Fitness trackers, also called activity trackers, are different from smartwatches. However, most smartwatches are also fitness trackers. Activity trackers are designed to track your health and exercise. So, don’t be surprised to find smartwatches in my list of cheap fitness trackers with GPS.
Fitbit and Garmin activity bands are some of the cheapest fitness trackers with GPS. If that’s what you are looking for, buy Fitbit Charge 5, Fitbit Versa 3, or Garmin Vivomode Sport. There are many others to choose from. Other fitness tracking smartwatches with GPS include Fitbit Sense and Garmin Venu 2 Plus.
These activity trackers will tell you how far you’ve gone and how fast you are going with significant accuracy. Thanks to the precise GPS satellite transmissions. Apart from measuring the distance and route you’ve taken, they will also measure your heart rate, check your blood oxygen levels, and count your steps.
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Best cheap fitness trackers with GPS in 2022
Several brands and models of fitness trackers appeal to different people’s tastes. Some have GPS, and others do not. In addition, some fitness trackers are affordable, and others are pretty expensive.
This article is not about the costly ones. You will get fitness tracking features that active users find helpful at a fair price.
Here are some of the best cheap fitness trackers with GPS:
1. Fitbit Charge 5
Fitbit Charge 5 was launched in August 2021. The fitness tracker is available in three colors: Lunar White/Gold, Black/Graphite, and Steel Blue/Platinum. It is one of the best cheap fitness trackers with an in-built GPS.
The color OLED screen of the Charge 5 is bright and easy to see even in direct sunlight. Some of the fitness metrics you will get in the Fitbit Charge 5 are your heart rate, current pace, average pace, sleep time, and sleep quality. If you buy the Fitbit Charge 5, you will get a free six-month Fitbit membership.
Afterward, the Fitbit Premium Membership would cost $9.99 per month. The membership gives you access to additional features such as sleep and mindfulness tools and a Health Metrics Dashboard.
2. Fitbit Sense
Fitbit Sense also has a built-in GPS. It is an upgrade to the Fitbit Versa. However, if you have used the Fitbit Charge 5, you may notice a difference in GPS connection speed in Fitbit Sense. The GPS sync is pretty fast. The wearable gives you more than five days of battery power from a single charge. It is an essential 24-hour health and fitness tracker.
Fitbit Sense provides enormous features and benefits. For example, you can enable smartphone notifications on the activity tracker, turning it into a smartwatch. Like the Fitbit Charge 5, Fitbit Sense offers an easy-to-read display.
However, the fitness tracker does not support cellular. Instead, it transfers data back and forth using GPS, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi. The GPS may occasionally drop out near tall buildings, trees, or overcast. Nevertheless, you can use Fitbit Sense to track your daily runs and other metrics and map them efficiently for easy analysis.
3. Fitbit Versa 3
Fitbit also added GPS to the Versa 3. Fitbit Versa 3 is an all-around activity tracker for Android Users. This fitness tracker is less expensive than Fitbit Sense because it has fewer sensors and health features. Although designed like a smartwatch, Fitbit Versa 3 works more like a fitness tracker because you get limited productivity apps.
However, the built-in GPS collects a lot of information about you. Fitbit Versa 3 shows where you went, where you are, and your daily steps. It also offers a significant value proposition. Like Fitbit Sense, Versa 3 supports Google Assistant and Alexa. You can set reminders and play songs by issuing voice commands to Versa 3.
Versa 3’s GPS tracks your movements even without carrying your phone along. Besides GPS tracking, Fitbit Versa 3 tracks your overall health and brings notifications and alerts to your wrist. It has decent aesthetic improvements and long battery life.
4. Garmin Forerunner 35
If you are looking for a cheap fitness tracker with GPS, buy Garmin Forerunner 35. It is one of the best cheap fitness trackers from Garmin. Running purists will welcome most features of the Garmin Forerunner 35. However, it is a basic GPS smartwatch with minimal training metrics. Note that the tracker derives its location data from your phone.
