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Garmin Adds Solar Charging to Its Tactical Smartwatches

Garmin today announced upgraded versions of its Instinct and tactix tactical GPS smartwatches with solar charging capability — the Instinct Solar Tactical Edition, tactix Delta Solar Edition, and tactix Delta Solar Edition with Ballistics.

Garmin says that the integrated solar charging technology significantly increases the effective battery life of the watches; they also added additional features, such as more fitness monitoring functionality, battery-usage customization, and a built-in ballistic solver.

Tactical Smartwatches

What makes Garmin's Instinct and tactix watches tactical? In addition to what you'd typically expect from a smartwatch, they also boast features designed for tactical operations. They're compatible with night vision and have a Jumpmaster mode for airborne operations, including HAHO, HALO, and static jumps.

While in dual-positioning mode, you can view GPS coordinates in two different formats, such as latitude/longitude and MGRS, at the same time. You can also activate stealth mode, so that GPS positions can't be shared or stored and wireless communications with the watch. are disabled.

For particularly sensitive operations or unnecessarily nosy spouses, the tactix Delta Solar watches even have a “kill switch” so that you can immediately wipe the watch clean, returning it to its blank, factory default settings.

The watches are all also very rugged and built to MIL-STD-810 standards.

Instinct Solar – Tactical Edition smartwatch

With its power-sipping monochrome display, the Instinct Solar Tactical Edition can last up to 24 days in smartwatch mode on batteries alone or up to 54 days with enough exposure to sunlight. In GPS mode, the Instinct can last up to 30 hours on batteries or 38 hours with enough sunlight. You can customize your power-usage profiles as desired.

Garmin Instinct Tactical Solar Edition smartwatch

Garmin also added a pulse oximeter to read your oxygen saturation level. Moreover, by assessing your heart rate history, activities, sleep, and stress, the new Instinct calculates a “Body Battery” metric to give you a sense of your energy reserves.

MSRP will be $450.


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tactix Delta – Solar Editions

The tactix Delta is Garmin's premier tactical watch, a fenix 6 that went through Selection. And now, the tactix Delta Solar Edition has a solar charging lens. In smartwatch mode, it can last up to 21 days indoors, stretching out to 24 days with enough sunlight.

Garmin tactix Delta Solar smartwatch

It has a 1.4-inch, always-on color display like the fenix 6X, with a rugged sapphire lens, DLC-coated steel bezel, and PVD-coated steel rear cover. Bucking the silicone strap smartwatch trend, Garmin fitted the watch with a reinforced, tactical nylon band.

And even though it's ready to go to war, the tactix Delta Solar still has all the hipster-yet-convenient smartwatch features that you'd find in the fenix 6 series, from health and fitness to mapping and music.

Garmin tactix Delta Solar smartwatch

For shooters, the new tactix Delta – Solar Edition with Ballistics adds Applied Ballistics Elite software to calculate firing solutions. It can also connect with certain SIG SAUER BDX and Terrapin X laser rangefinders.

MSRP will be $1,100 for the solar model and $1,400 with Applied Ballistics.


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