How to: Garmin’s Semi-Secret Triathlon Display Mode (aka ‘Extended Display mode’)


Like any true triathlete, I violate all the rules of common sense. The most important one being to never try something new on race day. But given I have a long history of violating said rule, I figured a few weeks ago that a local triathlon was the perfect time to try out Garmin’s almost never talked about ‘Extended Display’ triathlon-focused feature. This function allows you to mirror your watch to your Garmin Edge bike computer. Thus ensuring that your data fields and total race time match exactly.

While I’d tried connecting the sensors together about a year ago, that was basically a backyard adventure. Certainly nothing I’d attempted in a workout, let alone a race. So I figured I’d tell you how to set it up, how it works, how it went, and whether its worth doing at all.  Or, you can just watch this video. Your choice:

And yes, I filmed that video two weeks ago. I had high hopes of productivity that day. Not sure what I was thinking.

Getting it setup:

Since this is a two device thing, that means you’ll need to take steps on both devices. My little guide below will make it seem far more complicated than it is. Seriously, the one sentence version is: ‘On your Edge open up the remote display option, while then on your watch add it as a remote display sensor. Done’.

And sure, I could leave it there and tell you to figure it out. But then I’d have wasted all these photos. So, let’s give you the photo tour. First up, on your Garmin Edge device (Edge 130/520 Plus/530/820/830/1030) go into the menu and select ‘Extended Display Mode’. There’s no meaningful options here. It just opens up and goes into a waiting pattern saying ‘Searching for watch’.

DSC_1046 DSC_1048

The only options you get on your Edge unit for the extended display mode are related to the display timeout:


So, with that set, your Edge is ready to receive stuff from your Garmin watch. In this case the watches that support this are the Forerunner 245/245M/645/645M/735XT/935/945, MARQ, and Fenix 5 Series/5 Plus/Chronos Series. So on your watch, go into the sensors menu. The same place you’d pair a cadence sensor, power meter, etc… Then scroll down to add a new ‘Extended Display Device’

DSC_1044 DSC_1045

After a few seconds, it’ll find the Edge, and show it just like it would any other sensors (complete with a sensor ID):

DSC_1050 DSC_1054

Here’s a bit of geekery coolness for you: Technically speaking, any company can implement what Garmin has done here. And in fact, in theory (ok, a lot of theory), Wahoo could make it compatible with Garmin’s watches. Or Stages could do the same with Garmin’s watches. Or whatever. It’s all an ANT+ open standard device profile, called the ‘ANT+ Remote Display’. It’s actually exactly what Garmin Varia Vision heads up display does. Same exact tech and functionality, just a different device type.


In fact, one 3rd party company has already used it: ProShift. They use the same thing to allow you to broadcast information from their automated gear shifting system to the Varia Vision glasses. Cool, huh?

Ok, back to your Edge. At this point you’ll see it connected and showing data metrics. You know that it’s in extended display mode because the top two metrics are in black, whereas the bottom portion of the page is white:


Now that it’s set up, let’s go to race day.

Race Day:

Ok, so here you are, ready to try this out. Obviously, I’d suggest you try this out on a training day first. But if you’re a maverick, then go forth and give it a whirl on your first Ironman. Or maybe Kona.

All you need to do on your bike is simply put the Edge unit into extended display mode. It’ll just wait there forever for its buddy to show up and dance:


Seriously, it won’t fall asleep in this mode. It’s just hanging out. Given the battery life of any of the Garmin Edge devices is well more than any bike-leg of any triathlon (except those crazy deca ones), there’s no harm in leaving it there while you’re off swimming. Of course, if you’ve got your backlight set at full brightness for some reason, that’s on you.

Meanwhile, your watch has already remembered the Edge as a sensor. So you’ll never have to do anything on your watch. Instead, go off and swim. Try not to get kicked in the face. Then exit the water:

See, the watch is already looking for its friend. And before you even get to your bike, it’ll have found it. That was the case for me. Given ANT+ has a range of upwards of 30-40 meters in unobstructed open air, it’ll easily beat you to your bike. Once you arrive at your bike, you’ll see your current times displayed on the Edge unit, sorta like this, assuming you had gotten horrifically lost on the swim and then had breakfast in T1:


Here, let me break it down for you:

Top Line: Total Multisport Time (aka your race time) – 2:49:19
2nd Line: Current Lap time (somewhat the current sport time) – 13:49
Everything else: Exactly same data fields as your watch

So the first two are static. You can’t change them. But the bottom ones? They mirror the exact fields as your watch (within a second or so). See, check it out:


And you can change to different pages like you normally can, it’ll simply iterate through whatever pages you’ve set up on your watch. Sometimes it gets a bit quirky. For example if you look at the watch below it shows my HR as 71, and the Edge mirrors that too. But the watch uses the colors around the edge of the bezel to show my HR, whereas the Edge unit shows my HR zone as the numerical equivalent (0.7 in this case).


