Smartwatches can be defined as minicomputers that can notify you of incoming calls, instant messages, texts, and social media updates, and they are becoming more popular with each day that passes. But wait! If these minicomputers are just an auxiliary for your phone, why should you spend a dime on them? Well, some smartwatches could be pretty smart on their own.
- Some smartwatches are built with their own network, and they do not have to be paired with a smartphone to perform advanced tasks.
- Most smartwatches have built-in sensors like barometers, accelerometers, and heart-rate monitors to help track your physical activity seamlessly.
Putting a smartwatch on your wrist remains a great idea to simplify how you go on with your daily activities, be it at work or home. But, don’t just hit the ‘Buy Now’ button too quickly. Carry out due research and consider a few things before proceeding with the transaction. For instance, you might need to check whether the smartwatch is compatible with your phone before checking out. If you invest in a model incompatible with your smartphone, you’ll either have to spend more cash on another phone or settle for a less interesting version of the watch, meaning you’ll miss out on some of the amazing features.
So, if you’re ready to take the plunge into these hands-free wearables, and don’t want to break the bank while doing it, follow my guide as I take through some of the best smart watches under 200 dollars.
So, without much droning around, let’s get right into it!
Table: The Best Smartwatch Under 200 Dollars
Note: If you use a small screen you may have to scroll right in order to see all the columns.
|(My #1 Pick)|
Mobvoi TicWatch C2
|Fossil Q Jacqueline||$$$|
|Garmin vívomove HR||$$$$|
|Samsung Gear S2||$$|
Things You Need to Know Before Buying the Best Smartwatch Under 200 Dollars
- Display & Notifications: Just like with your phone, smartwatches have different display capabilities. There are those that include a full touchscreen with color and those with a black and white analog screen. The difference determines how well you get your notifications. For instance, some smartwatches only display icons of the latest notifications while others show the entire message of all the notifications. Make sure you look into the display of your smartwatch before you make the purchase decision. Does it support notifications the way you want? Are you okay with getting the notification on your phone and having to go and view it in its full context on the phone? Would you rather have a smartwatch that allows you to access the entire message associated with the alert?
- Battery Life. There are numerous factors that determine how long your smartwatch battery can last. Some of the factors include how frequent the watch is used, the features supported, and how big the internal battery is. This explains why your watch battery may last a day while another one might last over a week. Look into the rated battery life before you pick a smartwatch. Do you need the battery to last for a whole day when you are at work? Check out the battery rating before you pick the ideal one.
- Water Resistance. This is one of the most important features when buying your best smartwatch under 200 dollars. You’ll be wearing your smartwatch almost everywhere you go, and chances are you may forget you have it on your wrist. Some smartwatches are splash proof meaning they can handle a bit of rain but nothing more than that. Others are waterproof and can be submerged in water up to a certain depth. If you love swimming or your job involves regular contact with water, you might want to look into the water resistance ratings of the watch.
- Maintenance Rating. This goes to everything else you intend to use in the long-run and not just watches. A smartwatch is a device that you’ll probably use for a good chunk of time, which means that something is bound to happen. This is why you’ll need one that is very fixable. Consider whether you can fix the watch seamlessly if need be. For instance, can you replace the wristbands or the battery if you want to? How easy is it to get someone who can fix the watch? How available are the spare parts? Are they extra expensive? These are questions you need to ask yourself before settling on the ideal smartwatch. Buying a smartwatch that’s hard to fix means you’ll be buying a new one every now and then which is expensive and frustrating in the long run. You don’t want that. Do you?
- Remote Functionality. There’s a reason why these devices have the word smart before watch. They are not made just to display notifications. Depending on the manufacturer and capabilities, smartwatches can help you track your lost smartphone, check in to a location on Facebook, or play music. Some also have voice recognition, and control features just like smartphones do. Smartwatches are thus very handy and can help you carry on with your daily routines seamlessly. For instance, some watches can aid in health and fitness tracking. So, before you buy one, make sure you are aware of the special functionalities tied to it and whether or not they match your needs and lifestyle.
- Design and Style: Finally, it’s also very important to go for a watch that not only meets your every day needs, but one that also matches your style. You’ll be wearing the watch for extended periods of time, making it a part of your everyday life. Do you find the watch aesthetically appealing to you? What about the look of the watch on your wrist? Do you want everyone to see it? Or would you rather wear a long-sleeved shirt and cover it? These questions are important in making the purchase decision, especially for a device that will always be on your wrist.
