Garmin Forerunner 265 vs Coros Apex 2 Pro

Garmin Forerunner 265 is a newer variant than the Coros Apex 2 Pro. Forerunner 265 was released in March 2023. Apex 2 Pro has been around since November 2022.

We look at significant differences between the Forerunner 265 and Apex 2 Pro below.

The main differences between Forerunner 265 and Coros Apex 2 Pro are listed below:

  • Garmin Forerunner 265 uses an AMOLED display. Coros Apex 2 Pro has an LCD display.
  • Garmin Forerunner 265 has a much better display resolution than the Coros Apex 2 Pro.
  • Forerunner 265 supports GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo satellite networks. Coros Apex 2 Pro supports GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, QZSS, and BeiDou satellite networks.
  • Coros Apex 2 Pro has a higher device or internal storage of 32 GB. Forerunner 265 has 8 GB of internal storage.
  • Garmin Forerunner 265 supports Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and ANT+ wireless connectivity. Coros Apex 2 Pro can support Wi-Fi and Bluetooth wireless connectivity.
  • Coros Apex 2 Pro has a Sapphire lens in the display. Forerunner 265 uses the 3rd generation Corning Gorilla Glass in the display lens.
  • Garmin Forerunner 265 uses the Garmin Pay app for completing the NFC or contactless payments. Coros Apex 2 Pro does not support NFC payments as of writing this.
  • Using an electrocardiogram sensor, Coros Apex 2 Pro can measure HRV or Heart-rate variability. However, it cannot take ECG readings. Forerunner 265 does not support the Garmin ECG app as of writing this.

It may be pertinent to mention that Forerunner 265 and Coros Apex 2 Pro are priced identically. Both watches also support the multi-band GPS or dual-frequency GPS configuration on the smartwatch.

We look at these differences in more detail below.

Garmin Forerunner 265 boot screen in blue band

An important difference between the Garmin Forerunner 265 and the Coros Apex 2 Pro is the Sapphire display lens in the Apex 2 Pro.

Sapphire is the second hardest naturally available mineral in the world. The Sapphire display glass is virtually scratch-proof. It can take normal wear and tear on the smartwatch more easily.

Sapphire Glass is more premium than the 3rd generation Corning Gorilla Glass. So, the Coros Apex 2 Pro has a better display lens than the Forerunner 265.

However, Forerunner 265 uses an AMOLED display. Due to the AMOLED display, a Forerunner 265 can:

  • offer much better display resolution than a Coros Apex 2 Pro smartwatch.
  • support Always-on-display mode on the smartwatch.

We look at other display specifications of Garmin Forerunner 265 and Apex 2 Pro below.

Display specificationsGarmin Forerunner 265Coros Apex 2 Pro
Display typeAMOLEDLCD
Display resolution416 x 416 pixels260 x 260 pixels
Display size1.3″ or 33 mm1.3″ or 33 mm
Color displayYesYes
Display glassCorning Gorilla Glass 3Sapphire Glass
TouchscreenYesYes

The AMOLED display of Forerunner 265 presents a brighter display experience. However, the Sapphire lens in Coros Apex 2 Pro handles abuse more easily than Forerunner 265’s 3rd generation Corning Gorilla Glass.

Coros Apex 2 Pro has a watch body and bezel made of titanium. Forerunner 265 is 100% made of fiber-enforced polymer.

Apex 2 Pro also offers a higher internal storage than Forerunner 265.

We look at some important physical specifications of Forerunner 265 and Coros Apex 2 Pro below.

Physical specificationsGarmin Forerunner 265Coros Apex 2
Physical size46.1 x 46.1 x 12.9 mm46.1 x 46.5 x 14 mm
Thickness12.9 mm14 mm
Weight47 g66 g (Silicone)/53 g (Nylon)
Band size22 mm22 mm
Band materialSiliconeSilicone and Nylon
Water rating5 ATM or 50 meters5 ATM or 50 meters
Wireless connectivityANT+, Bluetooth, Wi-FiBluetooth, Wi-Fi
Bezel materialFiber-enforced polymerTitanium
Watch bodyFiber-enforced polymerTitanium alloy
Device storage8 GB32 GB
Android compatibleYesYes
iOS compatibleYesYes

Garmin Forerunner 265 and Coros Apex 2 Pro are compatible with the Android and iOS operating systems. Forerunner 265 uses the Garmin Connect app to interface with the paired smartphone. Coros Apex 2 Pro uses the Coros App to interact with the paired smartphone.