Now, let’s go back to that 2nd line, the ‘Lap Time’. This field was a bit confusing for me on the race, because mentally I expected this to mean ‘Sport time’, as in, showing me my bike time while I’m riding. The top was total time, so that was Swim + T1 + Bike, logical.

But lap time was exactly what it implied – the actual lap itself. In my case my watch had been configured to use 5-mile splits for the cycling mode (the default on Garmin devices). So at five miles into the race, it reset that lap, and I lost my bike split. Grr.

There is a workaround though. And you’ll see it below. The ‘Timer’ data field shows the current timer time of that sport, so in this case, 2:38 would be the bike time.


But to me that’s a bit clunky. While I’m sure there’s someone out there that wants ‘Lap time’ up top, I suspect 99.98% of us really want ‘Current sport’ time. Ideally Garmin would give us just one option here, to toggle between ‘Lap Time’ and ‘Current Sport’ time.  I mean, I could ask for lots of options, but this would be the biggest one.  Especially because there’s many reasons people might use custom laps in a race. But given Garmin doesn’t allow manual laps in triathlon mode (only auto-laps), the ‘value’ of showing lap time comparative to Suunto/Polar (which do allow manual laps) is pretty low.

As a random side note, the feature overall worked well for me during the bike segment. There was a brief moment for about 1-2 seconds where the connection was lost, and then it resumed automatically. Could have just been some random interference, but no biggie.

In any case, once you’re done with the bike, you simply run away.

You’ll hit lap on your watch and then enter T2 just like you normally would. Technically, the Edge will actually show this. It doesn’t really truly care what mode you’re in. It’s just duplicating your display. Then you literally run away from your bike computer. You can leave it there on if you want, or turn it off. Once you’re out of range the display will go back into the ‘waiting’ mode. Doesn’t matter, nothing was recording on it – just like a fart in the wind.

At this point you just finish your run/race like normal, and then upload your race afterwards to Garmin Connect just like normal (from your watch).


Here’s the list of the most common questions I suspect folks will have:

Wait, when was this added?

Oddly enough, last summer. First quietly in a beta firmware update. I had pointed it out then, but never had a chance to really dig in.

What Edge units does this support?

The feature is available on the Edge 130, 520 Plus, 530, 820, 830, and 1030.

What watches work with this?

It’s currently on the Forerunner 245/245 Music, FR645/645 Music, FR735XT, FR935, FR945, Fenix 5 Series, Fenix 5 Plus Series, Fenix Chronos, and MARQ watches. I haven’t checked things like the Descent, though I suspect it works there too. I would not expect to see it in non-multisport low end range watches, but would expect it for any future multisport watches.

Can 3rd parties add support for this?

Yes, technically speaking they can. They ‘just’ have to follow the ANT+ Extended Display profile. Now, what catches are there once they try and do that is an entirely different question. But in theory it’s possible. Companies that make ANT+ bike computers like Wahoo, Stages, Lezyne and more could all offer this as an option. And while neither Suunto or Polar have ANT+ on their watches at the moment, they too could technically do it. Of course, I wouldn’t expect them to.

Does this hurt my battery life?

On the watch side, my guess is non-meaningfully. ANT+ sensors (which is what this is) typically have a negligible drain on battery life. On the Edge side, my guess would be that it actually helps battery, since it’s not technically recording anything (and I believe GPS is disabled atop that).

So it doesn’t record a file on the Edge?

No, it’s just like a TV screen for your watch. TiVo this is not. So that’s one significant downside, as I typically use my Edge unit as a backup in case something goes wrong with my watch (even due to user error, like pressing the lap button). So at the end of the day, there’s no file created on the Edge, only on your watch.

Do I get to see my normal Edge data fields?

No, and that’s really the second big limitation. You’ll only see the data fields configured your watch, and since Garmin watches only support four data fields per page, that means that’s the max it’ll send to the Edge unit (plus the total time/lap time fields at the top). Where this matters (beyond just wanting to configure/show more data fields), is for newer features or more advanced features. For example, you can’t see ClimbPro on your Edge, since you aren’t riding a course anymore. Same goes for the more advanced Cycling Dynamics pages and such – or even the map page. None show up.

Can I disable the total time/lap time fields at the top of the Edge?

No, and honestly, that’d sorta defeat the entire purpose of this feature. Those two fields stay there no matter which data pages you show. Always in black, always there.

If I iterate data fields on my watch, does it change my bike computer fields?

Assuming you mean if you just press up/down on your watch, then no, it won’t also change your bike computer at the same time.

Where are my sensors paired?

Totally on your watch. The Edge won’t use any sensors pairings it has.

Should I turn auto-lap off?

Personally, I would. At least for the bike. To me it just makes it confusing. But again, that’s a personal choice.

