As is often the case, you get what you pay for. The cheaper poles will work fine for a while, but they probably won’t last for very long. I’ve used both cheap and expensive poles of various brands and in my experience (yours or other hikers experiences might be different) Black Diamond hiking poles are very good. My oldest one is around 15 years old and still in regular use. The cheap Kway poles I’ve had to replace a number of times and even though they are lighter, they simply don’t last long.
The main question with poles is wood, aluminium or carbon fibre. For me a wooden stick is simply too heavy and cumbersome. The carbon fiber poles are lighter than alu but also more expensive, and the weight saving doesn’t justify the price increase. However, the bigger issue for me with carbon fibre is that while they are strong in one direction, i.e. vertically. They can break easily when sideways pressure is applied, and then they shatter, they don’t bend. You do not want carbon fibre in your flesh and the spiky edges can do some damage.
So, for me, a good, solid aluminium pole works well in the berg. Regarding the stick getting in your way - most Osprey backpacks have a little lop where you can attach them on the side of your pack. It takes less than 20 seconds to collapse them and attach to your pack, so this is not an issue for me.
I’ve also hiked without poles, then 1 pole, then 2 poles and back to 1 pole now over the years. For very little extra weight they offer a lot of benefits for me. Hopping over rocks in the riverbed they certainly help to stabilise when my foot slips off a wet rock. They help to propel me forwards and upwards, and save my knees on a downhill. Unlike Ghaz I weigh a lot so I need all the help I can get, plus I carry some of my wife’s gear, adding to the overall weight my knees have to carry. Ever encountered tripgrass in the footpaths? Those long grasses you step upon with your one foot and it then catches your other foot? Well, this is no problem when you have a walking stick as you can move them out the way. Same with wet grass - it helps keep your boots drier for longer. It certainly helps when snakes are in the path, you can gently move them off the footpath without fear of being bitten. Hopefully you are never in this situation, but a walking stick make for a good self defence weapon - the carbine tip can penetrate flesh easily when applied with force. Lastly, I use mine also to lift the foot of my tent off the ground a bit. At 2m tall my feet are permanently stuck in the bottom part of my tent where they eventually get wet from condensation, but when I lift the guyrope higher with the pole, it solves this problem.
Don’t simply look at a hiking stick as a 1 use tool, it can be used for many applications. For me, carrying an extra 200g for all the above benefits is worth it.