As part of a comprehensive test of GPS watches, Alex Roddie reviews the Coros APEX 46mm.

The Coros Apex 46mm GPS watch has a slim, lightweight case and a comfortable strap. It’s the most compact watch tested, with an always-on colour display that’s readable in direct sunlight without a backlight, but a bit dim indoors. It has a simple hardware interface: just two buttons, one of which is also a rotating crown. The menus are simple too, with easy-to-understand data screens and helpful features such as altimeter and barometer within easy reach. It can display phone notifications and will do all the fitness tracking and training that you’d expect.

The Coros app works well and integrates with many third-party services. You can import planned routes and export recorded GPX files. This even works with no internet connection. Battery life is superb – at least as good as the manufacturer claims, and good enough for multi-day walking. It will charge rapidly from a power bank.

Thanks to customisable data screens, it’s a pleasure to use on the trail once set up to your liking, and the breadcrumb navigation screen showing your planned route and current track is the clearest of all the watches tested. However, there’s no mapping, and no ability to see an OS grid reference. Accuracy of recorded tracks is superb.

If you don’t need more advanced navigation features, the Coros APEX 46mm is an excellent watch for both walking and running – and competitively priced. Highly recommended.

If you want to compare more GPS watches, check out the rest of Alex’s guide to GPS watches.

We’ve also recently answered a couple of the frequently asked questions when it comes to GPS watches including ‘Do GPS watches need the internet?’ and how to use GPS for hiking navigation.

This review first featured in The Great Outdoors in August 2021.