If you’re looking for the best smartwatch but don’t have a whole lot of money to spend on one, don’t fret, there are options out there for you that don’t suck.
Whether you’re looking for something under $100, or you’re willing to stretch things out to around the $150 mark, you can still live a good smartwatch life as good as your Apple Watch and Fitbit Versa-owning friends.
While you might have to make some compromises on aspects, like advanced sports tracking or a luxurious design, you’ll still be able to do things like receive notifications and track your fitness. Of course, watches will be compatible with iOS and Android smartphones, too.
Essential reading: Best budget fitness trackers to buy
If you head over to Amazon, you can pick up a host of smartwatches for as little as $15, but take it from us, those really cheap ones are awful. We know, we’ve played with a bunch of them. So if your wallet can’t stretch to an Watch Series 4 or a Samsung Galaxy Watch, read on for our list of decent cheap smartwatches you can grab without breaking the bank.
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Best cheap smartwatches under $100
Xiaomi spinoff Huami has been making budget smartwatches for a while now, but its latest effort is its most compelling. It looks like the lovechild of a Pebble and an Apple Watch, but it also comes with up to 45 days of battery life (30 days if you cut out some features, like constant heart rate monitoring).
Speaking of features, you’re going to get some solid GPS and heart rate performance. It’s also extremely light and comfortable. We wish it was made out of some better materials and did more, but for the price (and that battery life) it’s tough to beat.
Wareable verdict: Amazfit Bip review
$99.99, amazfit.com | Amazon
So here’s the deal. We’ve kept the Pebble 2 in the list purely because nothing else quite offers the same set of features, specs and price. You get a week-long battery life, Pebble Health and Timeline, an optical heart rate monitor and a monochrome screen.
Read this: How to set up Rebble on your Pebble and keep your smartwatch alive
If you’re picking one up, just be aware that a lot of apps have disappeared, so you’ll be relying on the basic functionality here. Still, for that price it could still be worth it. There’s now also a fan-built project called Rebble that is offering support for Pebble users now that Fitbit has pulled the plug on official support. Be warned, however, that stock is running out – so your chance to get in on the Pebble 2 is coming to an end.
Wareable verdict: Pebble 2 review
$79.99, pebble.com | Amazon
Asus ZenWatch 2
With the ZenWatch 3, Asus decided it was time to go round, but if the whole rectangular or circle argument doesn’t bother you, the ZenWatch 2 is worthy of your attention. Okay, so it’s not challenging the big guns such as the Galaxy Watch or the Apple Watch Series 4 in any respect, but with all the latest Wear OS features and a slim, sleek build, it’s a bargain for the price and well worth considering whether you’re an iPhone or Android phone owner. You just might have to work hard to find it for that sub-$100 price. But you definitely can.
Wareable verdict: Asus ZenWatch 2 review
$79.99, asus.com | Amazon
Best cheap smartwatches under $150
The new king of budget smartwatches, Mobvoi’s Ticwatch E gives you a balanced, affordable entryway into the smartwatch world. Everything you want is here. You’ve got intriguing design that’ll remind you of an old Swatch, you’ve got solid GPS performance, and you’ve got some good customization from Mobvoi that’ll set this watch apart from the rest of the Wear OS cohort.
Wareable verdict: Ticwatch E review
$129.99, mobvoi.com | Amazon
Now that Fitbit’s proper smartwatches are on the scene, its first smartwatch-looking wearable (that Fitbit says isn’t a smartwatch) is the cheapest it has ever been.
While it doesn’t have a fully fledged OS that lets you download apps or watch faces, it does tick off most of those important fitness tracking features. It has a heart rate monitor, can piggyback off your phone’s GPS to map outdoor workouts and has FitStar support to take you through a series of workouts.
As far as smartwatch-like features, you can receive calls, texts, calendar events within the hour, emails, and other push notifications from apps you choose. While it’s no longer sold by Fitbit, you can still pick it up from other retailers at a really reasonable price.
Wareable verdict: Fitbit Blaze review
$159, fitbit.com | Amazon
Samsung Gear S2
With the Galaxy Watch and the Gear Sport on the scene, the Gear S2 is now the cheapest it’s ever been. But don’t be put off by the price or its age, this is still one of the best smartwatches you can get your hands on, and Samsung continues to roll out updates for the old smartwatch.
While it might not boast the same number of apps as the Apple Watch or what’s up for grabs for Wear owners, it does have Tizen OS, which is one of the slickest smartwatch operating systems we’ve used. It’s also got that great rotating bezel for navigation, and battery life is not too shabby either.
It’s not quite below that magic $150 mark, but it’s close enough that we think it’s worth including.
Wareable verdict: Samsung Gear S2 review
$164, samsung.com | Amazon
Yes we’ve snuck in a hybrid, but if you can live with the fact there’s no touchscreen and this is the Connected 2017 model, this is one of the best looking hybrid smartwatches you can get on your wrist. Aside from the gorgeous design, it’ll give you a nudge when you receive notifications, tracking activity including sleep and has Skagen Link, which unlocks the ability to do things like control music on your phone and taking photos. Sleek and smart, it’s definitely one of our faves.
Wareable verdict: Skagen Hagen Connected 2017 review
$125, skagen.com | Amazon
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