • Forerunner 255 has 5 tactile buttons. There are 3 tactile buttons on the left side of the watch and another two on the right side of the watch. Fibit Sense 2 has a side key on the left side.
  • Fitbit Sense 2 comes with an in-built speaker and microphone. You can make calls or answer calls directly from the Sense 2 watch. Forerunner 255 does not have a speaker or microphone.
  • Forerunner 255 is costlier than Sense 2 by $50. If you were to choose the Forerunner 255 Music edition, you will be paying $100 over the price of a Fitbit Sense 2.

You can see that there are quite a few differences between the Garmin Forerunner 255 and Fitbit Sense 2 smartwatches.

We look at these features and differences in detail below.

Garmin Forerunner 255 setup screen

Display Specifications

Garmin Forerunner 255 uses a 3rd generation Corning Gorilla Glass. This is one of the most commonly used glasses in a wearable device. Fitbit Sense 2 display lens quality is not known.

However, Fitbit Sense 2 does work on the AMOLED display. With AMOLED display, there are a couple of benefits:

  • The display resolution of Fitbit Sense 2 is higher than the display resolution of Forerunner 255.
  • Fitbit Sense 2 supports Always-on-display or AOD mode

A complete list of display specifications of Garmin Forerunner 255 and Fitbit Sense 2 is shared below.

Display specificationsGarmin Forerunner 255Fitbit Sense 2
Display lensCorning Gorilla Glass 3No information
Display shapeRoundBox or Square
Display size1.3″ or 33 mm1.58″ or 40 mm
Display resolution260 x 260 pixels336 x 336 pixels
Color displayYesYes
Ambient light sensorNoYes

Fitbit Sense 2 has a better display configuration. It has the AMOLED display and an Ambient light sensor to alter the backlight depending on the surroundings.

Physical specifications

You will find Forerunner 255 more solidly built. It is definitely the sturdier of the two watches. Fitbit Sense 2 looks and feels tender in comparison to the Forerunner 255.

We look at the hardware specifications or physical specifications of Forerunner 255 and Fitbit Sense 2 below.

Physical specificationsGarmin Forerunner 255Fitbit Sense 2
iOS compatibleiOS 15 and higher versionsiOS 15 and higher versions
Android compatibleAndroid 7 and higher versionsAndroid 9 and higher versions
Watch size45.6 x 45.6 x 12.9 mm40 x 41 x 11mm
Watch weight49 g46 g
Thickness12.9 mm11 mm
Band size22 mmSmall and Large bands
Band materialSiliconeSilicone
Watch bodyFiber-enforced polymerAluminum
NFC or Contactless PaymentsGarmin PayFitbit Pay and Google Wallet
Water resistance5 ATM or 50 Meters5 ATM or 50 Meters
Device storage4 GB7 days of activity data

The water rating of both watches is identical. But, Garmin Forerunner 255 has a better water resistance capability than the Fitbit Sense 2 in terms of the practical feedback shared by swimmers.

Forerunner 255 has higher device storage than Fitbit Sense 2. But, the in-built speaker and microphone in Fitbit Sense 2 is a valuable for call handling from the watch directly.


Forerunner 255 is one of the best watches for runners all over the world. It offers a very reliable and accurate GPS experience.

Quite literally, there is no match in the GPS performance of Forerunner 255 and Fitbit Sense 2. I won’t even call the Fitbit Sense 2 a distant second when we compare the GPS performance of Forerunner 255 and Fitbit Sense 2.

Garmin Forerunner 255 supports GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo networks. Fitbit Sense 2 does not support the Galileo network and only works on GPS and GLONASS networks.

The Galileo satellite network is owned and operated by the European Space Agency. It is known to improve GPS accuracy and reliability in Europe.

Garmin Forerunner 255 also has a multi-frequency positioning sensor. The multi-frequency positioning sensor helps in providing multi-band GPS or dual-frequency GPS support in Forerunner 255.

With multi-band GPS or dual-frequency GPS, you can get GPS data from multiple satellites at any given point in time. The multi-band GPS capability is very useful when you are in tough terrains with poor GPS connectivity or weak GPS signals.

Because of the support for GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo networks, we feel that Forerunner 255 offers better GPS performance. The multi-band GPS support improves GPS reliability of Forerunner 255. The GPS data of Forerunner 255 is dependable and accurate for any benchmarking or measurement of training metrics.

Fitbit Sense 2 watch

ECG app

Fitbit Sense 2 comes with an ECG app. The app allows you to use the optical heart sensor and take spot ECG or electrocardiogram readings.

ECG readings are very useful in detecting AFib or Atrial Fibrillation cases. ECG readings help in detecting cases of irregular heart rhythm.

You can use the Sense 2 ECG app to take spot readings and share these with a Doctor.

Garmin Forerunner 255 does not have any ECG app or feature.

Fitbit Sense 2’s ECG app is a unique addition to the watch. It is one of the strongest points in favor of Sense 2.


Fitbit Sense 2 does not have any music capability. Music streaming apps are also incompatible with the Fitbit Sense 2 smartwatch.

Garmin Forerunner 255 has limited music functionality. You can use Forerunner 255 to control and play music on the paired smartphone. You can listen to music through a Bluetooth speaker. Or, you could play music directly off the smartphone paired with the smartwatch.

