Mobvoi Home Walking Treadmill review: a mom's secret to fitness success

Mobvoi's Home Walking Treadmill offers affordable and enjoyable exercise without the clutter

Mobvoi Home Walking Treadmill review
(Image credit: Lucy Miller)
T3 Verdict

The Mobvoi Home Walking Treadmill is an utter steal if you’re looking for a reliable under-desk treadmill without spending a fortune. It’s super-compact, comfortable underfoot and easy-to-drive via the remote control - and if you want to you can connect to your smartwatch or the Mobvoi app too.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Easy to set up

  • +

    Remote controlled

  • +

    Great value for money

  • +

    Quiet as a mouse

  • +

    Space-saving design

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Narrow belt

  • -

    No step count

  • -

    Not sure how to operate it should the remote get lost

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I’ve been looking for something that fits into my life as a mum of two for a while now. Picture this: the kids are in bed, and my legs are itching to move and let off some steam from the day, but running around the block isn’t an option—and neither is a home treadmill.

I like a decluttered home, and with the Mobvoi Home Treadmill, I get the best of both worlds: steps when I can’t get out of the house and a treadmill that packs away neatly behind the sofa when not in use. It’s quiet enough not to wake them at bedtime—and cheap enough not to think twice about the investment.

Is the under-desk treadmill still worth the investment, though? Is it cheap and, therefore, flimsy and unreliable? And of all the under-desk treadmills, is the Mobvoi comfortable and sturdy for everyday use? Read on to find out how it might fit into your life (and home).

Mobvoi Home Walking Treadmill review

Price and availability

The Mobvoi Walking Treadmill was launched in Spring 2024 and is available to buy directly from Mobvoi for an RRP of $264/ £210/ AU$ 273. At the time of writing, it was on sale for $234/ £180/ AU$ 274.

Setup

When a big box arrives at my door, it’s easy for me to feel pretty overwhelmed (for reference, the box the treadmill comes in weighs 15kg (33lb); My house isn’t massive. And my DIY skills are quite frankly a shambles. 

The first question is, is the Mobvoi Walking Treadmill going to talk over my living room? And secondly, is it going to be a headache to put together? I’m presently surprised.

Once unwrapped, the treadmill is pretty much ready to go. I simply screw in the adjustable feet, plug it in and flick the switch to kick-start it into walking mode. It has wheels at the front to swiftly position the treadmill into place (think evenings in front of the TV and daytime under my desk) and a palm-sized remote - with batteries to control the speed. It couldn’t be easier. 

Design and build quality

The Mobvoi Walking Treadmill is rather cute and perfectly unstated. It would fit under a standing desk or tucked under or behind my sofa. 

It has no handrails or crossbar, only a belt stretched around the motor unit. At just 12.7cm high (floor-to-deck height and the equivalent to a phone standing up), the unit is fairly compact, especially compared to full-sized treadmills and their imposing measurements: the Mobvoi Home Walking Treadmill SE, for example, measures 48.8" x 27" x 44.6" (L x W x H) and despite being able to fold up, will still take up an entire corner in a room.

Despite the modest dimensions, the Mobvoi Walking Treadmill has a reasonably long walking area (48.7" x 20"), which is more than long enough to accommodate even taller users - but at 20.5" wide, it felt pretty narrow even for my size 8 frame. A few times I struggled to stay in the middle and felt like I’d catch the side of my foot - I didn’t but you do need to stay focused. It does however cater for a maximum user weight of 120kg and the belt ran smoothly (up to 6km/h), without any jerking motions.

Features

The Mobvoi Walking Treadmill is a very basic entry-level walking treadmill. It's not featureless, but if you're after a running machine that can produce high inclines, speeds and multiple workout programmes, this isn’t for you.

This 2.25HP motor is capable of turning the belt at a smooth speed of 3.7 mph (6kph), which is more than fast enough for walking and its silent operation at less than 60dB thanks to its noise reduction rubber creates an immersive ambience, allowing you to focus on each step without worrying too much about the neighbours.