What if I don’t have any more questions?

Good, I don’t have any more answers.

Going forward:

Some of you might say that this is a useless feature. Perhaps even say that it’s exactly the kind of feature that Garmin shouldn’t implement and instead fix bugs. But I think that’s incorrect.

That’s a binary way of thinking. And frankly, it’s the same thinking that nearly put Polar out of business years back when they ignored things like GPS and smartphone connectivity, assuming they were all fads. Like it or not, Garmin is a tech company now. And tech companies have to keep innovating. Or they die. That’s binary, and reality. Doing features like this doesn’t mean they can’t also have resources that fix and focus on bugs. It requires more people, yes, but Garmin’s recent financial results indicate that shouldn’t be a problem.

Sure, the way this feature is implemented today isn’t perfect. But I see it as an interesting first attempt. I’d like to see three specific tweaks though:

A) Option to adjust the top two static data fields on the Edge (don’t need tons of fields, just a handful like ‘Sport time’)
B) Option to enable ‘backup recording’ on the Edge that automatically occurs when you trigger the ‘bike’ sport
C) Option to add/enable certain Edge-specific data pages (like the map)

That’s it. At that point I think it’ll be a much more useful feature. And see, I didn’t even ask for too much this time.

With that – thanks for reading, and good luck on your next race!


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  1. runner-33

    Cool howto, thanks! One quick addition: FR245 also supports Extended Display in the sensor menu (as per Firmware 2.70). But of course it’s no tri watch, like the FR645.

    • Fred2

      And the FR 645 isn’t really a triathlon watch either – no open water, no input from a power meter, no multisport. Since the extended display only mirrors the watch, you won’t be able to see power on your head unit if you are using a Forerunner 645.

    • Brandon Gittelman

      The lack of power data is what makes this pointless for me (with a 245M). It’s a shame that Garmin can’t just “unlock” being able to connect to PM’s when connect in ED mode. It’s clearly a software limitation on the 245/645.

    • Anirudh

      They really want you to buy the 945, which kinda sucks (being forced to buy a more expensive watch, that is.)

    • To be fair, it’s also offered on the far cheaper FR735XT (and almost two years old now), as well as the FR935. So it’s not really limited to the FR945.

    • Anirudh

      Fair point. I wasn’t keen on the FR735XT because it was an older model, but in hindsight, that would have worked better.

      Cycling and cardio is pretty much all I use my FR 645M for, and now it seems like I paid more than I should have for less functionality than I would like.

    • Chris McReynolds

      Why is it “wrong” to pay more for premium features? Also, the FR735 (not to mention the perfectly acceptable 935) is supposed to be a pretty decent “tri” watch and I’m pretty sure it can handle power data (but I’m not sure about Cycling Dynamics, which you do get on Edge 520 and higher, not sure about the lower models).

  2. Joost Dijkstra

    Ik tried this option a while ago during a brick-training. I didn’t use the multisport profile but wanted to switch the activityprofile on my 735xt from bike to running manualy while connected with the extended display (Garmin edge 130). Sadly this didn’t work. Pressing the down button on my watch did nothing…

  3. Gavin Race

    Thanks Ray.

    I’m considering using this but I have a couple of questions:

    Historically, I’ve paired my 4iiii power meter to my Edge and I’ve had to calibrate it in advance of my swim so that it is ready to go. Presumably, I’d need to pair the 4iiii to my fenix 5 Plus in advance? Will this get picked up automatically as I come back from my swim and will it be all set to go (i.e. still calibrated)?

    Is there anything that’s not as good on the fenix 5 Plus compared to the Edge 530 that I will lose functionality or quality with? Is GPS not as good for example?

    Finally, I presume if I use pre-defined Best Bike Split power plan on the Edge, this functionality is lost?

    Many thanks again for all of your advice and work.

    • Richard Mercer

      For your first question, you can connect your Fenix and calibrate before the race as before and the calibration value will not change. It should also connect as soon as the power meter “wakes”.

    • Gavin Race

      Thanks Richard. Good news.

      It looks like you can setup Best Bike Split power plan (Data Fields) on fenix 5 Plus’s, albeit having to manually upload the course/power plan.

      So, on that basis, it looks like a goer to replace how I use it now. Some testing is in order.

      Out of interest – has anyone used a fenix 5 Plus over an Ironman distance (around 11hrs in total) using GPS, connected to external HRM, and power meter and Edge in extended display mode connected (for the bike part)? If fully charged, will it last? I don’t fancy testing that. :-)

    • Ryan

      I was just going to test this today. Weird that you are not able to download using the sync app on the plus. We have heard some issues on the 530/830 as well so are looking into that. I will say due to some bluetooth file size issues we do have to reduce the fidelity on longer courses to get under the garmin cap.

