The best budget fitness trackers UPDATE 2017

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Decent, basic fitness trackers don’t have to leave a hole in your wallet. Whether it’s imports from China or the budget lines of Fitbit and Withings, there’s a fair few options out there: all types of looks, screens and no screens and prices.

These devices are our choices for the best affordable trackers currently on the market, for (about) $70 or less. None are perfect so be sure to read the full reviews so you know exactly what compromise is on offer. Make sure you also take a look at our guide to the best fitness trackers money can buy.

Xiaomi Mi Band 2

best budget fitness tracker

The Xiaomi Mi Band 2 is the latest from the Chinese purveyors of budget tech. In terms of activity monitoring the Mi Band 2 tracks time, steps and heart rate information. And in a Xiaomi first, the Mi Band 2 also offers inactivity alerts and will vibrate for incoming calls and texts. It’s pretty basic on the smart features front, but as a collective, there’s no budget tracker than can beat its spec sheet.

Feature check: Steps, sleep, heart rate, notifications.

$31.99, mi.com | Amazon

Amazfit Arc

The best budget fitness trackers

With a heart rate monitor and strong battery life, the Amazfit Arc is a solid budget offering. However, while it offers a wide range of features, it doesn’t provide the depth of many of its more costly alternatives. Still, a good choice for anyone looking for something that ticks all the basic boxes and won’t be left longing for more analysis.

Feature check: Heart rate, steps, sleep tracking, calories, distance.

$48.99, amazfit.com | Amazon

Misfit Flash

Fitness tracker budget

Like the Misfit Shine, the Flash can track sleep and steps, be worn almost anywhere (including on the wrist), and tell when you’re cycling and swimming. Like its predecessor it comes in a range of colours, has a replaceable watch battery that lasts six months and syncs with the same app. So what’s the difference? The Misfit Flash is chunkier and made of plastic instead of aluminium.

Feature check: Steps, distance, sleep, smart button.

$11.99, misfit.com | Amazon

Misfit Flare

The best budget fitness trackers

If you want an even more affordable Misfit, then the Flare might be for your. Word of warning: The company seems to be phasing out the Flare, as it’s only available on Misfit’s website in the US. Pros: the module is molded onto the band so it won’t fall off, it’s small, weighs just 8.5g and won’t draw attention to itself. Plus it acts as a remote and smart home button once you set it up. Cons: it’s more expensive than the Flash and only has one LED so can’t tell the time.

Feature check: Steps, distance, sleep, smart button.

$49.99, misfit.com

Withings Go

cheap fitness trackers

Tracking steps, distance, calories and sleep, the Withings Go can be clipped to your clothing or worn on the wrist. The basic looking display does have its upsides: the eight-month battery life from a single coin cell battery is highly impressive and means no charging. The Withings Go is water resistant up to 5 ATM (around 50 metres), and that does mean you can take it swimming. It also has the ability to automatically track swimming, but you only get duration and calorie burn data.

Feature check: Steps, sleep, calories, swimming.

$44.95, withings.com | Amazon

Polar Loop 2

The best budget fitness trackers

Polar’s fitness tracker sequel adds smartwatch-style features and beefed up build quality, and has notifications for Android and iOS users. The second generation activity tracker will display smartphone notifications for incoming calls, messages and calendar alerts, as well as measure distance, steps, sleep and calories. It even politely vibrates if you’ve been sitting down too long.

Feature check: Distance, steps, calories, sleep.

$69.95, polar.com | Amazon

Fitbit Zip

Best budget activity band

This is Fitbit’s least capable fitness tracker, but it’s still a useful bit of kit – there’s no sleep tracking and no way to measure elevation, but steps, distance and calories are all covered, and the Zip has wireless syncing capabilities too. Add to that the rock-solid Fitbit software and platform and it’s an appealing choice for anyone who wants to keep things simple on a budget.

Feature check: Steps, distance, calories.

$59.95, fitbit.com | Amazon

Goqii

The best budget fitness trackers

The Goqii is a wearable that’s a little different. Yes, it’s a fitness tracker that can track steps, distance, active time and sleep. It can also do some basic notifications and has WhatsApp support. What sets it apart though is there’s a 3-month subscription that gets you access to a real fitness trainer. They can look at your data from your device and coach you on what you need to do to improve. You also earn Karma points for every 390 steps you take (inspired by Gandhi’s 390km journey), which can be used to donate to various social causes within the companion app.

Feature check: Steps, distance, coaching

$49.99 (3-month plan), goqii.com | Amazon

Archon Touch

The best budget fitness trackers

Only available in the UK for now, the Archon Touch fitness tracker comes at a bargain basement price. You get steps, calories and sleep tracking and a tiny screen which you can summon your stats, and swipe through using your finger. There are some smart features too, with snippets of messages and incoming call details flashed on the screen. It’s not pretty or elegant, but it is usable at a very low price.

Feature check: Steps, distance, calories. Notifications too.

£34.99/$52 | Amazon

(wareable.com, https://goo.gl/yD6CRe)

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