Earlier this year, I published my review of the Coros Vertix 2. The watch is a terrific tracking tool for all kinds of outdoor adventures and sporting pursuits. However, it’s the climbing-specific features—developed alongside legendary rock climber Tommy Caldwell—that really make the Vertix 2 unique. In fact, in my opinion, it’s the best GPS watch for tracking rock climbing and bouldering.
Trail runners and mountaineers—requiring a robust navigation tool—though, have needed to look elsewhere. That’s not to say that the mapping features of the Coros Vertix 2 are redundant; they are, in fact, very useful. However, more advanced mapping features—such as turn-by-turn navigation—have only been found in select competitor devices, such as the Garmin Fenix 7 or Suunto 9 Peak Pro.
Coros Vertix 2: Turn-by-turn navigation
That’s what makes the latest Coros firmware update such a big deal; it includes a new turn-by-turn navigation feature for the brand’s flagship watch, as well as the Apex 2 and Apex 2 Pro.
Other Coros wearables that support breadcrumb trail navigation—namely the Vertix 1, Apex Pro and Pace 2— will also benefit from turn-by-turn directions. Unfortunately though, due to limited memory capacity, the original Apex will not support the update.
The feature will remain in a public beta for approximately 3-6 months to allow the team to optimise performance. However, you can sign up here to be part of the beta and get instant access to turn-by-turn navigation.
Coros has been running closed testing of the new navigation feature for over two months. According to the press release, the feature is functioning well and should work automatically, regardless of whether the route has been built using the Coros app, synched with Strava, or manually imported via a GPX file.
Coros August 2023 firmware update: Other features
Alongside the new Coros Vertix 2 turn-by-turn navigation feature, the August 2023 firmware update includes a number of noteworthy additions.
- Custom watch faces: Elevate your look with new customisable watch faces. Go analogue or digital. Pick a personal photo or choose from the Coros collection.
- Stats summary: Quickly view summarised stats from your recent training in daily, weekly, or monthly views.
- Watermark image sharing: Post-activity workout images now allow more customisation. Users can add data options for text overlay, such as distances covered that month, earned badges, personal record statistics, and daily training. Add your image, or choose one provided by Coros. Easily share watermark images on social media.
- Easier route sharing: Share and send routes to others over text messages and social media. Select the link to open the route and view data like elevation, distance, waypoints, and more.
- Workouts for trail running: Workouts are now available for trail running. Users can design custom workout plans in trail run mode, as well as set elevation goals for a trail run.
- Strava notes sync: Automatic upload of unique Coros data can now be sent directly to your Strava activity notes. This is available for running, treadmills, trail running, track running, outdoor climbing, indoor climbing, and jump rope. This feature is enabled once you have connected your Strava to your Coros app.
- Accessible RHR data: Resting Heart Rate during the day will now be predicted based on sleep heart rate, which will provide an automatic way to get your RHR data.
- Favourite locations: Create favourite locations on the explore page for quick access when creating new routes. Before drawing a route, click the location and edit and name the location directly.
- Merge points on custom routes: Merge ‘start’ and ‘end’ points on your routes created on the Explore page. Merge the points in the upper right corner to the left of the bottom button.
- Stryd next-gen metric support: Collect Stryd’s new ‘Impact Loading Rate’ metric using your Coros watch and view it in your Coros app. Then, use the pre-existing platform sync to transfer your data and view your ‘Lower Body Stress Score’ in Stryd’s app.
Turn-by-turn navigation is a highly anticipated update for the Coros Vertix 2, and one that I discussed in my full review of the watch. While Coros is a much smaller company than the likes of Garmin, the team has proven time and time again that they can compete with giants in the GPS watch space.
Once the turn-by-turn navigation feature is stable, I hope to see on-device routing being added. Let me know your thoughts on this and what features you’d like to see in the comments below.