One of the latest innovations in wearable tech is smartwatches. It takes the functionality of smartphones and drills them down to a small body of a typical wristwatch.
A great smartwatch has features like showing you your phone notifications, keeping track of your daily physical activities, as well as storing media contents like pictures and music. Some smartwatches even feature contactless payments and a heart-rate sensor! These fancy features are widely available in different brands nowadays.
Tech giants like Samsung and Apple have their versions of Wear OS smartwatch types. Those are great options if you don’t mind the hefty price tag that comes with it.
Over the years, different manufacturers joined the smartwatch market, thus enabling the production of the low-cost smartwatch. Today, you don’t need to break the bank to buy a solid smartwatch. A lot of variations and brands are out there and yours for the taking. Even some Chinese smartwatches are available that are high-quality.
Things to consider when buying a budget smartwatch
Platform Compatibility or Operating Systems
The first thing to keep in mind is that some smartwatches are not compatible with certain types of OS. Just like a desktop computer or your smartphone, your smartwatch also runs on a specific operating system.
The most common OS of a budget smartwatch is the Android OS, but some flagships like the Apple Watch only works with an Apple iPhone. There some hybrids out there that work both for iOS and Android devices but are very limited when it comes to the core features.
Are you going to use it for outdoor activities? Office-related tasks? Tracking your health? These are some factors the different smartwatches excels at. There are smartwatches that offer military-grade durability for people who are into the great outdoors. Some have built-in heart-rate monitors for those who want to track their heart rate. Some have fitness-focused features like swim tracking, that can aid you in achieving your fitness goals.
Even if you’re only aiming for functionality, the ability of a great smartwatch to be customized into something that would fit your personality is a great option to have. From vibrant cases to interchangeable silicon traps turned fitness band. There are endless options to choose from for you to achieve that great look.
Customization isn’t just about aesthetics. It extends to customizing the user interface and features of a budget smartwatch. Any great watch can show your notifications like a text message or if you have set the alarm, but an excellent choice to consider, is if it can also be customizeable to alert you on other things like social media activity or fitness goals.
You don’t have to sacrifice the quality of a smartwatch to get a sweet deal. In today’s blog post, we’ve collected and reviewed the best low-cost smartwatch out in the market. We are presenting an affordable alternative.
Our Top Choices for the best value budget smartwatches
Best GPS: Garmin Forerunner 35 Smartwatch
Best Value: Dév S4
Best For Fitness: Samsung Gear Fit2 Pro
Best Waterproof: MyKronoz ZeTime
Best for <100$: AmazfitBip
5. Garmin Forerunner 35
( Image Credit : Amazon )
GPS on a budget? If you’re looking for the best cheapest smartwatches in the GPS category, then look no further. The Garmin Forerunner 35 is a perfect choice.
The Forerunner 35 offers more or less everything you’d want from a GPS smartwatch. It is excellent for people who love tracking their activities. Whether it’s track running, cycling, or walking. As with all fitness wearables, the Forerunner 35 comes with the vital aspect of tracking your stats like steps, calories burned, distance traveled, and what the watch called “intensity minutes.”
This great watch also offers a specific feature that most GPS-enabled tracker doesn’t; You can set a virtual pacer, and track your “pace” when you run. It acts as some sort of speedometer that measures your step count per minute. Pair it with your smartphone while running, and it will directly deliver real-time updates on your wrist. And also syncs the data on the Garmin Connect app if you have it on your phone.
A weird fact, though, is that even if the Garmin Forerunner 35 is a Waterproof Smartwatch, it does not support swim tracking.
Fitness-focused smartwatches come in all sorts of shapes and colors. In the Low-cost smartwatch market, the Forerunner 35 is sleek for the pricepoint.
One of the strong points of the Forerunner 35 is its battery life. An important aspect when you’re using your smartwatch mostly outdoors. The Forerunner 35 can give you a carefree seven days on one full charge. It’s quite impressive given the reasonably large screen it has.
When it comes to incoming notifications, there’s no lag between the Forerunner 35 and your phone. Messages and smart notifications appear on your watch in real-time. One bummer, though, is if you received messages with emojis or graphics, it shows up as a question mark.