    • Gavin Race

      If you do test it Ryan, let me know how you go.

      I can get the Race Sync app on the Edge but not the f5+

    • Chris

      I used my F5 plus for an Ironman, fully charged (with a HRM the whole way and power meter on the bike) and it died on me with around 2kms to go, circa 10hrs 40mins in. Wasn’t happy.

      My swim was also apparently 50 odd meters in total, due to its reliable open water swim recording =p.

    • MattH

      Interesting insights on F5+ battery life. I recently completed an IM race and was concerned about whether my Fenix 5 plus would last the distance.

      Paired to ANT+ power meter for the ride, and an external HRM throughout, im happy to report both me and the watch made it to the end in around 12 and half hours. Watch had 11% left at the end; i had closer to 1% energy left.

      I also turned off phone connection and had shortest setting for display timeout on watch. But didnt use extended display on the ride as i didnt know it existed

    • Gavin Race

      Interesting. So, I guess the next question is (talking out loud):

      If I were to not use Extended Display Mode and use the Watch to record GPS, time, distance etc. but not power/speed/cadence, then use the Edge separately for the ride portion and have that show and record power/speed/cadence, I’m guessing that’ll help in seeing the Watch through the IM fairly comfortably?

      Is there anyway of stripping your power data out of the Edge activity and somehow incorporate it into the Multisport Activity in Garmin?

    • MattH

      I dont think its possible to combine activities from different devices into 1 multisport activity. But im not sure why you want to do that?

      My backup plan when i wasnt sure my F5+ would of lasted the entire IM was similar to your idea; use the watch for the swim and run legs, and my Edge 520 for the ride (recording power and HR). F5+ in watch mode during the ride, not using GPS and virtually no battery.

      This would of course end up with 3 seperate activities in garmin connect, but im ok with that – thats better than an incomplete run activity if the watch died near the end of the marathon.

      I tested the watch only option on some long brick sessions before the race (6hr ride, 2hr run) and as it ended up with around 45% battery after those sessions, i was pretty confident that the F5+ would last the entire IM. Good luck in your race.

    • Gavin Race

      Thanks Matt.

      I’d only want to do that to have a nice Multi-sport Activity in Garmin with a full data-set but you are right of course. I can just have the 3 full activities separately and I wouldn’t lose any sleep. :-)

  4. Tuure Laurinolli

    I get redirected from this article to scam site. The initial redirect was to [Removed]

    It seems that Firefox debugger doesn’t allow breaking on navigate-out-of-this-page events, so I can’t pinpoint the culprit, but it seems that some advertiser present here is doing its best to get me to write down some personal information.

    • That’s odd. The only advertiser I use is Google Adsense, which redirects are unheard of. I haven’t had any other reports of it (and the backend platform is constantly monitored for malware/etc..).

      What was the platform you were using? The only ‘different’ think about this post compared to others is the inclusion of YouTube player in there.

    • Tuure Laurinolli

      Firefox on Windows.

      I eventually thought of trying to capture a DOM event trace, which should have revealed the culprit, but it didn’t occur anymore.

      Perhaps something slipped through Google’s net momentarily.

  5. fiatlux

    What about an option to ping one’s Edge to find one’s bicycle in the transition zone? ;-)

  6. Virginia

    This is one of my favorite features on the edge 130 and a big part off why I upgraded from my hand me down edge 200. Note that if you get tired of having your watch look for your bike computer on every activity and turn it off it is important to turn the sensor back on *before* starting your race. My 735xt was unhappy with my attempts to pair it mid-T1. Still, if you temporarily brick your watch you’ve got a bike computer right there.

  7. Andrew M


    Using up/down buttons on the watch will iterate through the screens on the Edge. You can also iterate through the watch screens using the Edge controls.

    • Andrew M

      Oops, my bad. The watch buttons will not change the Edge display. But you can scroll through the watch screens from the Edge.

  8. StephenA

    >Some of you might say that this is a useless feature. Perhaps even say that it’s exactly the kind of feature that Garmin shouldn’t implement and instead fix bugs. But I think that’s wrong.

    Agreed, because it’s the kind of thing that will encourage people to upgrade from an 810/buy a second head unit. (Now pricing an Edge 130 for duathlons)

  9. I’ve been using this with my FR935 and an Edge 130 and it works well.

    The only strange thing is I can’t turn the 130 off when it’s in extended display mode. The device appears to turn off but then immediately turns back on. Exit extended display mode and it shuts down just fine

  10. Its surprisingly hard these days to do this, and honestly the Edge is overkill. Admittedly its been a little while since I’ve looked.

    Any chance that you could recommend a simple, long-battery-life ANT/BT display unit? Since my watch is logging, being able to have a decent display without the battery killing GPS, etc, that’s cheap enough that it can be left on the bike without worry would be great. They used to exist but completely died off a few years ago.