So, with the basics out of the way, let’s have a closer looks at the best smartwatches under 200 dollars, starting with my top pick from Mobvoi:
Top Pick for Men: Mobvoi TicWatch C2
The Mobvoi TicWatch C2 is my pick for best smartwatch under 200 dollars. First and foremost, it looks great on the wrist, giving you a sophisticated and unique look. The 42 mm case fits perfectly, and depending on your wrist size you can either go for the 13.mm thick case, or the 12.88 variants, which is available in rose gold. The black and platinum variants have a more masculine look which probably explains their thicker design. The smartwatch comes with the 20mm straps which might be too large for some people- I had to adjust it to the last notch myself. Luckily for you, the C2’s straps are interchangeable which makes the watch customizable.
The watch has two buttons; the top button which has an orange dot at the center is used to access the menu and can be rotated to navigate through the operating system. The bottom button, on the other hand, can be customized to help you access your favorite apps on the watch. The Mobvoi TicWatch C2 is very comfortable on your wrist and lightweight as well. The sleek and simple design makes it easy to pair with almost any outfit.
This watch has 4GB of storage making it ideal for those who wish to store their music offline. Spotify is available on Wear OS, though you can’t save the music for offline play just yet.
The C2 also boasts of a 1.3-inch AMOLED screen, which is quite different from the cliché 1.2-inch screens we are used to on most smartwatches. The watch has a 360 x 360 screen resolution, which makes the content look sharp.
- Impeccable performance and great display: Personally, I have used the Mobvoi TicWatch C2 for a few months now, and I have not run through any performance problem. The platform runs smoothly and scrolling through the menu is fluid, the only time I experienced lag was one time when I loaded apps like the weather app and Google Play.
- Amazing Fitness Features: The C2 comes with a built-in GPS, which makes it possible to track your runs, walks, and cycling sessions without necessarily using your phone. The watch also uses TicHealth and Google Fit to track your workouts and distance.
- Great Battery Life: According to Mobvoi, the C2’s battery can last up to one and a half days, which I found to be relatively true. On a day that I used the watch to track my runs, and get notifications, I managed to get slightly more than a day from the watch. And while the battery life will depend on how you use the watch, I found a day and a half still good, considering most other smartwatches won’t last a day.
|Display||1.3-inch AMOLED display (360×360 resolution, 391 ppi)|
|Sensors||Accelerometer, Gyro, Heart rate, vibration|
|GPS||GPS + GLONASS + Beidou|
|OS Compatible||Android, iOS|
|Battery life||1.5 days|
|Colors||Platinum, Black, and Rose Gold|
Top Pick for Women: Fossil Q Jacqueline
The Fossil Q Jacqueline employs the conventional watch design, with a round face that comes in different colors, and armband to match. The signature stainless steel base model features a gold finish and a simple navy leather strap. This makes the watch simple and elegant to the eye.
Looking at the watch, it’s possible to mistake it with a regular watch. The discreetness it offers makes it different from the overwhelmingly techy-looking smartwatches that everyone is wearing. The face of the watch features your usual two arms to tell the time, and numbers 1-31 on the edge to indicate the date. The watch also has three buttons which can be customized to perform different functions. Replacing the straps is extremely easy because all you need is to unlatch the pins. The underside casing can also be removed to access the battery.
- Customizable Notifications: Unlike other smartwatches that offer detailed information regarding an alert, the Fossil Q Jacqueline uses arms which are pointed to specific hours for different notifications. You’ll, therefore, have to customize your watch to program what notifications will land where. For instance, calls and text messages from your mother can be set to land on the 12 o’clock tick. This can be great, especially when you have important notifications on your priority list. However, it can be sickening when you have multiple notifications programmed to the same tick. The watch emits a short buzz to signal an incoming notification before proceeding to point to the assigned hour. Based on my experience, the best thing is to choose a few important notifications rather than being overwhelmed by a bunch.
- Activity Tracking and Connectivity: While this might not be the best smartwatch under 200 dollars for tracking activities, the Fossil Q Jacqueline can help you track your fitness journey. Program your activity tracking to one of the buttons to see your progress. Also, use the app to check your weekly progress. The watch can also track your sleeping patterns as well. The Fossil Q Jacqueline uses Bluetooth 4.1 LE for connectivity, and so with the app in your smartphone, connecting it to the watch should be a bliss. However, the connectivity ranges at around 10 feet which means you’ll need to stay within the space for the two to remain connected.