Garmin Forerunner 35 fits your wrist like a glove. In other words, it is lightweight and fits snuggly and comfortably. It measures a wide array of activities, some you never even knew existed. But most importantly, the activity tracker uses GPS to give you some key metrics such as your pace, cadence (step count per minute), and distance.
If you use the Garmin forerunner in training mode, the battery will last 13 hours. But in watch mode, the tracker would last up to nine days. Like the Fitbit Sense and Versa 3, Garmin Forerunner syncs to your phone and can deliver notifications to your wrist.
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5. Garmin Venu 2 Plus
Garmin is arguably the best at fitness tracking. With the Garmin Venu 2 Plus, you don’t only get aesthetic improvements but also very accurate GPS measurements. It has a solid connection and determines exact locations fast. Garmin Venu 2 Plus is a smartwatch and a fitness tracker. It has a microphone that you’d use to initiate and receive calls.
If you turn off the GPS, its battery will last up to nine days on one charge. The activity tracker would last around seven days for daily one-hour GPS workouts. But that still depends on the screen time and brightness. The always-on display makes it so enjoyable to use. However, that reduces the battery life to under five days.
Like the Fitbit Charge 5, Garmin Venu 2 Plus comes in three stainless steel colorways: silver, slate, and cream-gold. Its OLED screen display offers a high resolution and sharp and clear presentations. The smartwatch offers several premium features, including stress, skin temperature, and guided yoga workouts.
6. Garmin Vivomove Sport
Garmin Vivomove Sport is a stylish Garmin hybrid with the right mix of form and function. It is a cheap fitness tracker with GPS. It is sleek and beautiful and infuses modern analog design with modern wearable technologies. Unlike Garmin Venu 2 Plus, Vivomove Sport has no microphone. However, it tracks your health and delivers notifications.
It is a pretty versatile smartwatch. Although you cannot make or answer calls through it, you can reject phone calls with a text or use quick replies to incoming texts. It is lightweight and perfect for dressier occasions. What’s more, Garmin Vivomode Sport analyzes your health features and alerts you to push harder or take it easy.
It is important to note that the Garmin Vivomode Sport’s GPS is not in-built. Instead, it pairs with your smartphone’s GPS. If you want to use it for GPS, you have to carry your phone around. Its accuracy matched the Apple Watch Series 7 in several test runs. You can also swim with it since it can sustain up to 5 ATMs of water resistance.
7. TicWatch Pro 3 GPS
TicWatch Pro 3 is Google’s Wear OS: Snapdragon Wear 4100 chip. It provides a newer and faster processor for your fitness and health apps. In fact, you may use the TicWatch Pro 3 as an alternative to the Apple Watch 6 and the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3. It is not only an affordable alternative, but it also tracks your workout routes via GPS.
The fitness tracker has a sporty design and feel. The GPS of the TicWatch Pro 3 Despite increased performance, it does not compromise battery endurance. Depending on your mode, it has a fantastic battery life of between 72 hours and 45 days. It lists 13 outdoor and indoor workout modes, including cycling, trail running, and yoga.
Is GPS important on a fitness tracker?
Are you wondering why GPS is important on a fitness tracker? The most important is that fitness trackers with GPS improve your safety. These wearables make it easy to find your way out of foreign landscapes and remote areas. They also help locate you, your friends, or your loved ones when hiking, biking, or running.
GPS works on your activity tracker whether it’s connected to the internet or not. You do not need to rely on your phone’s GPS. In a state of emergency, fitness trackers with GPS can help with dispatching emergency response services. It broadcasts your whereabouts in real-time, providing accurate location signals.
You can also use fitness trackers to share your health data with a doctor.
GPS is an essential component of mobile devices and wearables. It helps us navigate our way over long distances with significant accuracy and safety. Fitness trackers with GPS are essential for running, walking, swimming, hiking, or cycling. GPS data analyzed by fitness trackers can help you track and improve your exercise and fitness.