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What’s the Best Smartwatch On a Budget? 8 Watches Under $200

by th3exploited

What to look into before buying the best smartwatch on a budget

Before spending money on a smartwatch, make sure it offers the following basic features:

Health and fitness metrics πŸ‘Ÿ

In theory, all smartwatches track health and fitness metrics, but it’s worth checking it twice before buying one. Plus, you might notice that a particular smartwatch tracks more metrics than others, so pay attention to what they really offer.

Most smartwatches come with metrics like heart rate, calorie counter, step counter, blood oxygen score (SpO2), stress levels, and breathing score.

Workout modes 🎽

Workout modes are built-in programs that your smartwatch tracks more accurately because it takes into consideration characteristics that are specific to a given sport or training technique.

Through workout modes, you can measure how you performed during a particular training session, rather than see the all-day general stats.

NFC πŸ“±

A practical smartwatch comes with the NFC function that allows you to pay at any point of sale by just approaching the watch to the payment terminal.

GPS πŸ›°οΈ

Moreover, you can use your smartwatch to navigate anywhere you go. No matter if you just want to go to an address or record a running/hiking route, activate the GPS and you’re set.

Sleep monitoring πŸŒ™

Smartwatches should come with a sleep monitoring feature, through which you can learn more about your sleep patterns. Based on the data you receive, you are able to improve and get a better sleep score in the long term.

The best smartwatch on a budget: top options under $200

Let’s explore the best options under $200 available on the market (in no particular order):

Samsung Galaxy Watch Active

Specs πŸ—’οΈ

  • Screen size: 28 mm
  • Workout modes: 30+ (6 auto-tracked)
  • Battery life: 45 hours
  • Sleep tracking: βœ”οΈ
  • SpO2: ❌
  • GPS: βœ”οΈ
  • NFC: βœ”οΈ

This one is the first version of the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active series. It ticks most of the basic features you might be expecting to find in a smartwatch.

It tracks your heart rate, stress levels, and calories. When stress is high, you can use the watch’s breathing techniques and mindfulness sessions to calm down. This watch comes with over 30 workout programs, but only 6 can be automatically detected. The rest of them need to be recorded manually.

You can connect the watch to both Android and iOS through the Samsung Health app. It also provides integrations with Spotify (to play music directly from the watch), MyFitnessPal, Strava, MapMyRun, and more.

Design-wise, it comes in four styles: silver, back, rose gold, and green. You can choose out of the many customizable watch faces to give your experience a personal touch.

πŸ’³ Pricing: $163

Apple Watch Series 3

Best smartwatch on a budget: Apple Watch Series 3

Specs πŸ—’οΈ

  • Screen size: 38 or 42 mm
  • Workout programs: 17 (+ custom)
  • Battery life: 18 hours
  • Sleep tracking: βœ”οΈ
  • SpO2: ❌
  • GPS: βœ”οΈ
  • NFC: βœ”οΈ

Apple Watch Series 3 is similar to Samsung Galaxy in features, just that it works only on Apple devices. For instance, while the Samsung is compatible with Spotify, Apple Watch gives you access to Apple Music instead.

Just like Samsung, Apple Watch tracks most health metrics, except for blood oxygen saturation. It comes with Siri integration, so you can just use your voice to give commands. If paying with the smartwatch is an important thing to you, you will be happy to learn that Apple Watch allows you to use Apple Pay.

This smartwatch provides emergency calls, integration with a lot of apps, menstrual cycle tracking, a built-in altimeter (for hiking or cycling), and over 17 workout programs. Aside from the 17 default programs, you can add more by clicking β€œOther.”

Apple Watch Series 3 comes in two colors: silver and black.

πŸ’³ Pricing: $199

You may also be interested in:

Smartwatch Fitbit Versa 3

Specs πŸ—’οΈ

  • Screen size: 40 mm
  • Workout modes: 20
  • Battery life: 12 hours
  • Sleep tracking: βœ”οΈ
  • SpO2: βœ”οΈ
  • GPS: βœ”οΈ
  • NFC: βœ”οΈ

The Fitbit smartwatch is one of the most feature-rich smartwatches on this list. It comes with everything you might need, plus some more quirky things like SpO2 tracking and others. Actually, it comes with a few things that are not common among the other smartwatches on this list.

For instance, it measures the skin temperature variation, detects snoring/noise during sleep, tracks breathing during sleep, provides voice assistance via Alexa integration, logs the menstrual cycles, and checks the heart rate variability (the variation of time between each heartbeat).

Moreover, Fitbit Versa has a feature named Daily Readiness Score, which lets you know if your body is ready for a workout or needs recovery. Through the Cardio Fitness Level feature, you learn what your current fitness level is and what you need to do to improve it. The built-in altimeter lets you know the elevation you manage to reach during a hike or climbing stairs.

You can customize the smartwatch via the hundreds of clock faces and see all your stats via the Fitbit app.

Fitbit Versa 3 comes in five colors: midnight, pink, black, olive, and thistle.

πŸ’³ Pricing: $180

Amazfit GTR 3

Specs πŸ—’οΈ

  • Screen size: 35 mm
  • Workout programs: 150 (8 auto-tracked)
  • Battery life: 35 hours
  • Sleep tracking: βœ”οΈ
  • SpO2: βœ”οΈ
  • GPS: βœ”οΈ
  • NFC: ❌

Amazfit is another smartwatch that brings you most of the basic features at a reasonable price. From heart rate to SpO2, stress levels, sleep monitoring, and menstrual cycle – it’s all there. It doesn’t allow NFC payments, though.

You can customize the main screen by choosing from 100 watch faces – both static and animated. It also comes with Alexa integration, so you can activate its functions by voice.

