Life Expectancy 935 and battery

Well, my 935 turns 5 years old this month and recenltly I have had more blank screens and BSODs than befoer and it goes through the battery faster.
But the darned thing always comes back.
I am debating on replacing it with a Vivoactive 4 [which should be adequate for me in terms of features]
Any insights on the actual life expectancy of these things?  It is tempting to buy a new watch on the other hand...........

  • My fr 935 is well over 5 years old.

    Battery in gps mode is less than 10 hours. So I have to charge every 4 or 5 days and cannot go on a long run or bike ride with 30% or less left. On the other hand, with some planning I can still do a whole day hiking.

    Had a blue screen of death a month ago which could only be solved by a factory reset.

    Firmware is still full of bugs which aren’t going to be solved any more.

    Heartrate sensor is cracked, but fine for daily use. For workouts I use a cheststrap anyway.

    Buttons are stil ok. 1 isn’t that clicky anymore but works fine.

    Screen is still crips. I have a screenprotector but only because I think that looks better.

    Apart from that, the watch still does what I need, and newer models doen’t have any new must have features.

    Yes, tempted for a new gadget, but it wouldn’t change the way I train/trail/bike/hike in any way. So I just keep my forerunner 935 for some time more.

    I looked at the new Coros Apex 2, but it’s kinda disappointing. Not cheaper than garmin but still lacks must have features for me (mostly navigation with tbt alerts)

    My fr 935 is at them moment the best and most cost effective watch for me.

  • So I did do a factory reset; last night it has been a few years--then went through the pain of setting up all the screens etc.

    I do hope it holds as I really don't see any gotcha gimmies that I really need on a new watch and wonder if they last as well as this one. This already has some more features than I need. Mainly I am tracking day to day improvements and HR zones as well as using for calorie tracking, sleep tracking, etc.  The stair thing never really worked for me so I turned off steps but the elevation data is fine on GPS.

     I use a screen protector too and have since I got it. 

    I think part of my issue is getting a good connection via usb (which I certainly need for the more frequent charging- seems like every 2-3 days. Think I will just charge and sync via cable each time.

    Honestly I still have a nearly 15 year old Garmin handheld but the watch gets as good a fix as a newer handheld (62S, however old that is....anymore patch antennas have really does the phone)

  • Yeh, the cable connector is really a pain to use. It happens too often for me that I connected my watch to a cable to charge it and find out an hour later that the cable fell out and my watch isn’t charged.

    Newer garmin watches still have this stupid connector.

  • Update: these instructions are for the world version of the 935, NOT the APAC version!

    Hello. If you have a forerunner 935 you will know that version 21.00 will kill your battery life and routes and courses won't work reliably. To solve this I created a firmware file with version 13.30 which was the last reliable 935 firmware.

    Warning: you might lose your existing run data and metrics, but you will get double the standby and using GPS battery life, so it is worth it in the long run.

    Download firmware v13.30 file here: Mirror1: Mirror2:

    Instructions: -Connect your garmin watch to your computer using the cable -Navigate to the 'GARMIN' folder -Inside this folder copy this GUPDATE.GCD file -Safely remove your 935 from the cable -A prompt will ask you if you want to install version 24.00 now or later tonight, don't worry, there is no such version. I guarantee it is version 13.30 -Choose 'Install Now' -935 watch will upgrade and reboot

    To confirm: go to Settings -- System -- About and ensure this now says version 13.30

    I have tried on 3 Garmin 935 watches and it worked on every one with no bugs.

  • Why a new location to download from? There has been an archive for ages (

    One, that doesn't say it tries to install version 24.00.

    Rule 1. Don't install software form dubious sources.

    Rule 2. Don't use software that is tampered with.

    And the old firmware fixes battery issues? My 935 id almost 6 years old. It is expected that battery capacity is down. No firmware will solve that.

    Old firmware solves gps issues? I doubt that. The gps firmware isn't part of the watch firmware and there is no way to downgrade the gps firmware. 

  • I have come to accept the shorter battery life and am being more focused on keeping the contacts clean.  I did not try any sort of upgrade to downgrade.  It does what it needs to and I am not sure some of the "newer" features are that accruate. The heartrate sensor still seems accurate. It is a bit wonky sometimes with garmin express but it is usually a connection issue. Probably worn down contacts.

  • You can't easily downgrade from version 21.00 to any other version unless you are a programmer and hack the watch to accept lower versoin files. This is due to old firmware files containing their firmware version. Version 21.00 won't allow you to downgrade to any version before 21.00, so people are struggling to even install an old BETA software.

    The ONLY changes to firmware 13.30 made, which anybody technical posting here can download the files and confirm the very same, is that this version in the file is reported as version 24.00. There are 3 separate files within firmware, so I have changed only one file that contains two references to the version number. I changed this hexadecimal from 13.30 to 24.00.

    Why? Because 24 is higher than 21, so if your watch is on version 21 and it sees an update file with any number higher than 21 then it will install it. If it sees version 13.30 it will NOT allow it. Even downgrading to a beta firmware now is almost impossible on version 21.00. There are zero other changes to the software. If you are technical then you can use GitHub to use Garmin firmware parser to examine the .BIN files. Also: what do you expect someone to do? Try to steal your heart rate? Give me a break. Garmin purpoesfully brake their watches before a new model comes out, that's why version 21.00 is a dumpster fire. However looking at the 955 forums, most recent garmin watches are dumpster fires.

    I will stick with version 13.30. For me it's twice the battery life in GPS mode for long trail running and hiking. If you need more technical information let me know.

  • If you have an easier way that what I've mentioned to downgrade from version 21.00 to another version, such as 13.30, post them here. From the Garmin Developer forums I am positive you don't.

    If you want 10 hours GPS life use version 21.00. If you want 20 to 22 hours GPS life try version 13.30, it was one of the last good firmwares for the 935. I was just trying to help people because version 21 is so rubbish.

  • In my experience, the reduces gps time from 20+ hours to only 10 came with gps firmware 2.70 (which came with firmware 13.x). There is no way to downgrade the gps firmware. Even if you install your version of firmware 13, gps will still be 2.70.

    I’ve tried downgrading to 13, and even 12 some time ago. Made no difference at all, for me.

    The problem is, if you ask 10 people with battery issues with their garmin devices, you get at least 11 ‘solutions’, and none work in your case.

    I sport between 5 and 8 hours a week. My watch is almost 6 years old and still does what I want it to do. Only have to charge it every 4 or 5 days. I can live with that.

  • What someone might try to do? Turn a gps watch into a stalker device?

    And yes, devices with garmin software are dumpster fires.

    alternatives? Suunto. Quite expensive and just not there (I used to have suunto’s)

    Polar. A bit less expensive, but a bit more limited for day to day use.

    Coros. Not that cheap any more and quite rough around the edges.

    My forerunner 935 is perfect for my needs and the cheapest option for the coming years.