    • The Real Bob

      If garmin would create this, they would make some money. How awesome would it be if I could attach a cheap display type of device with awesome battery life to all my bikes individually.

      So I could walk up to my bike, turn on my 935, have the display device on the bike auto turn on and connect to my 935(like tail lights or headlight, varia radar, etc) then go. No fuss about turning on an edge, not worrying about leaving an expensive edge unit on a bike.

      It would be great. Start company making these. I will take 4.

  11. Freek

    The Garmin Fenix Chronos also has the extended display sensor option.

  12. Zac Lionakis

    Hi Ray, excellent one

    I have been using it for a few weeks now and it works great. 945 and 830.

    Also paired with a garmin remote so I can control the 830 from the aerobars without moving at all (control installed just next to the di2 button)

  13. Richard Mercer

    I used this for the first time in a race at the weekend. Not specifically an extended display issue, but the lack of manual laps is an issue for me. The race was Olympic distance and consisted of 8 laps of just under 5k. Going by distance alone 9 laps would have been closer to 40k, so it was short, but 8 laps we were told to do. Being able to press the lap button on the watch (or better still, the Edge) would be VERY useful for counting them. Even better still would be to allow the Di2 buttons to allow scrolling the display or creating laps as I do when in Edge only mode. For races like this it’s probably better to use the Edge the old fashioned way so I can. ;)

  14. Kevin LaCour

    Another benefit I see is from the HR strap side. Many people do not like wearing a HR strap, but have to for the bike/Edge. To be able to use the optic sensor HR on my 935 and ditch the strap is a biggie. Not the biggest, but definitely a close second to the data displays match.

    • Not sure if you know, but you can actually broadcast your optical HR sensor straight to your Edge already. :)

      It’s called ‘Re-broadcasting’, and is an option within the sensor settings on your watch. It allows you to pair the HR sensor on your watch just like a regular HR strap.

    • Kevin LaCour

      (thinking out loud) I wish I knew then what I know now …

      A big thank you, as always. I’ve already shared your article on my tri club’s FB page. It’s generating a lot of interest and discussion.

    • I’ve thought about this too, but the HRM-Tri gives the nice running dynamics too and the HR is more accurate than the wrist-based, so I don’t think I could ditch my strap.

    • Raul V

      In ED you don’t have to broadcast HR ‘manually’. It’s in the watch batch already. I also wonder if watch can cast both simultanously. If it can there’s the problem you can’t mix in the solo HR in the display.
      You could use it in bike training, having the Edge register. But another problem: OHR is only an ‘about’ value….

  15. Andrew

    I use this because my watch has more first beat post race metrics than my edge – it’s easier to just let the watch run the activity than using both and deleting it on the edge. My second bike has a 130 no specifically because of this feature

  16. Roberto Cuadro

    Funny… I didnt know that people didnt know about this. This is how I handled my first Sprint Tri and I liked it quite a bit because I really wanted to keep on file for the event while being able to see data like power and heartrate.

    On the other hand I could have just used my Edge 1030 like normal, to get all the extra pages, and simply discarded the Edge file after the bike portion since my Fenix 5 would have recorded everything anyhow.

  17. Gavin Race

    Can you have your power meter connected to both a F5+ AND your Garmin Edge?

  18. One feature not mentioned is navigation – a feature that the Edge has that makes it more than a TV screen in extended display mode.

    I have a Edge 520 Plus and a 935 watch. In extended display mode, the Edge will navigate courses I have loaded onto the Edge.

    I load the bike route of the race onto the Edge. I set the edge onto extended display mode. When I come into T1 and jump on my bike, the Edge will recognize (while in extended display mode) that I’m starting a preloaded course. On top of the fields it displays from my watch, navigation alerts pop up to give directions (right turn in 500 meters, etc.). I’ve only done it a couple times, and I haven’t yet scrolled through to see whether or not the Edge gives a dedicated navigation screen while in extended display mode, but I know it gives the guidance for loaded courses.

    I don’t have the course loaded on my watch, so it has to be the Edge that’s navigating.

    As others have said, I’d love the ability to adjust the Edge screens (without changing my watch), but I really like this feature. Before Extended Display mode, I would use the quick release kit and pop my watch onto my bike. Extended display is better, easier, and faster. And – I don’t drop my watch while transferring it from wrist to bike and back (done that a few times under the pressure of T1 and T2).

    • Bene

      Its a shame Garmins documentation of watches and edges is so bad. A lot of features are only explained in one sentence, data fields get no documentation at all.

      I knew about extended mode and told a lot of people without knowing it is able to navigate.

  19. I’d like to see them implement the reverse functionality … allow my watch (in my case, a VA3) to display extra data from my Edge 1030.

    • Roberto Cuadro

      What purpose would this serve?
      I have honestly been thinking about it and I can figure out a time where I would prefer to look at my watch vice down at the Edge.

