APP OF THE DAY: RunKeeper review (Windows Phone 7, iPhone, Android)
If you’re like us, you probably like a good drink, some hearty food and probably a bit too much snack time, sitting on the sofa playing games. But all that luxury and fun means you’ve got to pay for it some how, and the Run Keeper app is hoping to help you do just that.
- Windows Phone 7
Although you can get the app on iOS 5 (iPhone, iPod touch) and Android, we’ve tested the app on Windows Phone 7.
Fire up the app and you are presented with the ability to instantly start a new activity. You can either opt for the GPS or manual entry, the activity type you are doing like running, cycling, mountain biking, cross-country skiing, swimming, and a host of other sports. There is even elliptical trainers at the gym. You are also able to choose a pre-determined route if have set one up via the accompanying website (more on that in a mo).
Once you’ve selected your activity and pressed go the stopwatch starts. The app gives you a number of stats on the activity screen allowing you to clearly see your time, the GPS signal (for tracking your activity), the average mile per hour, the calories you’ve burned and the total distance you have run. There is also the option to see your current pace in minutes per mile.
While we found ourselves using this screen the most in our training runs you can opt to see a map instead – it pulls the mapping data in from Bing – however for running we weren’t running fast enough to feel this added any thing to the mix. You are able to stop or pause the app at any time.
At the end of your activity you can add a note to the run for future reference (like that hurt).
The second part to the app is the history of your runs and this allows you to pull up past runs to show off to your mates. A slide swipe brings up the map with your run traced on the route with mile markers added so you can quickly see what’s what.
This part is handy for looking at future routes, as well as, just allowing you to see and enjoy how far you’ve run. Anything that helps is another motivator.
The final part of the app in Windows Phone 7 is Live Tile support. This means that if you pin the app to your home page it will give certain details on your home screen constantly reminding you what you’ve achieved.
Here you can show distance, duration, calories, average pace, or even elevation gain with those details calculated over the week, the month, or your best activity, week or month. You can also opt to only have certain activities or all of them.
Over the last couple of months using the app we’ve found this to be a great feature and one that is a constant reminder of whether you’ve done well that week or not. Again another good motivator.
There is also Facebook and Twitter integration, plus more importantly the ability to run the app underneath the lock screen.
Where the app really shines is the website that comes with it.
Sign in and you can manage all your activities, look up new routes, manage your Street Team with other friends that are running or cycling on Facebook and see additional information on your runs like elevation and split times.
The combination of the simple to use app, and the power of the website makes this a great combination for runners, cyclers and anyone else looking to track their fitness. With the calorie tracker included into there too you even get to work out just how many snacks you’ve earned yourself.