The five-ply running belt, featuring a high-strength support layer and a shock absorption layer is comfortable enough to walk on, even in socks - and the PVC water-resistant, anti-slip surface meant there was no slippage even if you walk long and fast enough to work up a sweat - it did happen!

To keep you motivated, the crisp LED screen sits in front of the treadmill and displays speed, time, distance, and calories. It was easy to keep track of my stats but I missed having a step counter. You can however sync your fitness tracker or the Mobvoi Health app for the most accurate stats like heart rate or average pace. It works well when paired with a Wear OS watch too - like the Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra GPS.

Performance

I tested the Mobvoi treadmill mainly for walking and getting some extra steps in around my kids, my work and my usual weights session. Walking felt easy and comfortable and there was no sign of the machine struggling even after an hour walking at 5km/h. The motor jerked as it started up but there was very little sound as I got into my flow and built up the speed. I could comfortably hold a telephone conversation without any background noise and it didn’t shake or rattle. 

The remote was responsive and the metrics kept me motivated - but one thing I had to get used to was not having any handrails to hold onto. It certainly requires focus to stay in the middle of the tread and therefore perfectly balanced; looking around to answer one of the kids was a no-no - this action saw me wobble a few times. I also found it helpful to wear a top or leggings with a pocket, which meant the remote was always nearby.

Verdict

Don’t be fooled. The Mobvoi Home Treadmill isn’t as expensive as it looks, and it certainly doesn’t feel cheap. In fact, this treadmill is a no-brainer for those primarily in need of a comfortable smooth-sailing, low-cost walking pad from a trusted brand. 

It was easy to store under my sofa or desk and comfortable and nimble enough to jump on throughout the day—shoes or no shoes.

Would I run on it? No way. It doesn’t feel wide enough, and the lack of handles or control bars took me some getting used to, even when walking, but I just loved having it at an arm’s length away so I could jump on it when on calls or read through some emails whilst getting some steps in. 

The simplicity means there’s no “I must work out” pressure or no frills. It’s just there! 

For the price, you also honestly can’t go wrong. It’s sturdy and sleek and offers a space-efficient fitness solution for those who want to be a little bit more active but don’t want a full-on treadmill - or have the motivation to walk or run outdoors. Sometimes there are just too many reasons to stay home.

Also consider

The  Lifespan TR1200-DT3 Under Desk Treadmill might be MUCH pricier *cough* than the Mobvoi Home Treadmill, but it doesn’t make it any more convenient to use. 

As an extra way to get some steps in over the course of the day - what more do you need than the Mobvoi? You could say that the width is more comfortable on the Lifespan - but if you know your limits when on the Mobvoi, you can and will adapt.

Another affordable option is the UMAY Portable Treadmill which equally provides a smaller portable version of a typical tread.

Alternatively, you could go all out and invest in a proper treadmill for home, like the entry-level JTX Sprint-3 or the completely fold-flat Echelon Stride.

Both are options for those looking for more speed and workout modes to further progress their cardio efforts, but in no way as simple as a walking pad, which I love for its simplicity, discretion, and manoeuvrability. The convenience of it is a huge draw.

Lucy Miller
Freelance writer

Lucy Miller is a journalist, Level 3 Personal Trainer, Nutritional Advisor and Children’s Fitness Specialist. She holds fitness qualifications from NASM Training and Premier Training International and has been a fitness journalist and fitness (and cover) model for over 20 years. Since going freelance in 2014, Lucy left Men’s Fitness Magazine to write for an abundance of top consumer titles such as Women’s Health, Women’s Fitness, Waitrose, The Times, The Guardian and Runners World.


She’s also extremely passionate when it comes to educating others about health and physical activity and loves inspiring and working with children and adults to help make fitness fun, sustainable and accessible. In her spare time, Lucy is ever the sportswoman. Once a national gymnast, having won three national titles, she has also run a handful of marathons around the world and loves to test her physical and mental side with daily running and gym sessions, not to mention ballet, bootcamp, boxing and TRX.