  20. Hector

    I find this the best feature ever. I have a long lasting watch with gps and i can see power cadence on bike.

    I saw a comment above this not working for powermeter, YEs it does, just configure your standard say 4 or 3 field screen with power on your watch. I think it picks up the first 3 or 4 screen configurations on your bike profile.

  21. Steve

    Great review. Seeing you wearing the Garmin Marq Athlete reminds me that it has been quite a while now since the Marq was announced and a few weeks since it began shipping and would love to see your in-depth review. When can we expect that? Thanks.

  22. Dan

    Does this work with the Varia radar? If it does, which device will the radar connect to? I would imagine there may be an issue with delay if the radar connects to the watch…

  23. TL

    Ray, any chance this works with the older Forerunner 910?

  24. Steven Weber

    Seems that this feature would eliminate the necessity of a quick release which Alex already mentioned. Although i would like to see this feature on an Edge 520 and Fenix 3

  25. Chris

    Now Fenix 3 love. Hate it when companies (garmin/apple) limit easy feature like these to new devices only.

    • The challenge with backporting is that it requires re-releasing firmware for older devices. That in turn requires testing everything to ensure other things didn’t break. I guess the question is where to draw the line?

      The Fenix 3 came out more than 4 years ago now. Is the line 2 years? 3 years? 4 years…5? I don’t know the answer to that. I think to me it’s at least Current + one version back (so in this case, Fenix 5 Plus is current, one version back is Fenix 5). Maybe for certain features Current + 2 versions back (which would be Fenix 3HR).

      One historical thing to remember is that Garmin ran out of space on the Fenix 3 firmware. It as somewhat a big deal at the time, and a core reason why development stopped. It was the first product in the Fenix family that supported Connect IQ, and they ultimately learned a ton from it, but there were some unintended consequences of that major shift.

    • Julien

      Is it the same problem between the 520 & 520 Plus?

      I’ve a Fenix 5+ and a 520… I would have loved to be able to extend the view on the edge. Any other option to do it?

  26. Bret C Schapman

    Are any of the edge displays waterproof? I asked Garmin for this feature almost a year ago for paddle boarding. Right now many of us velcro our watches to our boards, wearing HR monitors to see speed, HR and distance. It would be nice to have a larger display and be able to wear the watch for stroke rate data that is lost when not wearing the watch.

  27. Andrey

    Hi Ray,
    Thanks for the article.
    I didn’t try to use this feature during Tri, but used it in normal commute.
    And still couldn’t decide is it useful on commute or not :)

    But what I would like to add is that if you turn Edge to sleep mode with top left button while it is in Extended Display Waiting mode, later when you turn it ON, Edge comes to that mode back.
    So you don’t need to keep it on during swimming leg and when you are at your bike in T1 just press this button to turn it on and Edge will connect to your watch while you are running out from transition zone.


  28. Sam

    Nice article Ray – I notice the 245/245M is included, how exactly would one use it during triathlon? Is there a secret mode for that too?? I have tiny wrists so a new Tri watch smaller than the 945 would appeal.

    I installed Workout Genius app on my 735XT and multi sport (Tri mode) works great, but I want to use the extended display mode.

  29. Pablo

    I’ve looked at this feature a while ago. because I wanted a cheap way to see some data fields, specially power on a computer. The watch takes care of everything, just needed an easier way to see it on the bike, but the options are limited. The devices supporting this feature are around $180/200 and with a 520 being $250 why not go full featured.
    I ended up buying a cheap Edge 510 and discard at the end of the ride, also got a Varia Vision but found that the extra weight on my sunglasses makes them shift from the current position

  30. Chris McReynolds

    I’m not seeing what the advantages are. I run an FR935 and Edge 520 each running in parallel. I get independent FIT files. If one device fails somehow (or I make some critical mistake pertaining to starting or stopping the recording, or a battery runs flat) then I have the other file as a backup. The main reason I use 2 is because I wanted to have a watch for all activities and a “bike computer” for displaying critical cycling data (which is what I have been doing since the Polar days). Running them both at the same time gives me all of that combined data plus redundancy in terms of recording.

  31. David T.

    I think this is great…I always end up tossing my bike file at the end of the race anyway. I have a Fenix 3 and a 520 but both are getting long in the tooth at this point so I’ve been considering my upgrade path. This makes it an easier decision. Really just one less thing to think about during a race since you can just leave it running. I do think they need to make the screens more configurable but even in the state that it’s in, I’m a fan.

  32. Lasse Reinboeng

    I had to smile reading “as I typically use my Edge unit as a backup in case something goes wrong with my watch (even due to user error, like pressing the lap button)” -> I spend 38 minutes in T1 during my last ;).

