Best budget smartwatches – affordable choices from just $20

Top picks that won't break the bank
Best budget smartwatch picks for 2021
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If you're looking for a cheap smartwatch under $200/£200 there's never been more choice. And for the first time there are sub-$100/£100 smartwatches that stack up as excellent smartwatches.

The likes of Amazfit and Xiaomi are making genuinely powerful smartwatches for low prices, and Apple has had to respond by slashing the price of its Apple Watch Series 3.

While top smartwatches like the Apple Watch Series 6 and Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 still command top prices for features like ECG, there's an influx of cheaper devices going big on features and little on price. And in 2021, they're actually offering good experiences that are easy to recommend.

If you've been trawling the nonsense sold on Amazon, check out our guide pulled from devices we've tried and tested.

Update: We first published this article in September 2014. It was updated in May 2021 with a host of new smartwatches including the TicWatch GTH and Xiaomi Mi Watch.

Best cheap smartwatches under $100

Amazfit GTS 2 Mini

Price when reviewed: $99.99

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

Another budget Amazfit – the GTS 2 Mini comes in at $79.99, putting it between the budget Bip U and the fully-fledged GTS2/GTR 2.

So what’s the difference between the Bip U and the GTS 2 Mini? Not as much as you’d think. The build of the GTS 2 Mini is a little more stylish, and you get a superior AMOLED display over the Bip U. The case materials are better and it's smaller. It's only $20 more and we think it's worth that little bit extra.

So the next question is why buy the GTS 2 Mini over the full blown GTS 2? Well, that's a no brainer in our books.

The only real sacrifice over the flagship GTS is music storage, the on-board speaker and voice assistant. And all of those elements didn't wow us on the GTS at all.

The GTS 2 Mini boasts a 40mm case over a 42mm on the full GTS 2, and shrinks the screen down to 1.55-inch. The resolution is also reduced to 306 x 354 pixels, but still punches out at 450 nit. It only weighs 20g, and you still get GPS, SpO2, the BioTracker 2.0 heart rate sensor and 14 days of battery life.

In terms of sports tracking, there are 60 workout profiles built in, and you get the same feedback in the Zepp app – plus support for third party APIs such as Strava.

And the best bit? It's $99.99 compared to $179.99 – and you barely lose any features. We criticized the GTS 2 for being too expensive – but the GTS 2 Mini rights that wrong.

Read our full Amazfit GTS 2 Mini review

Amazfit Bip U Pro

Price when reviewed: $69.99

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

The Bip U and Bip U Pro are available worldwide and is a huge update to the Bip S – at the same price. The screen has been improved most notably, and it boasts a larger 1.42-inch display, up from 1.28-inch on the Bip S.

The resolution has been doubled to 320x302, although the TFT screen tech is no-where near as good as the AMOLED you’ll find on Fitbit, Apple or Samsung rivals.

The Bip U Pro includes GPS, as well as SpO2 tracking, stress monitoring and breathing training, and your heart rate vitals are tracked with the Amazfit BioTracker 2 module. That will also help provide data from over 60 workout profiles.

And the Bip U Pro also supports Alexa on the wrist – if you like that kind of thing.

If you want to save extra cash you can pick up the standard Bip U, which doesn’t include native GPS or Alexa support. But at just $79.99 for the Pro version, why not splash out?

We've reviewed the Amazfit Bip U Pro and were astounded by the value on offer. It really is a strong package that doesn't hold back features from more expensive Amazfits and belies its low price. Yes, there are sacrifices in terms of the build quality and yes, health data isn't quite up to Fitbit/Apple levels. But it's not that far short. A really savvy buy for bargain hunters.

Read our full Amazfit Bip U Pro review.

Huawei Watch Fit

Price when reviewed: $138.99

Huawei Watch Fit

Another smartwatch that's hard to find for US shoppers, the Huawei Watch Fit has plummeted in price and it is now available for $138.99.

The company has since launched the Huawei Watch Fit Elegant with a stainless steel finish, which has led to a big price cut for the original.

The Huawei Watch Fit is a surprisingly nice wearable to live with. We grew to like the tall 1.64 inch, 456 x 280 AMOLED screen, which is sharp and colourful.

There's GPS on board and over 100 sport profiles, and running is well catered for with guided training programs and advanced data such as aerobic training effect, VO2 Max and a recovery time.

It's waterproof to 50m, features swim tracking and there's an SpO2 monitor for blood oxygen monitoring.

There's still the odd software issues while heart rate monitor accuracy is still not great. It's still a great shame Huawei doesn't and probably won't open up its platform to share with other apps.

But at this price it's an excellent smartwatch, that delivers true value.

