Garmin Forerunner 265 vs Venu 2 Plus

Garmin Forerunner 265 and Venu 2 Plus are two watches that come at the same price. Forerunner 265 is designed for runners. Venu 2 Plus is suitable for everyone.

We evaluate both watches and share the main features and capabilities.

Main differences between Forerunner 265 and Venu 2 Plus

  • Forerunner 265 has a multi-band GPS while the Venu 2 Plus does not have this feature.
  • Venu 2 Plus has an in-built speaker and microphone.
  • Forerunner 265 has a spectator messaging safety feature.
  • Venu 2 Plus has a bezel made of stainless steel.

The major differentiator is the multi-mode GPS capability of the Forerunner 265 series smartwatch. We look at the main features of both watches below.

Forerunner 265 heart rate

Display

Both watches have an AMOLED display and share the most common display features. The table below represents the display features of Forerunner 265 and Venu 2 Plus.

Display specificationsForerunner 265Venu 2 Plus
Display lensCorning Gorilla Glass 3Corning Gorilla Glass 3
Display typeAMOLEDAMOLED
Display size1.3″1.3″
Display resolution416 x 416 pixels416 x 416 pixels
Always on displayYesYes
Color displayYesYes
TouchscreenYesYes

Forerunner 265 and Venu 2 Plus have comparable display features.

Physical specifications

The main hardware specifications of the Forerunner 265 and Venu 2 Plus are shared below.

SpecificationsForerunner 265Venu 2 Plus
Watch size46.1 x 46.1 x 12.9 mm43.6 x 43.6 x 12.6 mm
Thickness12.9 mm12.6 mm
Watch weight47 g51 g
Watch bodyFiber-enforced polymerFiber-enforced polymer with rear metal cover
Watch BezelFiber-enforced polymerStainless steel
Water rating5 ATM5 ATM
Device storage8 GB8 GB
Band size22 mm22 mm
Band materialSiliconeSilicone

You will find that the Forerunner 265 is slightly broader and thicker than the Venu 2 Plus smartwatch.

GPS

Forerunner 265 has much better GPS performance than the Venu 2 Plus smartwatch.

Forerunner 265 comes with a multi-frequency positioning sensor. This sensor provides multi-band GPS capability on Forerunner 265. With multi-band GPS, you can get GPS data from multiple satellites at the same time.

Multi-band GPS improves the accuracy of GPS data.

Forerunner 265 also has SatIQ technology. SatIQ toggles between multi-mode and simple GPS modes on the watch. This helps in conserving the battery of the watch.

For the multi-band capability of Forerunner 265, we believe that Forerunner 265 is way ahead of the Venu 2 Plus for its GPS experience and accuracy.

For runners, Forerunner 265 is the suggested variant.

Garmin Venu 2 Plus

Battery

The battery life of Forerunner 265 and Venu 2 Plus is almost equivalent on the various GPS modes. We list the battery backup provided by Forerunner 265 and Venu 2 Plus in different watch modes below.

Watch modeForerunner 965Venu 2 Plus
Smartwatch mode up to 13 days up to 9 days
GPS mode without musicup to 20 hoursup to 24 hours
GPS mode with musicup to 7 hoursup to 8 hours
All Systems + Multi-Band Mode without Music Battery Lifeup to 14 hoursNA
SatIQ (AutoSelect) Mode without Music Battery Lifeup to 16 hoursNA
SatIQ (AutoSelect) Mode with Music Battery Lifeup to 6.5 hoursNA
All Systems + Multi-Band Mode with Music Battery Lifeup to 6 hoursNA

There is hardly any difference in the battery backup provided by Forerunner 265 and Venu 2 Plus watches. Therefore, battery backup is not a differentiating factor between the two watches.

Activity profiles

Forerunner 265 has additional activity profiles in cycling, running, and swimming. Venu 2 Plus has additional profiles in outdoor recreation.

We look at some of these differences below.

  • Cycling profiles – Forerunner 265 has additional profiles for Mountain Biking, eBiking, eMountain Biking.
  • Swimming – Forerunner 265 has an additional profile for open water swimming.
  • Running – Forerunner 265 has additional profiles for Outdoor Track Running, Trail Running, Virtual Running, and Ultra Running.
  • Outdoor recreation – Venu 2 has additional profiles for Indoor Climbing, Bouldering, XC Classic Skiing, and Disc Golf

Cost

Forerunner 265 has been launched at a price of $449.99. Venu 2 Plus is also available at a list price of $449.99.

Final verdict

Since there is no cost difference between the Forerunner 265 and Venu 2 Plus smartwatches, the choice would depend upon your end goals.

For runners, the multi-band GPS of Forerunner 265 is a deal changer. On a similar note, additional features on the Golf and the stainless steel bezel of Venu 2 Plus make it a more presentable watch.

From a functionality perspective, Forerunner 265 ticks all the boxes for runners. From an all-around perspective, Garmin Venu 2 Plus is a good option.

Since I prefer the latest smartwatches for my purchase decisions, my money would go to the Garmin Forerunner 265 as it is the latest variant in the Forerunner series of watches.

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