What are the best cheap fitness trackers?

As a runner and cyclist, I went down the Garmin rabbit hole and now use the obscenely expensive Garmin Fenix 6. Recently I reviewed the Huawei Watch GT, and I am currently reviewing the Honor Band 5, which sits at the opposite end of the spectrum at just £30.

This made me wonder what are the best options for someone wanting basic fitness tracking at an affordable price.

Like many, I started off with Fitbit, and it was a good introduction to fitness tracking, as I got into running, I eventually moved to a GPS enabled device for accurate tracking. While Fitbit dominated the step tracking market scene for years, dozens of new products have launched at more attractive prices, and in the past few years, they have started to struggle.

Letsfit Fitness ID115U or Letscom – £15 – 20.00

Letsfit Fitness Tracker
  • [Does NOT have heart rate monitor] Slim and...
  • Accurately records your all-day activities like...
  • A great sleep starts a productive day; it trackers...
  • Get call and message notifications on the tracker...

I have reviewed the Letsfit Fitness ID115U, and there are several other options around this price point. They are about as cheap as you can get, but they do work quite well and are very much like the older versions of Fitbit charge.

Honor Band 5 – £29.90

Honor Band 5
  • ☆【Intelligent Assistant】Honor Band 5 has...
  • ☆【Heart Rate Detection】: 24 hours real time...
  • ☆【Huawei TruSleep Tracking】: Automatic...
  • ☆【Swimming Tracker】: can automatically...

Depending on your requirements, I think the Honor is the best affordable option on this list. £30 is just insane value for money for what you are getting, the price is well worth the extra compared to Letsfit.

This has an AMOLED touchscreen display which is easy to use and provides useful phone notifications including the contents of text messages. Step and sleep tracking are accurate, while it doesn’t have GPS natively it can use assisted GPS from your phone to track a run. Following a recent update it will even monitor your blood oxygen levels.

Xiaomi Mi Band 4 – £30.99

Xiaomi Mi Band 4
  • Upgrade 0.95” Color Screen: Bigger screen...
  • Upgrade 135mAh Battery Capacity: With built in...
  • Bluetooth 5.0: Download "Mi Fit", Connect via...
  • 50 Meters Swimming Waterproof Smart Band: 50M...

I have not used the Mi Band 4, but functionally, from what I can tell, it is almost identical to the Honor Band 5. The app will be different, and some people may prefer how  Xiaomi do things, but the Huawei Health app has marginally better reviews on the play store. The Mi Band does not track blood oxygen levels from what I can tell.

Amazfit Bip Smartwatch – £63

Sale
Amazfit Bip Smartwatch
  • Look as Good as You Feel: With a range of colors...
  • Go the Distance: Use the Amazfit Bip for up to 30...
  • Don't Miss a Beat: Optical heart rate monitoring...
  • Be in the Know: The perfect companion to keep you...

This is the cheapest GPS enabled watch on the list and well worth considering for anyone that wants to track activities outside. It has a rated battery life of 45 days which is longer than any other device on the list. Unfortunately, it only supports four sports profiles, and if you want to export your data to any third party service, such as Strava, it is extremely difficult.

Fitbit Inspire HR – £88 (Prices have been as low as £69.99)

Sale
Fitbit Inspire HR
  • All-Day Activity Tracking
  • Sleep Tracking
  • Automatic Exercise Recognition
  • Reminders to Move, Calorie Burn Tracking

While Fitbit doesn’t offer the best value for money, it is not always the cheapest that is the best. Fitbit still has a large user base, and their step count tables and challenges have always been one of the selling points of the Fitbit ecosystem. While a lot of people will buy a tracker and then barely use it, many users, including me, would always try and hit their daily goals or try to walk further to get to the top of the league tables/challenges.

Garmin Forerunner 35 – £99.99

Sale
Garmin Forerunner 35
  • Lightweight and easy-to-use running watch with...
  • Tracks heart rate at the wrist day or night, to...
  • Connected features include smart notifications,...
  • All-day activity tracking counts steps and...

The Amazfit Bip is a cheaper GPS enabled device, but getting your data to Strava or other apps is hard, Garmin will happily sync to Strava, and they make it easy to download your GPX/Fit file for import into other services.

Garmin are the leader in sports tracking devices, they have a large user base, and you can have friends list with various challenge options. The whole Garmin connect service is well designed and makes fitness and health tracking much easier.

The newer Forerunner 45 is out now, but you will have to pay a premium for that.

Overall

My recommendations, depending on your budget and requirements, would be the Honor Band 5 for basic tracking at an incredibly low cost, or the Garmin Forerunner 35 for anyone that want to accurately track outdoor activities.

Last update on 2021-05-14 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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