Read our full Huawei Watch Fit review

TicWatch GTH

Price when reviewed: $79.99

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

TicWatch has doubled down on budget smartwatches, and its GTH goes big on health.

Priced at $79.99, it's not much of a looker with a plastic case and a display set inside a sizeable black frame and bezel. It's a 1.55-inch 360 x 320 LCD panel, so the display is quite basic compared to the AMOLED you’ll find on the Amazfit GTS 2 Mini, though on par with the Bip U Pro.

It has 14 exercise profiles on board, including walking, indoor and outdoor running, indoor and outdoor cycling, jump rope, swimming, rowing, freestyle exercise, mountain climbing, gymnastics, soccer, basketball, and yoga.

But there is no GPS, which means this tracking of outdoor activity lags devices such as the Amazfit Bip U Pro.

The real appeal here is that it can continuously monitor heart rate, stress, body temperature and blood oxygen levels. There's few watches at this price that offer that continuous monitoring.

As a smartwatch, it's pretty basic and the notification support is a bit archaic. The health monitoring features work well, though it didn't win use over for heart rate monitoring and sleep tracking.

It offers a good enough performance, but we'd have liked to see Mobvoi wrap things up in a much nicer look.

Read our full TicWatch GTH review

Realme Watch S

Price: $TBC

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

RealMe’s second budget smartwatch is a much more polished affair than the first (listed below), with a round design and AMOLED display.

Front and centre is a 1.3-inch, 360 x 360 touchscreen AMOLED display, so it really looks the business, even if it’s lacking under the hood.

There’s no GPS, and only boasts an IP68 water resistant rating, which unfortunately means it's not suitable for swimming or showering. That’s slightly unusual, even in the budget smartwatch world.

Despite the lack of GPS, you do get 16 sports profiles, including running, cycling, table tennis, basketball and indoor rowing and cycling.

There’s an optical heart rate sensor that tracks resting heart rate and measure effort levels during workouts. It can also take blood oxygen measurements using the SpO2 sensor.

On the battery front, you've got a 390mAh capacity one that Realme claims can get you up to 15 days before you need to reach for the charger.

It’s not really shaking it with the Amazfit army, at similar prices to the Bip U Pro, and US availability is shady.

Best cheap smartwatches under $200

Huawei Watch GT2e

Price when reviewed: $122.99

Huawei Watch GT2e

While the Huawei Watch GT 2e launched above the $100 price tag, you can find it for below that these days.

The GT 2 e is a sportier version of the GT 2 and features a 1.39-inch AMOLED display that's bright and clear. You get a bunch of sport profiles including swimming (thanks to 5ATM water resistance), cycling and an excellent running experience and decent sleep tracking.

It runs Lite OS rather than Google’s Wear OS, and the pay-off is excellent battery life with 14 days solid use. You can still view notifications from Android and iOS devices, store music (Android only) and Huawei is opening the door to third party apps now too.

Huawei Watch GT2e is actually really good for runners, thanks to loads of metrics, a clear screen, and Firstbeat’s VO2 Max and recovery stats. The only downside is that due to a lack of third party plugs ins, so you can’t boot data out to Strava, and there’s no other apps to use.

It's a better experience pairing it up with an Android phone than an iPhone and is great option for anyone looking for an affordable sporty smartwatch.

Read our Huawei Watch GT2e review

Apple Watch Series 3

Price when reviewed: $199.99

Apple Watch Series 3

When the latest generation of the Apple Watch was announced in September, the older Series 3 was cut into budget smartwatch territory for the first time - now available at just $199.99.

And as we go into Black Friday or the holidays, you may be able to nab it for even less.

However, be aware that this base price tag is for the 38mm, GPS model. If you want the cellular model, or indeed the bigger, 42mm case variation, you'll have to pay slightly more.

So, what else do you get for your money? Well, the Series 3 is able to run on the same watchOS 7 software as the Series 5, and you still get GPS for location tracking, 4G/LTE for cellular support, Apple Pay, swim tracking and heart rate monitoring.

You'll have to put up with the slightly boxier design, and you don't get things like the always-on display or ECG monitoring, but the core features are all still here.

Read our full Apple Watch Series 3 review

Fitbit Versa 2

Price when reviewed: $179.95

Best cheap smartwatches – the pick of our reviews from just $20

With the launch of the Fitbit Versa 3, the Versa 2 seems to be universally on sale at around $149 – and is a great buy at that price.

The smartwatch features top-notch activity and sleep tracking, as you'd expect from Fitbit, with an SpO2 sensor on board, which is used well for sleep tracking and Health Metrics (for Premium users).

As a smartwatch you get notifications, Fitbit Pay and a suite of apps and watch faces.

And the week of battery life certainly isn't to be sniffed at.

