The best budget smartwatches: Affordable fitness tracking and more

Take your fitness routine to the next level with a budget smartwatch.

Best affordable smartwatches

by Seth Walton |
Updated on

Knowing the best smartwatches on the market is a real game changer. Let us explain. Ever feel like you might be living through a period of real change? The days of disregard for one’s own well-being in the pursuit of sensual pleasures seem to be fading before our very eyes. Today it’s all easy-access gym chains, fitness-tracking smartwatches, gym-fluencers with low-carb meal prep solutions and sober curiosity. Health before hangovers, My Protein before Marlboros. You get the gist...

Perhaps because we know we’ve never had it so good, the modern world seems to want the show to go on forever, but what is clear is that tomorrow’s epoch of health and wellness will be propped up by technology. We’re talking new apps, gym clothes, headphones and more – all designed to make your fitness journey as comfortable and efficient as possible.

The true hero of fitness innovation, though, has been the smartwatch - for many of us it's an everyday essential, because the smartwatch does more than act as a fitness tracker.

The best affordable smartwatches:

Fitbit Inspire 2 Smartwatch

Rrp: $79.95

Price: $67.91
Alternative retailers
Walmart$62.20View offer
Lowe's$64.95View offer
Verizon$79.99View offer

This inconspicuous smartwatch from Fitbit epitomises the affordable smartwatch brief: lots of power, low profile, great price. Despite weighing just 31 grams with a 0.72-inch display size, the Inspire 2 can run continuously for 10 days between charges. In that time this smartwatch can monitor and track your heart rate, calories burned and even your sleep, relaying personalised insights to you via the Fitbit app.

Thanks to Inspire 2’s Active Zone Minutes feature, users can monitor which heart rate zone they’re in, allowing them to determine whether they need to work harder to reach their daily goals. It’s a neat party trick, especially for a device under £90. And that's at full price - it's often found cheaper with a deal.

Pros

  • Low profile
  • Highly capable

Cons

  • Small screen

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This smartwatch from Sekonda has been styled in the image of a conventional timepiece, boasting a crisp, stylish and irrefutably clear display packed full of useful information. Regarding its capabilities, this smartwatch could go toe-to-toe with any other model on the market in this price bracket.

Not only can you track and monitor your steps, sleep, heart rate and calories burned but this smartwatch will also allow users to control music, take call and message notifications and change the dial design. It's a smartwatch that should be in a price bracket three tiers above where it currently sits yet still you can pick this Sekonda piece up today for under £80. Bargain.

Pros

  • So many features
  • Great value

Cons

  • Large size is not good for skinny wrists

Garmin Vivofit 4 Smartwatch
Price: $149.00

The Garmin Vivofit 4 is another ultra-low-profile band-style smartwatch. If you want to avoid achy wrists with a smartwatch you can strap it on and then forget about it until you need it, weighing just 22 grams this could be the model for you.

Thanks to the Vivofit 4’s low profile and waterproof design, it can be worn anywhere; given that you could comfortably wear this smartwatch to bed without inconvenience, it would make a great choice as a sleep tracker with 24-hour tracking capabilities. Despite its modest presence, however, this smartwatch can still track your steps, distance and calories burned with a whole year of battery life.

Pros

  • Very light
  • Discreet

Cons

  • Small screen is not for everyone

The Amazfit Bip 3 shares design characteristics with an Apple smartwatch, boasting a 1.69” colour display and more than 50 changeable watch faces for users to choose from. This smartwatch can track your heart rate as well as your blood oxygen with a SpO2 reading. The Bip 3 also allows wearers to see their incoming calls, messages and reminders, serving as a helpful personal smart computer device that they can wear every day. With over 60 sports modes programmed into the device, users can retrieve data based specifically on all their favourite activities, all for under £50.

Pros

  • Great value with a quality colour display

Cons

  • Looks like an Apple watch. It isn’t an Apple watch.

This smartwatch from Reflex Active is bound to your wrist via a stylish tan-brown strap, giving the appearance of a conventional wristwatch only packed with so many more features. This watch can monitor your heart rate while tracking several specific activities including running, walking, cycling and climbing and your sleep. Its seven-day battery life may seem a bit short-lived but given that this watch can take call notifications, and messages and control your music, it’s still perfectly adequate. If you’re looking for a stylish smartwatch on a budget, for under £30 this one would make a great choice.

Pros

  • Great value
  • Stylish strap

Cons

  • Relatively short battery life

What is a smartwatch?

Smartwatches are personal computer devices that serve as time-tellers and a whole lot more. They’re strapped to the wrist like regular watches but exploit smart technology – some of which you might find on your smartphone - to relay a wealth of health informatics back to the wearer, along with other functions depending on the model. Heart rate, daily steps and sleeping patterns can all be tracked by even the most basic smartwatch models.

Are they expensive?

Historically, yes, but no more. Some of today’s top models may cost over £800 but the prices of entry-level smartwatches have steadily been coming down. While they may be limited in capability compared to the more expensive models, most affordable smartwatches are still perfectly adequate fitness gadgets ready to elevate your well-being to the next level. Not sure where to start? We’ve picked a handful of our favourite budget smartwatches to help you decide.

Seth is a Content Writer for WhatsTheBest, specialising in technology and audio. He also writes for Parkers, CAR and MCN.

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