Overall the Garmin Forerunner 35 is a great budget watch. Less is more, is how I would describe it. It comes at a budget price with more features than other sports smartwatches. What’s more, is it probably has the best and most accurate GPS tracking I have ever seen at this price point.
4. Dév S4
When you hear that a smartwatch has a built-in camera in it, the first thing that might come into mind is how expensive that is, since most flagships come with that feature. But not the Dév S4. This Low-Cost Smartwatch has all the smart features of every Big-Name smartwatches like the Apple Watch and the Samsung Galaxy smartwatch while being a great option of an affordable alternative.
You know those extra special moments where you just don’t have enough time to find or pull out your phone to capture it? Well, the Dév S4 is one of your most popular models and for a good reason. Underneath the beautiful display is a 5.0 MP HD camera. With a simple twist of the wrist and tap on the screen, You’ll never miss those special moments again.
Supporting the Dév S4 is an MTK6572 CPU, one of the best built and fastest CPU chipsets at this price point.
Smart features include. Heart rate monitor, pedometer, sleep monitoring, and sedentary reminders. Tracking your fitness goals has never been this easy!
One thing I love about the Dév S4 is the ability to customize the watch interface to look like a classy analog watch, and you can choose from hundreds of templates and designs to find one that fits your style.
The Dév S4 is arguably the best bang for your buck when you’re looking for a smartwatch that can compete with the top of the line smartwatches, without burning a hole through your wallet. A good choice for the professionals and the fitness-minded alike.
3. Samsung Gear Fit2
( Image Credit : Amazon)
The first Samsung Gear Fit got most of the smart features right. Back in 2014, on it’s first released, many competitors joined the fray and copied what they did.
Of course, during those days, nothing beats the original. The Samsung Gear Fit, with it’s curved AMOLED display (which by the way was a beauty to behold), and smart features set the standards for fitness bands to come down the line
Now comes a whole new, improved, and aggressive fitness tracker from Samsung, The Samsung Gear fit 2 Pro.
Paying tribute to the original design back in 2014, the Fit 2 Pro comes in a curved AMOLED touchscreen. A better and broader display compared to the original fit 2. Extra space for words, notifications, media player, and a more extensive map for tracking your outdoor activities with the built-in GPS function.
The total height of the screen was reduced compared to the first Fit 2, but the pixel density was given a bump. From 245ppi to 322ppi.
Along with the curved screen, are frosted metal trims, which you can customize in aspects such as color and design. Connected to it to complete the wrap-around are silicon straps, which are also interchangeable. The straps are made with sweat and water-resistant plastic, so no need to worry when doing exercises or doing water activities.
When you flip it over, you’ll notice the built-in heart rate monitor and sensors. The Fit 2 uses what is called “photoplethysmography.” In layman’s terms, it uses a wide array of infrared lights and green LEDs to track your blood flow and translate it into data.
Another great innovation that came with the renewal for the Gear Fit 2 Pro is its charing orientation. The first Gear Fit has charging cable, which you would hate to have to always carry around you incase your smartwatch runs out of juice. With the Gear Fit 2, there is now a docking port for charging.
The Samsung Gear Fit 2 is the most comfortable and stylish fitness band out there, complete with most of the Third-Party Apps you can find on any Great smartwatch. With support from the play store, you can install any additional apps you like. A Solid Smartwatch that focuses on fitness and health monitoring.
2. MyKronoz ZeTime
Crowdfunding has recently been a blast. Lots of kick-starters for great ideas all over the world are being presented on the internet. One success story is that of the MyKronoz ZeTime. It’s a crowdfunding campaign that started back in 2017. The smartwatch was described as the love child of a Swiss-made traditional watch and the technology of Big-name smartwatches.
In simpler terms, the ZeTime was one of the very first “hybrid smartwatches” or basically a smartwatch that has traditional clock hands that cloaks the smart tech underneath. At first glance, you’ll notice the elegance of the craftsmanship that came with this watch. Complementing the overall design is a rotating crown, which enables you to toggle between emails, step counting, and the like. The hands that you see are real and moving; those are not digital designs or templates you see from other smartwatches.
