Troubleshooting a Polar watch with built-in GPS (GNSS)

  1. Make sure GPS recording is set on:

    Set GPS recording on in the sport profile settings in the Flow app or web service. Remember to sync the settings to your watch.
    M400/M430: On your watch, go to Settings > Sport Profiles, choose the sport and set GPS recording on.

  2. Check the expiry date for the current A-GPS data file from your watch.

    Go to Settings > General settings > About your product/About your watch > A-GPS exp. date.
    If the data file has expired, sync your Polar device with the Flow web service via FlowSync software or with the Flow app to update A-GPS data.

    For more information on A-GPS (Assisted GPS), see WHAT IS ASSISTED GPS (A-GPS)? HOW DOES IT WORK?

  3. Gps found

    To catch the GPS satellite signals, go outdoors (if possible, away from tall buildings and trees).
    Browse to your preferred sport.
    Keep your watch still with the display facing upwards during the search.
    Keep it in a horizontal position in front of you and away from your chest.
    Keep your arm stationary and raised above the level of your chest during the search.
    Avoid touching the device during the satellite search.
    Stand still and hold the position until your watch has found the satellite signals:

    Grit X Pro, Grit X2 Pro, Grit X, Ignite 2, Ignite 3, Pacer, Pacer Pro, Vantage M2, Vantage V2, Vantage V3: The circle around the GPS icon will turn orange when the minimum amount of satellites (4) needed for the GPS fix are found. You can start your session but for better accuracy wait until the circle turns green.

    Ignite, Vantage M, Vantage V: The circle around the GPS icon will turn green when the GPS is ready.

    M400/M430: The percentage value shown next to the GPS icon indicates when the GPS is ready. When it reaches 100 %, OK is displayed.

Note that as GPS was the first Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS), and is the most widely used system, the term GPS is still commonly used when referring to all types of GNSS. However, the correct term is GNSS, which is an umbrella term that covers all global satellite positioning systems, including GPS.


For best GNSS performance, wear the Polar watch on your wrist with the display facing outwards. Due to the location of the GNSS antenna on the watch, it is not recommended to wear it with the display on the underside of your wrist. When wearing it on the handlebars of a bike, make sure the display is facing up.

The best GNSS signal reception can be reached when training in an open area where there are no obstructions for the satellite signals. Due to the nature of the GNSS signal, for example hills, tall buildings, and trees may block the satellite signal. Rain, fog, and snow may also affect the signal quality. These conditions may result in uneven speed reading during the exercise and cause an uneven speed curve in Polar software even when you have exercised going at a steady pace.

If you notice that the GNSS is routinely off on one leg of a back-and-forth route, try switching wrists for the leg that appears to be off. It is likely that on that leg, the watch is pointing to a direction with fewer satellites available and switching wrists will help solve this problem.

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