You can also connect to a third-party music provider using ConnectIQ apps. Your connection to the music provider will happen through the paired smartphone. Since Forerunner 255 does not have Wi-Fi connectivity, you cannot connect to the music provider directly from the watch.

However, the music features that are lacking in the standard edition of Forerunner 255 are:

  • You can store audio content on the watch storage.
  • You cannot play music or manage music from the smartwatch

For most people, the ability to play music off the smartphone or from a third-party provider is sufficient.

However, some people may prefer to store music content on the watch storage. For such cases, we suggest upgrading the Forerunner 255 to the Forerunner 255 Music edition by spending an incremental amount of $50.

The Forerunner 255 Music edition will give you the capability to store music content on the watch for offline music listening.

Garmin Forerunner 255 does offer decent music features. Fitbit Sense 2 is a disappointment when it comes to music as it has no ability to play music or store audio content.

Wireless Connectivity

Fitbit Sense 2 can only support Bluetooth connectivity. Sense 2, therefore, can connect to the paired smartphone. All external communication with the outside world will take place through the paired smartphone.

Garmin Forerunner 255 supports ANT+ and Bluetooth connectivity. Besides connecting to the paired smartphone, you can use ANT+ wireless connectivity to connect to ANT+ receivers.

One of the best use cases for ANT+ connectivity is relaying the heart rate data live to an ANT+ capable device.


Most smartwatch features rely on sensors for complete execution. The following sensors are available on Forerunner 255 and Fitbit Sense 2 smartwatches:

SensorsGarmin Forerunner 255Fitbit Sense 2
Barometric altimeterYesYes
Heart rate sensorYes, Garmin Elevate SensorYes
Blood Oxygenation sensorYes, Pulse Ox SensorYes
NFC ReceiverYesYes
cEDA Sensor for Stress trackingNoYes

Fitbit Sense 2 uses a cEDA sensor to track electrical conductance and detect stress levels.

Incident detection or Fall detection

Garmin Forerunner 255 can detect a hard fall and notify the designated emergency contacts. The incident detection feature of Forerunner 255 can be handy in extremely distressful falls.

Garmin allows you to configure designated emergency contacts in the app. If a fall is detected, Garmin notifies your GPS coordinates to the designated emergency contacts using the network connectivity of the paired smartphone.

Fitbit Sense 2 does not have any fall detection or incident detection feature.

The incident detection feature of Forerunner 255 is essential for runners and hikers. For emergency situations, incident detection could make a difference in getting timely help.

Health features

Fitbit Sense 2 has a diverse set of health monitoring features. Some advanced health tracking features are only available for Fitbit Premium subscribers.

Garmin Forerunner 255 also has a good set of sensors for health monitoring.

A side-by-side comparison of the health monitoring features of Garmin Forerunner 255 and Fitbit Sense 2 is shared below.

Health monitoringGarmin Forerunner 255Fitbit Sense 2
Heart rate monitoringYesYes
Resting Heart rateYesYes
Heart rate variability (HRV)YesYes
ECG appNoYes
cEDA Sensor for Stress trackingNoYes
Breathing rate monitoringYesYes
Blood Oxygenation monitoringYesYes
Stress monitoringYesYes
Sleep trackingYesYes
Stress scoreYesYes (in Fitbit Premium)
Health Dashboard/SnapshotYesYes (in Fitbit Premium)
Temperature readingsYesYes
Blood Glucose TrackingNoYes (in Fitbit Premium)
Women HealthYesYes
Body stress scoresBody BatteryDaily Readiness Score (in Fitbit Premium)

Fitbit Sense 2 has added some very useful health-tracking metrics like Blood Glucose Monitoring and Daily Readiness scores. Unfortunately, these features are behind the paywall of Fitbit Premium subscription.

Forerunner 255 does a decent job in health monitoring without the need to take any additional subscription.


Fitbit Sense 2 comes with a promised battery backup of up to 6 days. The battery drains faster when you are in the GPS mode.

With 12 minutes of charging, you can add a day’s worth of battery backup on a Fitbit Sense 2 smartwatch.

Garmin Forerunner 255 has a longer battery backup than Sense 2. Forerunner 255 battery backup in different watch modes is shared below. This will give you an idea about the overall battery backup of a Forerunner 255 smartwatch in comparison with a Fitbit Sense 2 smartwatch.

Watch modeForerunner 255 backup
Smartwatch modeUp to 14 days
GPS-Only GNSS modeUp to 30 hours
All-Systems GNSS mode Up to 25 hours
All-Systems GNSS mode + Multi-BandUp to 16 hours


Garmin Forerunner 255 comes at a list price of $349.99 and Forerunner 255 Music edition costs $399.99. Fitbit Sense 2 comes at a list price of $299.99.

Final verdict

In more ways than one, Forerunner 255 offers exceptional value and features for runners, triathletes, and for people with a penchant for fine smartwatches.

I trust a Forerunner 255 over a Fitbit Sense 2 for the following benefits:

  1. Multi-band GPS
  2. Incident detection feature
  3. Ability to manage music on the paired smartphone
  4. Longer battery life
  5. 3rd generation Corning Gorilla Glass

The only reason I will get a Fitbit Sense 2 instead of the Forerunner 255 is the availability of the ECG app to take on-demand ECG readings through the watch.

Suggested smartwatch comparisons

The following smartwatch comparisons may help you in picking the right watch:

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