To the untrained eye, the Zetime will be mistaken for an expensive Swiss-made watch. It is safe to say that the look MyKronoz was aiming for was a huge success.
You might be worried that the Zetime will be a lot heavier compared to other Hybrids, fret not. The watch clocks in at around 90g, a bit light considering the metallic finish it has to offer. Compare to another great watch, the Apple watch, which tips the scales at around 120g. You’ll definitely feel it in your wrist, especially with a lot of moving, but rest assured that no arm ache or discomfort will be present.
The ZeTime is also known for its water-resistant quality. It can withstand water of up to 50M. Therefore you can use this device when swimming, showering, splashing, or even dishwashing. One thing to keep in mind though is to not submerged it in saltwater, as it mat damaged the heart rate sensor underneath.
Some other smart notifications are counting your steps and distance, showing you the number of calories you have burnt. Keeping track of sleep patterns, and of course, measures your heartbeat.
We really liked the MyKronoz Zetime. A watch that could completely change the views of skeptics who don’t want to comprise the looks of a traditional watch over a smartwatch. One of the pioneers of the Hybrid market. With innovations and improvements going on, this is the watch that proved; such devices can be both smart and look elegant.
*Note: The my Kronoz Zetime’s price is a bit steep compared to the others on this list, but still is one of the cheapest Hybrid watches that sports a swiss-made look.
- Looking for the cheapest smartwatches? Check out our other review!
1. Amazfit Bip
( Image Credit: toms guide )
Now, onto our recommendation when it comes to the most affordable smartwatch. The Amazfit Bip is maybe the epitome of a budget smartwatch.
If you’re looking for a low-priced, Fitness focused tracker that also has smart notifications and durable battery life, then look no further, the Bip is the best value you will get for under 100$
Coming in at an SRP of 79.99$, this tracker with an Apple watch inspired design brings you some of the most beautiful features that you can get at this price point. It’s comfortable and a pleasure to wear thanks to the soft silicone band that fits stiff and petite wrist alike.
The Bip features a 1.28” display with a resolution of 176x176. The screen is a bit blurry and pixelated, but it’s always on thanks to the lower power consumption.
Weighing in at around 31 grams, that Bip is so lightweight that it almost feels like there’s nothing inside. Don’t get fooled, though. Making up the main body of the Bip is a polycarbonate, matte-plastic build, covered with a 2.5D corning Gorilla Glass touch screen that is scratch resistant. The watch also has an IP68 water-resistant rating. Meaning it can be submerged underwater on up to 5 feet.
One downside though, is you can’t directly pair it with your smartphone. You need to download the MI Fit companion app first on your Android or iOS devices. Once paired the Bip syncs all your data and take control of tracking and record-keeping of your physical activities
On the bright side, The lack of some high-end parts and components compliments the Bips batter life. It’s of the huge selling point of this low-cost smartwatch. The Bip’s 190-mAh lithium-polymer
At a price tag of less than 80$, the Amazfit Bip is one of the best fitness trackers out there that you can buy. It has both a GPS and a heart rate monitor. Back by a great companion app that enables the Bip to work for both iOS and Android users alike.
If you’re looking for smartwatches that can offer more and store media content, we have listed some of the best cheapest smartwatches in our review here. Still, if you’re looking for solely fitness and health features on a companion device, the Amazfit Bip is you’re the best bet.
The Final Verdict
Most of the cheapest smartwatches out there are celebrated in each of their own categories. The big selling point of the high-end ones is that they contain almost all features available on the lower end ones. So if you’re looking for the most affordable ones, always think of first on how and where you will use it, as these are very important when it comes to choosing one.
One thing is for sure, though. Smartwatches have changed how we humans go over our day to day lives. They provide exceptional ease and comfort in assisting us with our daily activities.
We hoped our blog helped you in making a decision. It’s ultimately up to you on which one to get. Always remember analogs are the past, smartwatches are the future!
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