• It’s pretty expensive
• Touchscreen works really well
• More intuitive interface than previous
• Easy-to-read screen
• Sleek, modern design
• Good battery life
GPS units have become quite popular
over the years, especially for backcountry
riding and bikepacking. Garmin has been at
the forefront of GPS technology and offers
several different options for riders, depend-
ing on what their goals are. The 1030 is
Garmin’s newest unit, with more maps,
better tracking and a touchscreen. Some of
our test riders are dedicated Garmin users
and were eager to put this one to the test
to see how it compared to other models.
Tech info: The Garmin 1030 is
loaded with features, including heart rate,
cadence, power and much more. The
computer has a 3.5-inch touchscreen (with
adjustable sensitivity) with a color display.
The unit has several built-in sensors,
including a barometric altimeter, accelerometer, GPS and GLONASS tracking
options. During setup, riders can choose
to run one or both tracking features for
Garmin did some work on the rechargeable lithium-ion battery, increasing the
run-time to about 20 hours with a relatively
quick charge time. On the underside of the
unit is a sealed slot for a micro SD memory
card so riders can upload their own routes.
The 1030 comes with 100 different courses programmed and tons of different maps.
Like previous Edge computers, the
1030 has smart
notifications, including receiving text
messages and phone-call alerts when
paired via Bluetooth to the rider’s phone.
There are two versions of the 1030 riders
can purchase—a bundle or non-bundle
model. The bundle includes a heart-rate
strap and speed/cadence sensor, while the
non-bundle version is just the head unit
and a few handlebar mounts. Retail price
on the non-bundle unit we tested is $600.
On the trail: Out of the box, the 1030
is larger than other Garmin units we have
used but is still sleek and modern. The display screen is seriously impressive, resembling an iPad instead of a cycling computer.
Programming the device with our rider settings was simple, and setting up the data
screens was more intuitive than with other
Edge products we have used in the past.
Some riders will be slightly overwhelmed
by the sheer number of options, but if you
know exactly what you want, setup will be
We opted to use the GPS and GLONASS
tracking to test the battery life and accura-
cy of the 1030. To our surprise, using both
options didn’t have a huge impact on bat-
tery life. The GPS navigation was accurate
and even provided the
names of some of
the local bike paths we commuted on.
Our experience with touchscreen cycling
devices has been hit-and-miss, but the 1030
has the best touchscreen we have used to
date. Increasing the sensitivity a bit made
a big difference. We mainly used the power
and heart-rate sensors, which didn’t drain
the battery prematurely, and delivered
consistent and quick numbers.
The 1030 may be a bit expensive for some
riders, but Garmin produces some of the
best GPS devices for bikes. If you want to
know where you’re going and utilize endless
data options, the 1030 is a great option. ❏
GARMIN EDGE 1030 GPS
COMPUTER No reason to get lost anymore