It offers 300 x 300 pixel resolution and 1,000 nits in brightness, and, with all these powers combined, the Versa 2 screen is easier to see under sunlight.

There's no GPS, a glaring omission that was rectified on the new Versa 3 - so it's not one for runners. But for general users that want a good eye on their health, it's a smart purchase, if you can bag it at the right price.

Read our full Fitbit Versa 2 review

Amazfit GTR 2

Price when reviewed: $179

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

The GTR 2 like the GTS 2 are the priciest of the Amazfit 'fashion watch' range, which basically means offering the best smartwatch features it has to offer in a classier design.

You're getting the pick of round aluminium and stainless steel case options that host a crisp, 1.39-inch, 454 x 454 AMOLED touchscreen display. That screen can be set to always-on and it's a watch that's fit for swimming even if it doesn't look like a watch made for fitness.

As a smartwatch, it works with Android and iOS devices, giving you notifications, a built-in speaker to answer calls over Bluetooth, an offline voice assistant and there's a built-in music player. Though it doesn't work with third party music streaming services.

On the fitness side it'll track steps, continuously monitor heart rate, track sleep and let you take on the spot blood oxygen measurements. There's built-in GPS and support to fire workout data to app fave Strava.

While anywhere from 14 to 38 days is touted for battery life, putting all of the key features to use will give you around a week of watch time. If the Fitbit Versa or Huawei Watch doesn't take your fancy, the GTR 2 is well worth checking out instead.

Read our full Amazfit GTR 2 review

Xiaomi Mi Watch

Price when reviewed: $TBC

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

It took a bit of time for Xiaomi's Mi Watch to go global, but the feature-packed smartwatch with a huge emphasis on sports tracking was actually worth the wait. It's still not straightforward to grab it in the US, but one you can get hold of now outside of China.

It's a really light watch with a high quality, 1.39-inch, 454 x 454 resolution AMOLED touchscreen held in a 45mm polyamide plastic case. It's a nice, bright display and as a package, it's waterproof up to 50 metres depth.

The Android and iOS-compatible watch uses Xiaomi's own custom OS and handles features like notifications, control watch faces and even finds room for Amazon Alexa support here too.

Along with fitness tracking skills, there's built-in GPS, heart rate monitor, a multitude of workout modes and even finds room for Garmin-owned Firstbeat's algorithms to offer training effect and recovery insights and a similar Battery Body energy monitor feature too.

It maybe slightly lacks the more reliable sports tracking you'll get on Huawei's Watch GT 2e, but there's still plenty to like here about the Mi Watch. It looks good, offers a good mix of features and has the capability of going for weeks.

Read our full Xiaomi Mi Watch review

TicWatch E2

Price when reviewed: $159.99

Ticwatch E2

If you prefer the look of Google's Wear OS to something from Apple or Fitbit, the TicWatch E2 is one of the best options you can pick on a budget.

Mobvoi's smartwatch gives you a balanced, affordable entry into smartwatches. Everything you want is here: a design that'll remind you of an old Swatch, solid GPS performance, waterproofing, apps, customizable watch faces, Google Assistant and more.

A little disappointingly, battery life is only around 24-36 hours, but it's a solid all-rounder that does a great job for the price.

Just be aware that this only comes in a 46mm case, which is also 13mm thick and only available in black; it's by no means the prettiest smartwatch you can buy, but one that should suit those with larger wrists just fine.

Read our full TicWatch E2 review

Best cheap smartwatches under $50

Xiaomi Watch Lite

Price when reviewed: $TBC

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

The Xiaomi Watch Lite is one of the most exciting budget smartwatches on the market, and at just £49.99 it offers excellent value – although availability is still patchy in the US, without an official release or price there.

It boasts a 1.4-inch TFT color display with a 320x320 resolution, and 5ATM water resistance. That puts it on par with the Amazfit Bip U.

It features 11 workout profiles, with running, cycling, swimming with an open water mode, trail running, trekking and cricket tracking. You also get GPS built-in for the accurate tracking of outdoor workouts.

Battery life is also excellent and Xiaomi quotes the GPS battery life as 10 hours, and it will last seven days between charges.

There’s a heart rate monitor on board, but no SpO2, which appears on pretty much every smartwatch these days.

We've spent serious time with the Mi Watch Lite. While it's not the most exciting looking watch, it's well built and offers good screen quality for the price. Core features work well enough and it's an easy watch to get along with.

It's a better option than the Realme Watch, but the Amazfit Bip U Pro will get you a richer array of smarts.

Read our full Xiaomi Mi Watch Lite review

TicWatch GTX

Price when reviewed: $59.99

Best cheap smartwatches from just $20

Mobvoi’s TicWatch GTX was the first in its smartwatch range to dispense with Wear OS – but manages to offer two weeks of battery life and a $59 price tag in return. It's not quite under $50, but we though we'd sneak it in.

