Running watch wars: Polar Vantage V and Vantage M get much requested features

Hello, Nightly Recharge

Polar Vantage V Vantage M firmware update
(Image credit: Polar)

The running watch market is a competitive one where all payers are have to provide the most up to date technology to their customers if they want to stay on top of their game. Polar is doing just that by bringing some much requested features to their top running smartwatch range, namely the Vantage M and Vantage M models.

To update the firmware, download the Polar FlowSync app to your computer and connect the watch to said computer using the USB charging cable.

The new features include:

  • Sleep quality insights with Sleep Plus Stages – offers a full insight into your night’s sleep including a breakdown of light, deep and REM sleep
  • Recovery insights with Nightly Recharge – an overnight recovery measurement that shows how well your body recovers from the day’s stresses
  • Serene – guided breathing exercises to help balance body and mind
  • GPS enhancements with added Galileo and QZSS satellite system support

Polar Vantage M Vantage V firmware update

Even more stats are available in the Polar Flow app

(Image credit: Polar)

You might notice that the Polar Ignite fitness smartwatch already had these functions. The Ignite has been released this summer and brought Serene, Nightly Recharge and Sleep Plus Stages to users for an under £200 price tag. We quite liked it too, partially because of the aforementioned functions.

Polar was most likely gauging the user base with the Ignite's new features and fine tuning the them before they went ahead and rolled out these updates on their high-end smartwatches.

The Galileo and QZSS satellite system support and added GPS enhancement is also a much welcomed addition to the update. GPS running watches can't be precise enough and if anything, they are quite infamous for cutting corners – literally. Especially with the recently released Garmin Fenix 6 Pro, a running smartwatch that picks GPS signals up in a matter of seconds and holds firmly onto it, Polar needed to step their game up a bit to keep up with their biggest competition.

In addition to all the new updates, Polar also promised to roll out the 5.0 update that includes Strava Live Segments support for Vantage V, as well as Race Pace and FitSpark for Vantage V and M in December. FitSpark is Polar's training guide, trialled – again – in the Polar Ignite.

Something to look forward to indeed, the already formidable Polar Vantage V and Vantage M will surely be a force to reckon for Garmin, Fitbit, Suunto and the rest of the running smartwatch market once all the updates are in place.

Matt Kollat
Section Editor | Active

Matt Kollat is a journalist and content creator who works for and its magazine counterpart as an Active Editor. His areas of expertise include wearables, drones, fitness equipment, nutrition and outdoor gear. He joined T3 in 2019. His byline appears in several publications, including Techradar and Fit&Well, and more. Matt also collaborated with other content creators (e.g. Garage Gym Reviews) and judged many awards, such as the European Specialist Sports Nutrition Alliance's ESSNawards. When he isn't working out, running or cycling, you'll find him roaming the countryside and trying out new podcasting and content creation equipment.