    But what I noticed with my FR935 (13.30) / Edge 1030 (7.50) that the Edge does sometimes not recognize the watch properly (“seraching for…”), although the 935 shows up “connected” in Display the sensor menu.

  33. Good timing! Tomorrow is my first triathlon, so I can still try this before race-day :-)

    • “might take you 20-30 seconds” was a bit optimistic, took me quite a few minutes and restarting the devices (fortunately no complete resets) before they would finally talk.
      But once done, it worked like a charm!

  34. Caleb

    I like this feature. I just wish they would make it so I could use my iPhone as the extended display.

  35. Philippe

    Used thuis feature in al the triatlons i did. Very happy with it. Combi Fr935 and Edge 820. When i swipe the pages On the 820 it goes to the second screen setup on the fr935.

  36. zq

    Instead, they should use the GPS from the edge unit and send back data to the watch to conserve the battery on the watch for long events like IM where the watch cannot do 16-17 hours

  37. Adi

    New product suggestion: a very-economically priced, edge 5xx sized display only unit.

    For many multi sport users with Garmin watches, such a display would remove the need for buying a separate bike computer (or fiddling the watch onto the bike handlebars).

    Since the display only needs ANT+ and, maybe Bluetooth, radios with no sensors or GPS receivers, it could have a lighter battery, yet with a longer life.

    I’m ready to buy such a neat, simple product today, to go with my Fénix 5.

    • Peter

      This. Whether Garmin or a third-party (are there no other manufacturers trying to do this?), this is exactly what I would want rather than another expensive unit recording pretty much the same thing the watch does. As a lowly mass-age grouper, the cycling specific data that one might miss out on is entirely redundant to me, as is navigation functions.

  38. Scott

    Interesting feature. What I would find even more useful is just being able to have the Edge powered up without the auto shut-off so I can hit the start button right after T1.

  39. Walton

    Maybe a mobile phone that supports ant+ can be used as an extended display. I am not sure whether the demo app for ant+ supports that function though.

  40. eric

    Question for those with the Edge 130 and FR935/945. When connected to a FR watch in extended display mode, will it show power balance? The lack of power balance in the 130, even though it will display average power, really put me off and stopped me dead cold from replacing my 500 with it.

  41. Richard Owen

    Used this last season a few times with a 130 and it was quite handy, although I’m normally concentrating on riding to have too much time to look at various screens. I have an Edge 530 now and would really love the ability to use connected devices / instruments on there rather than rely on the ones paired with my 935

    1. The barometer in my 935 has gone kaput, would love the option of using the functional one from the 530
    2. My Stages connection when in Aero is flaky at best and sometimes it disappears for minutes at a time. The 530 has no problem connecting but this means I would miss power and cadence on the bike.

    Also I really want ClimbPRO as a screen.

    This makes me think i’m probably not going to bother using the extended display functionality and instead just run the 530 in normal bike mode then trash the activity at the end – or at least delete it from Strava and just use the analysis in Garmin Connect.

  42. Love all of your reviews, man! Quick question: I have a Garmin 945, and have my phone mounted above my Stem on my bike. I only want to track data with the 945. Do you know of any way possible to get the equivalent of Extended Display Mode from the 945 to my phone? (Google Pixel 3XL)

  43. Mike Walker

    Any word on wahoo integrating extended display into their computers? I would jump on a wahoo bike computer if they supported extended display for triathlon. Thanks for your awesome info and insight!!

  44. Adam

    This profile isn’t really *OPEN*. At least compared to other ANT+ device oprofiles.

    Apparently they revised it in 2019 so it’s now? hidden behind the $1500 ANT+ membership paywall for ‘early adopters’. There are shipping products that use this profile. I can’t easily evaluate whether it’s worth spinning up a potential product using this profile without coughing up a bunch of money which makes me unhappy.

  45. Javier

    It seems that is not compatible with the 920xt …I don’t understand why.

  46. Felipe

    Hi, thanks for you post! Really helpful!

    I’m a runner and new to bike world (starting training now to try a triathlon in 2021). I have a Fenix 5 and I’d love to see all info in a display rather than on my watch.

    However, it doesn’t make any sense to buy an expensive gadget (such as Edge) only to mirror my watch…

    I’m reading everything artcles/posts that I come up whith, but I couldn’t find any article that mentions a 3rd party device (hopefully, inexpensive) that I can mirror my watch…

    Have you head about any 3rd party device that I can mirron my F5 rather than buying an Edge?

    Thanks a lot

  47. Hector

    I use extended display all the time., i have a FR935 and old Edge 820 that only holds 4-5 hours. by using this, my course is saved on my watch even if the Edge’s battery dies.

    Tip: I find it hard to exit extended display mode. what works for me is to save and exit bike mode on my watch, then it is easier to exit the Extended display mode.

    Wish: if “this” as in feature was available in the Garmin Connect App on your phone (most likely over Bluetooth), it would be killer… I could even have my Edge with some fields and my phone with others!