- Great Battery life: The battery life of a smartwatch determines how well you enjoy your new device. And while the duration is dependent on the frequency of use, a single CR2025 battery can last up to 6 months. And with most smartwatches lasting for only a day, this a great bonus. Right?
|Display||No LCD Display|
|OS Compatible||Android, iOS|
|Battery life||Up to 6 months|
|Colors||Silver, Luggage, Gold, Rose Gold, Pastel Pink|
Best Smartwatch Under 200 Runner up #1: Garmin vívomove HR
The Vivomove HR blends the physical and digital aspect perfectly. It’s lightweight, classy, and looks more like a regular watch, only that you can easily check your heart rate, calories burnt, and start an activity timer anytime you wish with it. This amazing smartwatch can also estimate your stress levels, get notifications, act as a music remote, and show local weather.
Furthermore, the watch has a steel bezel finish on the upper side and a plastic backside. The 20mm rubber straps are also made in a way that makes extra easy to replace them. The LED display comes to life when you double tap the watch or raise your hand.
- Swim ready, with a 6-day battery: This smartwatch is water resistant up to 50 meters, making it both shower and swim ready. The watch is charged using a simple clip-on dongle on the side, and a full charge will last up to six and a half days. Once the power is depleted, the analog watch elements will still work, but you won’t be able to record and track your fitness.
- Activity Tracking and Monitoring: Vivomove HR is designed to complement your look and help you feel good. It features fitness monitoring tools that are displayed on the sleek LED screen giving you an insight on your fitness levels. Through the wrist heart rate monitor, you can get a VO2 max estimate. It can also estimate your fitness age, helping you to work towards getting a lower figure.
The smartwatch also helps you to track your stress patterns throughout the day, making it possible to identify the activities or situations that trigger different emotions. Thanks to all-day stress tracking, you can be able to manage your stress and work your way through it.
|Display||OLED, 64 x 128 pixels|
|Sensors||Heart rate monitor, barometric altimeter, accelerometer, ambient light sensor|
|Waterproof||Swim ready up to 50m|
|OS Compatible||Android, iOS|
|Battery life||Smartwatch mode: up to 5 days; Watch mode: up to 2 weeks|
|Colors||Black, Rose Gold, Silver, Gold|
Best Smartwatch Under 200 Runner up #2: Ticwatch S Smartwatch
With a circular 1.4-inch OLED display, the TicWatch S sits on a brushed chrome-looking ring inscribed with green dots and numbers to give it a cool sporty feel. The bright green color is very important in changing what would have been a dull look and turning it into a face that suits your personal style. The watch also has a flexible TPU (a composite of hard plastic and silicone) strap which blends well with the color and dimensions of the watch.
The strap is fastened using a metal clasp, with two additional loops giving the required allowance. On the side is a protruding plastic that rims around the watch’s single button. The side button is the only way to interact with the watch beyond the touch display. The plastic element, on the other hand, is non-functional and is only meant to complement the sleek look.
- Display: The screen is a captive multi-touch display which is a real beauty to look at. Made from a scratch resistant glass this masterpiece has a resolution of 400 x 400. You can easily adjust the font size, brightness, and watch face, on Google Play Store. There’s also the option of having the watch always on display. This means you don’t have to wake up the watch fully to watch up essential information such as the time and date, but you can be sure your battery life will be affected.
- Health and Fitness: The TicWatch S smartwatch is the ideal health and fitness partner. With the TicHealth app, you can access your daily progress. The data is broken down into steps, distance, calories burned, active hours, and exercise minutes. The Fitness app on the phone allows you to start a workout, with options including cycling, outdoor walk, outdoor run, indoor run, and freestyle modes. There are numerous health and fitness apps on Google Play Store; you’re literally spoilt for choice. Personally, Step Ranking is my favorite TicWatch app.
- Battery Life: The battery life for the TicWatch S is par the course. Even after stretching it, I can get two days. And while it depends on how you are using the watch, you should get at least a day from this gem.
|Display||OLED, 400 x 400 resolution|
|Sensors||Heart-rate monitor, Proximity sensor, Accelerometer, Gyroscope, e-Compass|
|Waterproof||Water and dust resistant (IP67)|
|OS Compatible||Android, iOS|
|Battery life||48 hours|
|Colors||Knight (black), Glacier (white), and Aurora (green)|
Best Smartwatch Under 200 Runner up #3: Fitbit Versa
Last on my best smartwatch under 200 list is this 39 mm Versa smartwatch that resembles a flush Apple watch. And with a case depth of 11.2 mm, this smartwatch is surrounded by a thick aluminum frame that houses a GPS antenna. This watch doesn’t have GPS though; it connects to your phone’s GPS. The watch is stylish and blends perfectly with different outfits. The straps are designed in a way that they can be customized based on your preference.
