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  • New Developer FAQ

    Welcome to the Connect IQ forums!

    Below are some of the most common questions and answers we see on the forums. We'll add to the FAQ over time, so check back now and then for updates!

    app - Generic term for all Connect IQ four application types: watch face, watch app, widget, and data field. The "watch-app" type is commonly just referred to as an "application" and may run on non-watch-like devices like the Edge or Oregon series devices.
    APAC - Asia-Pacific, which includes China, Taiwan, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore
    API - Application Programming Interface; the specific software routines supported by the SDK used to write Connect IQ apps
    CIQ - Connect IQ
    GCM - Garmin Connect Mobile
    GE - Garmin Express
    SDK - Software Development Kit; the tool set which developers use to create Connect IQ apps
    VM - Virtual Machine; the software on Garmin devices that runs Connect IQ apps

    1. Where can I download the SDK?

    You can find noth Mac and Windows version of the SDK at

    2. How do I get started with Connect IQ?

    The Programmer's Guide and User Experience Guide are good references to start gaining familiarity with Monkey C and Connect IQ. These are also included with the SDK as PDFs for offline reference. The SDK also includes a set of sample apps that demonstrate the capabilities of Connect IQ.

    If you have questions along the way, these forums are the best place to go for assistance. Many questions have already been answered in previously posted threads, however both the Connect IQ team and several experienced developers monitor the forums to answer new questions or respond to issues you may encounter.

    3. Am I allowed to charge for my app though the Connect IQ app store?

    Yes, you are! It is acceptable to list prices, link to payment sites, or ask for donations on the Connect IQ app store as long as solicitations are related to your app. The app store falls under the the Connect IQ SDK License Agreement, which does not forbid solicitation for sales of apps by app developers. However, solicitation for business on other Garmin web sites, including this forum, is prohibited but Garmin's Terms of Use.

    4. Can I display seconds on my watch face?

    Yes, you can! However, a priority of Connect IQ is the preservation of battery life, so we have a system in place that governs how often watch faces may be updated. Watch faces update at once a minute in low power mode, and once a second when in full power mode. The watch will enter full power mode for a few seconds when the user gestures to look at it, and then return to low power mode. Developers will often detect this transition to full power mode, display a seconds indicator for a few moments, and then hide the seconds indicator once the device returns to low power mode. You can find out more about the low power and full power mode transition in the User Experience Guide, or read about the specifics of detecting these transitions in the API Docs.

    5. How do I format output padded with leading zeros?

    Many Connect IQ apps include time values that require leading zeros. For example, time written in an HH:MM:SS format appears as 12:05:05 rather than 12:5:5. Monkey C includes string formatting functions that can get this job done using a "%02d" format specifier.

    A common error is to specify a format of "%.2d" or "%0.2d". This may pad a decimal with leading zeros in some languages, such as in C++'s printf() function, but Monkey C follows the C99 standard. C99 requires the '0' flag to specify padding with leading zeros for d, i, o, u, x, X, a, A, e, f, F, g, and G conversions. In addition, if a precision is specified with '.', according to C99 the the '0' flag is ignored.

    6. How can I load the apps I develop to my device for testing purposes?

    Apps are typically installed to devices via the Connect IQ App Store, but it's often useful to side-load an app to a device for testing without having to first upload a version to the app store. Here's how:
    1. In Eclipse, choose Connect IQ > Build for Device Wizard…
    2. In the Build for Device Tool window:
      • Choose the project you wish to build
      • Choose the target device
      • Set an output location
      • Click Finish
    3. Connect your device to the computer via USB (it should connect as mass storage and appear as a drive)
    4. Copy the resultant PRG file from the output location to /GARMIN/APPS on your device
    5. Disconnect your device; the app should be available for use

    7. I have side-loaded an app as described above, but app settings won't work. Why is this?

    App settings allow user to configure an app via Garmin Express or Garmin Connect Mobile, and rely on the Connect IQ App Store to function properly. When an app is side loaded, this connection to the Connect IQ App Store is never established. If you have an app that uses app settings that needs to be tested, you may submit the app to the Connect IQ App Store and test out the settings features while the app is still pending approval.

    8. How can I test or debug Connect IQ apps I am developing?

    The best way to currently test Connect IQ apps is to include System.println() statements at strategic points in your app. Within Eclipse, these println() statements will output to the console. On a device, println() statements write to an <APPNAME>.TXT file in /GARMIN/APPS/LOGS. These log files are not automatically created, so must be manually created on the device and named to match the name of the app's corresponding PRG file. For example, to log output from /GARMIN/APPS/MYAPP.PRG, you must create /GARMIN/APPS/LOGS/MYAPP.TXT.

    Aside from this basic debugging technique, there are two general types of on-device crash that can occur related to Connect IQ, which each generate log files: app crashes and device crashes. App crashes typically result in an app quitting unexpectedly or displaying an 'IQ!' icon, but does not cause the entire device to crash or reboot. This kind of crash is most commonly due to a bug in an app, though it can also be due to a bug in Connect IQ itself. Whenever an app crash occurs, a CIQ_LOG.txt file is written to /GARMIN/APPS/LOGS on the device, and contains information related to the crash that app developers may use to address the problem. Device crashes typically cause the device to reboot or freeze. These indicate a Connect IQ or device firmware bug, and should be much less common than app crashes. When a device crash occurs, an ERR_LOG.txt file is written to /GARMIN on the device, containing stack trace information related to the crash. Garmin's device teams can take a look at the device crash logs to determine the cause of the crash and will typically provide a fix in a future firmware release.