It's pretty big, with a 48mm case that will dominate even large wrists. That will please many people, but it's certainly not unisex.

Things do feel a bit more budget when it comes to the screen, though it's not as bad as we expected. You're getting a 1.28-inch, 240 x 240 resolution TFT display, which certainly isn’t the best here. It has IP68 water resistance, which makes swimming dubious.

Instead of Google's Wear OS, we're getting something Mobvoi calls freeRTOS to take care of all things software.

There's an accelerometer to count steps, enable sleep monitoring and track outdoor activity. There's no built-in GPS or connected GPS, which means you shouldn't expect accurate distance tracking, but there is a heart rate monitor.

It’s generally a capable basic activity monitor, but in our time with the device, we couldn’t get the sleep tracking to work.

Overall, it’s a decent looking smartwatch – but the shortcomings around fitness tracking, lack of GPS and the lacklustre display, it’s not the most recommendable smartwatch on our list.

Read our full TicWatch GTX review

Realme Watch

Price when reviewed: $50

Realme Watch

There is now a newer Realme Watch 2 (more on that below), but until it's easier to get that one on our wrists, this is the Realme smartwatch to consider. If you use an Android phone – iOS users need to keep scrolling.

You do have to make sacrifices at this $50 price point, but if you can look beyond some weaknesses, there's good value here.

The 1.4-inch, 320 x 320 touchscreen colour display is good quality but it lacks responsiveness when swiping, and suffers from a big black space around the display that ruins the effect. Plus it's only splash-proof so you can't take it in the shower, and there's no GPS.

However it's a capable fitness tracker, and the sleep monitoring stood up well in our testing – and you get 4 days of battery life. And it even has an SpO2 that lets you spot check blood oxygen.

There are 14 workout modes, and you can piggy-back your phone's GPS if you want. The heart rate monitor stood up well in our tests, and was comparable to a chest strap in steady runs, although lost the plot during HIIT sessions.

The Realme Watch isn't nearly as stylish, complete or functional as most rivals on this list – but if you're trawling the horrible cheap options on Amazon wondering what to choose, you're much better off here.

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

The Realme Watch 2 (above) sticks with a square design and a 1.4-inch TFT 320x320 TFT touchscreen display with a heart rate monitor and an SpO2 monitor included on the budget watch.
here's no details on global pricing just yet, but it has already gone on sale for MYR 229 in Malaysia that when converted, puts it in around the $50 price of the first Realme Watch.

Read our full Realme Watch review.

Amazfit Neo

Price when reviewed: $39.99

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

The Amazfit Neo isn't a full-fat smartwatch like the rest of the watches on this list, but if you like the idea of owning a hybrid watch with real retro styling that packs in a surprising amount of features that work well, we think it's worth taking a look at the Neo.

The 40mm plastic case keeps things light with a 1.2-inch STN black and white display controlled by four physical buttons. That display is split up into sections to show off heart rate data, weather forecasts, and get pinged when a notification lands on your paired phone.

It also tracks steps and sleep and motion sensor-based tracking for running, walking and cycling. That's topped off with up to 28 hours of battery life even with continuous heart rate monitoring and sleep tracking in use.

It's a basic smartwatch experience, but it's one that works surprisingly well. If you like the idea of a simple smartwatch life packaged in to a old school look, don't discount the cheap Amazfit Neo.

Read our full Amazfit Neo review

Wyze Watch

Price when reviewed: $20

Best cheap smartwatches update May 2021

After finally getting to test the insanely cheap Wyze Watch smartwatch, it was cheap and certainly not that cheerful. Your $20 gets you a well built smartwatch with a good display, but plenty of software bugs to deal with.

The Android and iOS-friendly square smartwatch comes in 44mm (tested) and a larger 47mm size options. It packs an aluminium case and hosts a 1.4-inch TFT LCD screen that's vibrant, but is losing a battle with a big bezel above and below it.

It finds room for an optical heart rate monitor, has the ability to measure blood oxygen levels and does offer a single sport tracking mode, although it's motion sensor tracking based as opposed to more accurate GPS-based tracking. It also offers fitness tracker staples like daily step counts and sleep monitoring, but it's definitely the basics.

You can view smartphone notifications though it lacks the Amazon Alexa integration Wyze offered on its Band wearable and limited control over Wyze's own smart home tech. Performance-wise, it's certainly a mixed bag. The promised 9 days of battery life came up short and while the watch software is easy to get around, it's riddled with bugs.

Wyze says it's working one fixing things up – so $20 might be a decent investment. Or you could just stretch to a finished product, such as the Amazfit Bip U.

Read our full Wyze Watch review