Some of the cool features that the Amazfit smartwatch brings are PAI (that tells you what your weekly fitness score is), Peakbeats (that gives in-depth data such as maximum oxygen uptake, recovery time, and training effect), and Virtual Pacer (that puts your previous recorded runs versus your current performance to help you improve your running data).

The watch comes in two colors: grey and black. It also has a slimmer and more elegant version – Amazfit GTS 3.

πŸ’³ Pricing: $180

Garmin Forerunner 55

Specs πŸ—’οΈ

  • Screen size: 26 mm
  • Workout programs: custom
  • Battery life: 20 hours
  • Sleep tracking: βœ”οΈ
  • SpO2: ❌
  • GPS: βœ”οΈ
  • NFC: ❌

Garmin Forerunner 55 is a smartwatch that plays by slightly different rules. It comes with both features that you will find in its counterparts, as well as features that offer unique functionality.

First of all, Garmin Forerunner focuses on running, which is why it does not provide default workout programs. Instead, it lets the users create their own custom programs based on goals and various metrics. Apart from that, you get daily workout suggestions tailored to your fitness level and training history. Through Garmin Connect, you can manage your workouts and select training plans that have built-in workouts.

Since most of the features are dedicated to running, you will also find options like finish time, GPS-based page guidance for a given route, built-in track run activity (for speed races like swimming or treadmill), recovery time estimate, and more.

Aside from running, Garmin lets you switch to other activities like swimming, yoga, HIIT, pilates, and breathwork.

This smartwatch comes in three colors: white, black, and aqua.

πŸ’³ Pricing: $199.99

TicWatch E3

Specs πŸ—’οΈ

  • Screen size: 33 mm
  • Workout programs: 21 (+ more custom)
  • Battery life: 72 hours
  • Sleep tracking: βœ”οΈ
  • SpO2: βœ”οΈ
  • GPS: βœ”οΈ
  • NFC: βœ”οΈ

TicWatch E3 is a product from Google that checks all the must-have features to qualify as a complete smartwatch. Expect to get all the necessary data you need during an activity, such as heart rate, oxygen levels, pace, calories, steps, stress, and more.

Apart from tracking your health metrics, TicWatch E3 lets you pay contactless through Google Pay and go hands-free by using voice commands via Google Assistant.

Another thing that stands out about this smartwatch is the 30-minute daily HIIT program. Just tap on HIIT and start the workout. Moreover, you can access a lot of apps from Google Play right from your wrist – such as Strava, Google Fit, Spotify, Lifesum, Telegram, and more.

πŸ’³ Pricing: $199.99

Xiaomi Watch S1 Active

Best smartwatch on a budget: Xiaomi Watch S1 Active

Specs πŸ—’οΈ

  • Screen size: 36 mm
  • Workout programs: 19 (+ 100 extended)
  • Battery life: 30 hours
  • Sleep tracking: βœ”οΈ
  • SpO2: βœ”οΈ
  • GPS: βœ”οΈ
  • NFC: βœ”οΈ

Xiaomi Watch S1 Active delivers all the essential features you might expect from a smartwatch. Apart from checking all the health and fitness tracking elements, it also provides over 100 workout modes.

This smartwatch has a built-in microphone and speaker and gives you rapid access to the emergency button. It also allows contactless payments via its NFC feature, but these will work only with Mastercard payment terminals.

Through its Alexa integration, you can activate commands by voice. If you want to customize the main screen, you can choose from 200+ watch faces with various themes such as tech, sports, cartoons, and more.

Xiaomi smartwatch comes in three colors: white, black, and blue.

πŸ’³ Pricing: $185

Huawei Watch GT2

Specs πŸ—’οΈ

  • Screen size: 35 mm
  • Workout programs: 15 (+ 85 custom)
  • Battery life: 30 hours
  • Sleep tracking: βœ”οΈ
  • SpO2: βœ”οΈ
  • GPS: βœ”οΈ
  • NFC: ❌

Huawei GT2 is a smartwatch that provides most of the needed features at a reasonable price. While it does track health metrics, fitness levels, sleep, and menstrual cycles, it falls short when it comes to NFC payments.

The smartwatch comes with 15 default workout modes, but you can extend the number by adding your own custom workouts. It can also automatically detect six workout types. Moreover, it supports Bluetooth calling and TruRelax pressure monitoring.

When it comes to professional data, it delivers stats about maximum oxygen uptake, recovery time, training intensity, ten preinstalled running courses, training stress score, and more.

It provides many customizable watch faces and comes in several colors: black, white, orange, brown, red, grey, gold, and beige.

πŸ’³ Pricing: $170

Which best smartwatch on a budget to choose?

With the big picture in mind related to what each smartwatch has to offer, here’s our brief conclusion:

πŸ’΅ The overall best smartwatch on a budget is Smartwatch Fitbit Versa 3. It is the best balance between price and features, especially if you’re getting a smartwatch to track your health and fitness.

βš™οΈ If you want to tick all the must-have features that a smartwatch should normally provide, choose between TicWatch E3 and Xiaomi Watch S1 Active.

πŸƒπŸ» Those of you whose favorite workout is running should take a closer look at Garmin Forerunner 55.

πŸ–₯️ If you own many Apple products and want to avoid any compatibility issues, check Apple Watch Series 3 (or whatever other edition of the watch is on sale when you’re reading this).

πŸ₯ If you are looking for more in-depth info about your training sessions, Amazfit GTR 3 and Huawei Watch GT2 might be the optimal products for you.

In your opinion, which is the best smartwatch on a budget and why? Are there any great smartwatches that we’ve missed? Let us know in the comments below.