  48. Hi Ray !

    Please ask Garmin to develop this and to add more data fields once Fenix watch handle more than 4 data fields.
    Also allow map, climb pro and such things…

    Thank you

  49. Alexandre

    I own a 935 and and edge 830. Is-it possible to import gpx files in order to see the elevation left and/or a proclimb screen ? I currently have 2 gpx files, one for the bike part and one for the running part. Thank you for your advice.

  50. Andrew Lee

    Does anyone know if the edge explore supports extended display? I can’t find it listed, but i can’t find it listed on devices that support it either.
    I have all my sports/training needs met by my fenix6, but would like a larger navigation screen than my 820 and don’t want to spend on a 1030plus.

  51. Dave


    I do have a question about the extended display mode but was not able to find the answer.
    I do have the FR945 wich has maps and navigation on it. For training I am thinking to buy me a navigation system for my bike. Can I use the edge 130 with the extended display mode? I don’t need to see the full map but do I see in wich direction I need to turn (turn by turn navigation)? This would be awesome since I like the (aero-)size of the 130.

    Thanks Dave

  52. Ray, do you ever talk to Garmin about this feature? I really love it but like others would like to see a little bit more flexibility. I’d love to be able to fit more than 4 fields down below (Of course my preference is 5…which is 1 less than I can get)

  53. Aravind Immaneni

    I have the FR 745 and the Garmin Edge 830. The extended display works great except it only shows 4 fields on the display where as I have 6 fields on some of my data screens on the 745. Thus far I have not found a way to adjust the display on the 830 to show all 6. Thankfully one of the 6 is lap time so I don’t need that one as it is at the top. If someone has figured out a way to mirror the display exactly please comment. Thanks!

  54. mig

    A great feature and it works (with fenix and Edge130).
    What I am missing is: I paired the fenix with my bike radar – the radar info was not “transmitted” to the edge. I hear the pieps on the fenix, when cars approach, but there is no pieps and no dots on the edge. I think this would be a helpful thing.
    br mig

  55. mig

    It did work very well – thank you!

  56. William Collins

    Hi do I just bought the garmin 945lte and I have my first Ironman as an age grouper in September. Not sure how long my race will take, but thinking 12+ hours. In shorter races I use triathlon mode, how do people coordinate this watch with also a garmin bike cpu to make sure they don’t run out of battery before the race is over?

  57. David

    I just got a 945 LTE. I also have an Edge 520Plus. Since the 945 has better metrics, I thought I would try this out for a workout. But unfortunately the workout screen is not mirrored. So I can’t see the power target. It did prove handy to have the “lap time” on there though.

  58. Eric Malzahn

    This feature is a classic example of adding technology risk to your races. When it works, it’s awesome. When it fails you will find yourself fiddling with Garmin bits during your race. Not fun. Not safe.
    For me it works 90% of the time. The fails come (surprise surprise) in big events. I just did a 1000+ athlete tri in Florida and had this fail. Got to the bike and it said “connecting to Fenix.” I don’t have a Fenix. I have a Forerunner 945. In a Garmin support chat they told me to delete folders to remove the Fenix from the settings. I said “well what’s the root cause?” They said the Edge is seeking Ant+ connections and someone’s Fenix was broadcasting. I asked how to prevent my Edge from seeking new connections but support disconnected the session. They are not understanding that removing the Fenix from settings is not fixing the problem at my NEXT event. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

  59. JC Voodoo Dr

    Can confirm it works on a Descent. Running a Mk2I. I could check on my old MK1 if anyone cares.
    This is exactly what I was looking for. Now I need to go play this before my actual race.

  60. Frank Sobotta

    Hello. I just have tried out external display with my garmin edge 840 / fenix7.
    It worked fine, but without displaying power… which was displayed parallel on my fenix.
    Do you have any suggestions?
    Greetings from Bavaria, Frank

    • Eric Malzahn

      It should show that field. I am displaying 3 power fields from my Forerunner on one screen. Perhaps try less fields on the screen and see if that helps.

      By the way, since my comment above I’ve had better luck with extended display. I believe firmware updates have made it better.

    • Frank Sobotta

      Hello Eric. I have disabled all sensors on my edge, now it works (surprise…).
      Even with 4 data fields… :-)) I will do another test with a full triathlon…
      Greetings from Bavaria, Frank

    • Paul S.

      Sounds to me that you might be using Bluetooth to connect to your sensors. Use ANT+ instead. Not only does it work better, ANT+ sensors don’t care how many head units they’re connected to. There’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to connect a power meter to and Edge and Fenix simultaneously unless you’re using Bluetooth.

    • Frank Sobotta

      Your assumption is wrong, I use ANT+ and as I wrote above, it works when I turn off the sensors on my Edge… :-)