Coros Apex 2 Pro review: Giving Garmin and Apple a run for their money

A solid running watch for all your outdoor adventures

Coros Apex 2 Pro
(Image: © Rob Clymo)

TechRadar Verdict

If long battery life is everything to you, the Coros Apex 2 Pro is one of the best sports watches you can buy. You also get lots of features and functionality, all wrapped up in a titanium alloy bezel that looks and feels hardy enough to take the rough and tumble of gyms and the great outdoors. Performance-wise, the Coros Apex Pro 2 is impressive too, reporting back with accurate stats via the comprehensive supplementary app. The dual-GPS and maps features add value too, especially for folks who expect to be heading far off the beaten track during their workouts. They don’t add sufficient value to make this sports watch any better, mind you.

Pros

  • +

    Outstanding battery life

  • +

    Multi-band GPS

  • +

    Decent screen size

Cons

  • -

    Screen a little hard to read at times

  • -

    Quite expensive

  • -

    Heavier than Apex 2

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Coros Apex 2 Pro: Specifications

Screen: 1.3-inch, 260 x 260 px
Materials: Titanium alloy, Sapphire glass
Storage: 32GB
Battery: 75 hours GPS, 30 days smartwatch
GPS: Multi-band, GNSS
Heart rate: yes
Sleep tracking: yes
Water resistance: 5ATM

Two minute review

The Coros Apex Pro 2 is a hardy sports watch that carries the same impressive crop of features as those found on the brand’s premium Vertix 2 model. The design feels robust thanks to a titanium alloy bezel and Sapphire glass, but practical too, with a diameter that feels just about right on an average-sized wrist. 

The soft and durable velcro strap, similar to other best running watches like the Apple Watch Ultra’s trail band, works to good effect and secures the main body of the watch nicely. In fact, the whole package feels well-suited to prolonged indoor and outdoor workouts, a real triathlete’s watch, although, like most rugged outdoorsy watches, it’s not the most stylish piece in the world, especially with the velcro. In terms of features and functions, the Coros Apex Pro 2 is well-specced, though some of the tools work less impressively than they could do. This is most notable in the case of the maps feature, which is a neat idea but less useful in real life scenarios.

One of the big selling points is the battery life, which Coros has taken to impressive heights. 32GB of storage means there’s lots of capacity for music and GPX files, making it an ideal trail companion in many ways, but smartwatchy enough for people to use on a day-to-day basis. It improves upon the Apex 2 by offering multi-band GNSS support, which isn’t on the non-Pro version of the watch, the preloaded global maps and a slightly larger, slightly higher-def screen at 1.3” and 260 x 260px, as opposed to the base Apex 2’s 1.2” and 240 x 240 px. The much-vaunted battery life is also bigger on the Pro. 

Coros Apex 2 Pro: Price and availability

The Coros Apex Pro 2 is a new addition to the product portfolio, but should be more widely available around now. The price is currently $499 in the US, £499 in the UK and AU$850 in Australia. 

There’s also the Coros Apex 2 to consider if you like what you see but don’t need a model with quite as much battery life, or you simply don’t want to spend as much money, because it costs $399 in the US, £419 in the UK and AU$699 in Australia.

Coros Apex 2 Pro

(Image credit: Rob Clymo)

Coros Apex 2 Pro: Design

  • Titanium alloy bezel
  • Sapphire glass screen
  • Decent resolution

The Coros Apex Pro 2 feels like a quality purchase when you pull it out of the box for the first time, thanks to its titanium alloy bezel giving the sports watch an overall weight of 53 grams. It’s chunky without feeling unwieldy and there’s an impressive Sapphire glass screen, which measures 1.3-inches or 33mm. 

The resolution is 260 x 260 and functions well, even if you stick with the default watch face that’s a little underwhelming to look at, though others can be selected via the Coros app.

This chunky design also means there’s additional room for a great battery, which is one of the best bits about the Coros Apex Pro 2. At the same time, the innards are more capacious, with 32GB of internal storage, which is very respectable. This is most useful if you tend to keep a lot of tunes on your watch, or in the case of the Apex Pro 2, you want to make use of its map and route functionality. 

The velcro-covered strap feels like it’ll stand the text of time and makes the watch easy to get on and off.

  • Design score: 4/5

Coros Apex 2 Pro

(Image credit: Rob Clymo)

Coros Apex 2 Pro: Features

  • Multi-band GPS
  • Impressive supporting app
  • Easy MP3 management

The Coros Apex Pro 2 comes with a small mountain of features, all of which can be found within the screen area using a combination of the three core control buttons. The middle one works essentially like a winder or the Apple Watch's digital crown, and lets you scroll through the icon options show on the bezel. 