    When any log file exceeds 5kb, it will automatically be archived to <LOGNAME>.BAK, and a new log will be started. Any old .BAK files will be overwritten when the archive occurs, so the max space a log can reach is ~10kb.
    Last edited by Brandon.ConnectIQ; 10-20-2017, 10:38 AM.

  • #2
    9. I just downloaded the latest SDK. Can I build apps that will work on any device that supports Connect IQ?

    Yes! We have designed the SDK so that you can target any Connect IQ-compatible devices, whether they support version 1.2.x, 1.3.x, or 2.1.x.

    Anything built for 1.2.x devices will work on 1.3.x and 2.1.x devices, so it's the most inclusive approach as long as you don't need the newest features for your app. Building for 2.1.x will limit the devices you can target, but will give you access to all of the latest goodies.

    In the 2.1.2 SDK release, we added an option to the App Export Wizard that allows you to select a target Connect IQ version, which limits the selectable target devices to only those that support the Connect IQ version you've chosen. The only decision for you to make is which devices you would like to support. Here's a handy-dandy table to help with that choice:
    1.2.x Devices (Aikido) 1.4.x Devices (Aikido) 2.1.x Devices (Biker)
    epix D2 Bravo Approach S60
    D2 Bravo Titanium D2 Charlie
    Forerunner 230 Edge 520
    Forerunner 235 Edge 820
    Forerunner 630 Edge Explore 820
    Forerunner 920XT Edge 1000
    fenix 3 Edge Explore 1000
    fenix 3 HR Forerunner 735XT
    quatix 3 Forerunner 935
    tactix Bravo fenix 5
    vivoactive fenix 5S
    fenix 5X
    fenix Chronos
    Oregon 7xx Series
    quatix 5
    Rino 7xx Series
    vivoactive HR
    10. My app uses app settings, and it sometimes crashes after changing the settings, but the rest of the time it works fine. What can cause this?

    With GCM for Android there is an issue where it sets a value as a Float when a Number is expected. It's good practice to check the value to ensure it's the expected type. For example, this code will check for a null value and convert the value to a Number as long as it is not null. Otherwise, a default value is returned:

    function readKeyInt(myApp,key,thisDefault) {
        var value = myApp.getProperty(key);
        if(value == null || !(value instanceof Number)) {
            if(value != null) {
                value = value.toNumber();
            } else {
                value = thisDefault;
        return value;
    11. I think that I've found a bug with CIQ. Where do I report it?

    If you think you've found a bug in the platform we have a Connect IQ Bug Reports Sub-Forum here. Please make sure to read the rules sticky thread and follow the directions there. If you post about a bug in the regular forums your thread may be moved or deleted.

    12. I keep getting a "Too Many Arguments Error", but I never used to get this. What is going on?

    We added a functionality in the 2.1.2 SDK release to perform an argument count check on function and method calls. This was included as part of a larger security effort, which includes things like app signing and encryption of app data. Overall, this is a good thing, since it promotes more robust source code prevents some potential security exploits. Unfortunately, it has also caused some apps to crash on 1.3.x and 2.1.x devices when built with the 2.1.2 SDK even though these same apps execute without issue when built with earlier SDK releases. This kind of crash appears in the CIQ_LOG.txt file as a "Too many arguments" error, signifying the argument count check has failed.

    In most cases, the culprits behind this "Too many arguments" issue are missing 'state' arguments for onStart() and onStop(). These are currently unused argument and were passed implicitly in earlier versions of Connect IQ, but must now be included explicitly. Another example that can cause this is something like an initialize() function for a Drawable, which takes an array of options but to which none are passed.

    The new minimum SDK selector is designed to build for the highest supported SDK for each device. For example, consider this set of devices: device A (2.1.x), B (1.3.x), and C (1.2.x). The table below illustrates how the build system is designed to function:
    Minimum SDK Selected Available Target Devices What We Build
    2.1.x A 2.1.x PRG for A
    1.3.x A, B 2.1.x PRG for A, 1.3.x PRG for B,
    1.2.x A, B, C 2.1.x PRG for A, 1.3.x PRG for B, 1.2.x PRG for C
    It can sometimes be difficult to troubleshoot this issue due to a bug in our build system. The Build For Device Wizard may build a PRG for a target VM version lower than expected for a given device. The result is that a PRG made with the Build For Device Wizard will operate without issue on a device, but the same app will fail with a "Too many arguments" error when using a PRG from the App Export Wizard (i.e. installed from the store). As a consequence, it can be difficult to obtain a useful call stack in the CIQ_LOG.txt. We have a fix for this that will be included in an upcoming release of the SDK.
    Last edited by Brandon.ConnectIQ; 04-24-2018, 02:01 PM.