Coros Apex 2 Pro looks sturdier with a titanium finish and body. It also offers a very decent storage space of 32 GB to store personalized audio content or additional topo maps. Garmin Forerunner 265 does allow you to connect the watch to an ANT+ received for detailed study of training and health metrics.

Forerunner 265 and Coros Apex 2 Pro support multi-band GPS or dual-frequency GPS.

Dual-frequency GPS allows you to fetch GPS data from multiple satellites at any given point in time. This is especially useful when GPS connectivity or GPS signal quality is poor. With additional satellites, the accuracy and reliability of the GPS data improves.

However, the essential difference lies in the GPS satellite systems supported by a Forerunner 265 and Coros Apex 2 Pro.

Garmin Forerunner 265 is quick to get GPS signals. It supports GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo satellite networks.

Coros Apex 2 Pro supports GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, QZSS, and BeiDou satellite networks.

QZSS is a Japanese satellite network and BeiDou is managed by the Chinese. So, the Coros Apex 2 Pro has universal support for the five main GPS systems across the world.

Coros Apex 2 Pro in Green nylon band

NFC payments or contactless payments through the smartwatch require an NFC sensor in the smartwatch.

Garmin Forerunner 265 fully supports NFC connectivity and contactless payments through the Garmin Pay app. You can add your wallet account in the Garmin Pay app to pay for merchant purchases through the smartwatch directly.

Coros Apex 2 Pro is not compatible with NFC payments. You cannot make contactless payments using a Coros Apex 2 Pro smartwatch.

Coros Apex 2 Pro offers an extended battery life in comparison with the Garmin Forerunner 265. On different watch modes, we have compared the battery backup provided by Garmin Forerunner 265 and Coros Apex 2 Pro below.

Watch modeForerunner 265 battery backupCoros Apex 2 Pro battery backup
Smartwatch modeUp to 13 daysUp to 30 days
GPS ModeUp to 20 hoursUp to 75 hours
GPS Mode with musicUp to 7 hoursUp to 17 hours
All-Systems GNSS mode + Multi-Band: Up to 14 hoursUp to 14 hoursUp to 26 hours
All-Systems GNSS mode + Multi-Band and music: Up to 6 hoursUp to 11 hours

The battery backup offered by a Coros Apex 2 Pro is almost twice the battery backup of a Garmin Forerunner 265.

At the same time, we feel that the battery backup is an inconsequential comparison. You can top-up an empty battery to full charge levels in less than 2 hours of charging the Forerunner 265.

Higher battery backup, however, may be very opportune for runners, hikers, and triathletes.

Garmin Forerunner 265 is not compatible with the Garmin ECG app. The Garmin ECG app received FDA approval in January 2023. However, it has not been rolled out to the Forerunner 265 series smartwatches.

Coros Apex 2 Pro has an electrocardiogram sensor. But, Apex 2 Pro cannot take ECG readings. It can use the electrocardiogram sensor to take HRV readings or study the Heart rate variability of the watch owner.

Essentially, Coros Apex 2 Pro and Garmin Forerunner 265 cannot detect irregular heart rhythms or conditions of Atrial Fibrillation.

Incident detection or fall detection is available in a Forerunner 265. Upon detecting a hard fall, the Forerunner 265 will notify the designated emergency contacts. The notification contains smartwatch geo-location coordinates. It also contains a message indicating that the watch wearer has had a fall.

The Incident detection feature in Garmin Forerunner 265 is a very useful and practical solution for dire situations requiring external assistance.

Coros Apex 2 Pro does not have any fall detection or incident detection feature.

Coros Apex 2 Pro and Garmin Forerunner 265 are priced at $449.99.

Coros Apex 2 Pro does offer some significant features and product upgrades over the Garmin Forerunner 265.

  1. Coros Apex 2 Pro has support for QZSS and BeiDou satellite systems in addition to GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo.
  2. Apex 2 Pro uses a more premium Sapphire display lens.
  3. Apex 2 Pro has a higher internal storage of 32 GB.
  4. Apex 2 Pro has a watch body and a .bezel made of titanium.

All these factors make me lean towards the Coros Apex 2 Pro smartwatch over the Garmin Forerunner 265.

At the same time, I will pick a Garmin Forerunner 265 over the Coros Apex 2 Pro for the following reasons:

  • AMOLED display in the Forerunner 265.
  • Higher display resolution and screen brightness of Forerunner 265.
  • Support for incident detection or fall detection in Garmin Forerunner 265.
  • Forerunner 265 is quicker in getting GPS signals and data.

You may like to read more smartwatch comparisons below:

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