As you’d expect, there are multiple sport tracking modes alongside everyday sports watch tools like heart rate monitoring (which works underwater), an electrocardiogram or ECG sensor, a pulse oximeter and skin temperature thermometer. You can control a GoPro or Insta360 camera with the watch, while Altitude mode provides regular blood oxygen and fitness reports, essential for mountaineers and dedicated hikers.  The GPS-aided performance proves impressive enough.

The power of the results produced by these features can be further exploited by using the Coros app, which offers up EvoLab training analysis as well as a very nicely laid-out graphical picture of your activities. 

Trying the sports watch over the course of a few days soon built up a great looking, not to mention a comprehensive array of data, all presented in dazzling colour via the software. It’s actually the better way to view your stats than on the slightly limited circular screen of the watch itself. It’s manta

There’s also an impressive array of map features, which let you use routes as and when you want them although they’re perhaps not as easy to read as they could be. This is especially prevalent if you’re running and only want to make quick glances at the screen. 

The lack of turn-by-turn directions on downloadable maps also falls slightly short of other watches like the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro, which allows you to use Google Maps on the fly. However the accuracy of the system seems good, as are the other tools like the compass, while the management of MP3 music files if you like to listen to tunes while you work is straightforward enough.

  • Features score: 4/5

Coros Apex 2 Pro

(Image credit: Rob Clymo)

Coros Apex 2 Pro: Performance

  • Excellent battery life 
  • Impressive tracking accuracy
  • Plenty of storage

One of the standout performance features of the Coros Apex Pro 2 has to be its excellent battery life, which keeps on going even if you’ve got everything switched on. Alongside that, the core everyday functionality works well enough, with steps, calories, heart rate and sleep stats recorded accurately. Indeed, if you use the Coros Apex Pro 2 as a meat-and-potatoes sports watch it does everything you could want it to. Start to explore the more advanced features though and it’s a little bit more of a mixed bag.

The maps, for example, look useful but their implementation and lack of turn-by-turn directions make them more of a curiosity than a real benefit. This is especially so when you’re on the go, especially on a demanding trail run, and have little chance to scan the screen to get your bearings. 

We’ve already mentioned the Galaxy Watch 5 Pro, but even the Polar Pacer Pro, which is a step down in price, or Vantage V2, offers handy directional arrows to dictate your next turning. Check out the screenshot below, which looks good in theory, but the level of detail in the picture means it’s hard to check at a glance on the run. 

There are other omissions too – there’s no live weather on maps, for example – and things like phone notifications are complex to set up. However, using the watch and checking your performance against historic metrics on the app, whether that’s sleep tracking or runs, is pleasingly satisfying, with well-plotted graphs making sense of your data without the price tag of certain premium subscription services, like Fitbit Premium.  

  • Performance score: 3/5

Coros Apex 2 Pro: Buy it if...

You need a quality sports watch
The Apex 2 Pro bristles with all the must-have features and functions, including route guidance and dual-band GPS. 

Lots of battery life is vital to you.
The Coros Apex 2 Pro just keeps on going, lasting up to 30 days if you use it solely as a smartwatch without GPS turned on. 

You're features-orientated
You’re after a sports watch that comes with a raft of features and functions, many of which works very nicely in tandem with the Coros app.

Coros Apex 2 Pro: Don't buy it if...

You're on a tight budget
You’ll need to pay more to own the Corus Apex Pro 2, which might have better battery life but is much the same as the Apex 2 in terms of features. 

You're a beginner
Basic tracking functionality is all you need, because while the Corus Apex Pro 2 has cool features like dual-band GPS and maps, you may not ever use them. 

You’d like something really svelte
While the Coros Apex Pro 2 does feel well made, its metallic bezel and overall size might feel bulky on some wrists. 

Also consider

Garmin Forerunner 955 Solar

Garmin Forerunner 955 Solar
There are other models that give the Coros Apex 2 Pro a run for its money, with perhaps the Garmin Forerunner 955 being the best-known name. Top-tier tracking and battery-extending solar tech.

Image

Polar Vantage V2
There’s also the Polar Vantage 2 to consider if you’re not convinced by the Coros brand. It's a phenomenal mid-range watch geared primarily towards runners.

Rob Clymo

Rob Clymo has been a tech journalist for more years than he can actually remember, having started out in the wacky world of print magazines before discovering the power of the internet. Since he's been all-digital he has run the Innovation channel during a few years at Microsoft as well as turning out regular news, reviews, features and other content for the likes of TechRadar, TechRadar Pro, Tom's Guide, Fit&Well, Gizmodo, Shortlist, Automotive Interiors World, Automotive Testing Technology International, Future of Transportation and Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology International. In the rare moments he's not working he's usually out and about on one of numerous e-bikes in his collection.