The Garmin Forerunner 55 is clearly intended for the runner: Primarily, you can record both outdoor running via GPS and indoor running on the treadmill or indoor track. Garmin has also added tracking for cycling (indoor and outdoor) and lap swimming into the watch. However, the Forerunner 55 is overwhelmed with sports such as canoeing, strength training or outdoor swimming – so it cannot be called a multi-sport watch.
Garmin deliberately dispenses with a touchscreen, which actually makes it easier to use while running. You navigate with five buttons (three on the left, two on the right of the housing) which, after a while to get used to, quickly lead to the desired destination, even during a strenuous running training. In such a situation, a touchscreen would quickly lead to frustrating operating errors. As with the other models of the Forerunner and Fenix series, Garmin uses MIP (memory in pixels) as display technology – this is particularly energy-saving; therefore the display is always on. It is not switched on when the arm is moved or when a button is pressed, which improves readability enormously. In addition, the MIP display is transflective. This means that in contrast to other types of displays, incident sunlight even increases readability – ideal for outdoor sports.
We really liked the possibility of being able to customize training pages as desired. So if you would like to read your speed, pulse and step frequency at the same time – no problem. You shouldn’t overdo it with the amount of information, because the display is one of the smallest in the competitive field with a diagonal of 26 mm. In addition, the display resolution of a meager 203 ppi makes small elements appear pixelated. This also means that some of the watch faces offered can hardly be used.