Garmin has launched a new compact satellite navigation device for hiking and exploring in remote locations. The inReach Mini 2 can keep tracking your location for up to 30 days, provides weather updates, lets you stay in touch with friends and family, and can send emergency SOS alerts.
It's small enough to slip in a pocket or pack, measuring 5.17cm x 9.90cm x 2.61cm, and weighs only 100g. It has a transflective memory-in-pixel display (like most Garmin running watches)
It includes a course creator so you can plan your route in advance, and its TracBack navigation feature stores your route as you go, and if you suspect that you've taken a wrong turn or just want to head home, it will lead you back the way you came.
Two-way text messaging lets you stay in touch with family and friends even then there's no mobile phone signal, sending messages to other inReach devices, via SMS, or by email. Friends and loved ones can also follow your GPS location in real time through your inReach Mapshare page.
Even with the best planning, emergencies sometimes happen. If you need help while you're outdoors, you can hit the inReach Mini 2's dedicated SOS button, which will send a distress alert to the Garmin International Emergency Response Coordination Center - a fully staffed professional emergency response center, which will co-ordinate with your nearest search and rescue organization to get assistance to you as soon as possible.
If you own a Garmin watch, you can easily link it to the inReach Mini 2 so you can receive alerts and trigger an SOS directly from your wrist. It can also be connected to marine chartplotters, in-vehicle navigators, and aviation systems.
The inReach Mini 2 is on sale now direct from Garmin for $399.99 / £349.99 / AU$599, and to use its communication features, you'll also need an inReach subscription. You have a choice of either a monthly plan that only involves a 30-day commitment and is useful for occasional trips, or an annual plan that costs less per month and means your device is ready to use any time.
Garmin leapt into 2022 with gusto; in early January the company unveiled the Venu 2 Plus (a version of the Venu 2 watch with an added microphone), and just a few weeks later it released both the long-awaited Fenix 7 and the luxury Epix sports watch. It'll be interesting to see what else it unveils this year – both watches and other navigation devices.
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Cat is the editor of TechRadar's sister site Advnture. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better)