Furthermore, there are numerous apps and clock faces (550+) to choose from, most designed by Fitbit and others by third parties. With this smartwatch, you can scan your Starbucks card to pay for coffee, regulate your Philips Hue lighting, store a United Airlines boarding pass, among other things. You can easily access your daily stats by swiping up the watch face. Some of the stats include steps walked, workout metrics, and heart rate. The Today view also offers tips on heart health, nutrition, and sleep.
Android phone users can enjoy the ‘Quick Replies’ feature which makes the smartwatch more actionable. Once you receive a message on your phone, you can use your watch to send an automatic response you set. Fitbit offers, ‘Yes,’ ‘No,’ and ‘Sounds good,’ but you can customize the phrases.
- Activity Tracking and Music: Fitbit sacrificed the GPS to slim down and remove the heavy aluminum frame in the Ionic. This means you have to take your phone to running, or biking to get the accurate data on pace, mileage, and splits. However, if you run, or bike the same route, the watch’s algorithms should be able to log your workouts independently
- Storing music: on the watch is pretty easy if you have a Pandora or Deezer account. Both accounts will cost you $9.99 a month, and you can take advantage of Deezer’s free three-month trial to build up your playlist. You don’t need to have the Deezer app installed either; just sign up to your account in the Fitbit app under your device’s Media settings, and add music. You can also load MP3s on the watch using the Fitbit desktop client.
- Battery Life: Even with the workouts monitoring, music playback, and sleep tracking, I can squeeze at least two days of use from the Versa. And while this is not the best battery life there is, I find it reasonable for a budget smartwatch.
|Display||LCD, 348 x 250 pixels|
|Sensors||Heart-rate monitor, Accelerometer, Gyroscope, vibration, light|
|Waterproof||Water Resistant up to 50m|
|OS Compatible||Android, iOS, Windows|
|Battery life||2 days|
|Colors||Black, silver, and Rose gold|
Bonus: Best Smartwatch Under 150 Dollar: Samsung Gear S2 Smartwatch
Samsung has covered many bases with both designs; the Standard Gear S2 and the Upscale Gear S2 Classic. The Standard version features rubber straps, and an appealing athletic look, while the Classic employs a traditional design complimented with a leather strap. The Classic model is also slightly smaller (39.9 x 43.6 x 11.4 mm) compared to the Standard version (42.3 x 49.8 x 11.4 mm). Generally though, I’d say the size of the smartwatch is great, and that shouldn’t be an issue.
- Display: Far from the breathtaking rotating watch face, the Gear S2 has a remarkable 1.2-inch Super AMOLED screen. This bright and sharp screen increases the watch’s classic charm. And at 360 x 360 pixels, the screen boasts of a remarkable pixel density of 302ppi. This means you can play around with the font size and customize the screen so you can receive more messages and notifications on one screen. Amazing. Right?
- Health and Fitness Monitoring: The Gear S2 is quite resourceful when it comes to health and fitness tracking. The watch can track your activity patterns and give you data on the amount of time you’ve been active or inactive. Other alerts include step target achieved and healthy pace. And though the watch lacks GPS, it can auto track your walks and runs, with estimates of calories burned.
- The heart rate monitor: The underside of the watch is very useful as well. It can be used to record on the spot reading or take up your pulse at intervals with two settings; moderate or frequent. You can also tag your BPM readings as either ‘resting,’ ‘before exercise,’ or ‘after exercise,’ to help you keep an eye on your BPM.
- Battery Life and Charging: Although the battery life is dependent on how you use it, the 250mAh battery will last you at least 3 days. Swipe down from the watch face to check the battery level, and make use of the superb Power Saving mode when you need. It disables everything apart from alerts, calls, and messages, switching the display to a grayscale screen.
|Display||AMOLED, 360 x 360 pixels (302ppi)|
|Sensors||Accelerometer, Gyro, HRM, Barometer,
|Waterproof||Water Resistant IP68|
|Colors||Black, Rose gold, Platinum, White|
The Best Smartwatch Under 200 Dollars: Conclusions and Final Words
If you have followed my guide well, choosing the best smartwatch under 200 dollars should be easy. Look into the features I’ve detailed for you and make the right choice.
PS:, let me say there are plenty of things to consider when you’re buying your first watch. I recommend that you look around my site to learn about some frequent mistakes to avoid when buying your timepiece or the best smartwatch under 200 dollars. If you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to send me an e-mail.
Who is Tim?
Hi I am Tim, a watch collector and blogger from Kansas City. In 2015 I launched The Watch Snob after I looked around everywhere for a good watch site, but I couldn’t find anything that really excited me.
On The Watch Snob you will find industry news, watch reviews and everything in between. You can connect with me on Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter with the buttons on the right side of this page.