Walking is a good way to get fit because everyone can do it, no matter how unfit they start out. These four pedometer apps for Android phones tracks activity to encourage you to walk more.
Price: Free | By: ITO Technologies | Size: 6MB | Android: 4.0 and up
The name says it all and Pedometer is an app to count the steps you take each day and record them. It then provides daily, weekly and monthly views of the data it has collected.
The interface is the best feature of the app and it provides a collection of 20 different colour schemes to choose from.
Day, week and month tabs are across the top and on each one there is a large steps number and a chart. The chart displays any of four different types of data, shown in the table below the steps You can view the calories burned, time spent walking, miles or metres walked, and speed.
I really like this app, mostly because of the brilliantly simple interface and data display, but it consistently appeared highest in the battery usage monitor on my phone.
However, the app provides several ways to reduce battery usage. An Energy-saving mode reduces battery drain and a Hardware mode saves even more battery for example. You can also set the hours when you normally sleep, which turns off monitoring to reduce battery usage.
This is an excellent pedometer app, but you need to turn on the battery saving options in the settings.
Step Counter - Pedometer Free & Calorie Counter
Price: Free | By: Leap Fitness Group | Size: 15MB | Android: 4.1 and up
Step Counter has a simple home screen that shows the data you need. The number of steps taken today is shown in the centre and at the bottom is the distance walked, the calories burned and the time spent walking.
The Report tab shows your steps for today, this week and this month as charts. More charts are available by tapping the Calorie, Time and Distance buttons. These enable you to see your progress daily, weekly and monthly. A Timeline screen shows the history day by day.
In the settings you can add your gender, weight and step length to improve the accuracy of the figures. There aren’t any battery saving options, but the app did not appear to use significant battery power.
The app gamifies the pedometer by awarding badges for achieving steps and calories burned targets.
The app is good, but I found the interface needed more taps and swipes to get at the data than Pedometer.
Pedometer - Six Pack Workout
Price: Free | By: iCare Fit Studio | Size: 21MB | Android: 3.0 and up
Pedometer - Six Pack Workout is more than just an app for counting steps and it is a general purpose health app. It can check your vision, hearing, blood pressure, heart rate, lung capacity, respiratory rate, oxygen, and psychology.
Most of these involve placing your finger over the camera on the back of the phone. It turns on the flash and takes a measurement. A mobile phone is not a medical instrument, so anything measure is probably not accurate, but it is fun to try them.
The pedometer is the main function of the app and it measures the usual steps, distance in metres and the calories burned. In the History section are some nicely presented charts showing the steps today, this week, this month and this year. It only shows the steps and not the calories or time though.
There is a social aspect and there is a forum available if you want to join and chat with others.
If you want a general health app that tracks a wide range of body functions, this is a good app to have. The pedometer is OK, but not the best.
Noom Walk Pedometer
Price: Free | By: Noom Inc. | Size: 29MB | Android: 4.1 and up
Noom Walk Pedometer is designed to be as simple as possible, with no distractions. However, it may be too simple for some users and all it does is count steps. It does not track the time spent walking or try to calculate the calories burned or average speed.
The home screen shows your profile picture and the number of steps so far today. Swipe left and it shows the last week and the all time number of steps. It also shows the all time daily record for steps.
The history display is a dull text list of each day’s steps. Unusually, there is an export option, so you could load the data into a spreadsheet on your computer if you wanted to analyse it. It seems too much effort though.
I found Noom Walk Pedometer less interesting than the other apps on test and it does not track as much, but it does have a couple of useful features. One is that it integrates with Noom Coach for losing weight. There is also a social aspect too.
The best pedometer app
The apps turned out to be in the order in which I liked them most, with the first, Pedometer being my favourite. It is the one I will keep, providing I can get the battery usage down by tweaking the settings. The interface is excellent and it tracks everything you need.
It is worth pointing out that pedometer apps do not count other activities, so you could be very active and very fit through lifting weights in the gym, cycling, or swimming. That's partly why my totals are so low. However, even if you do other activities, it is still a good idea to increase the number of steps you take every day. Any increase in activity is good for you.
- Written by Roland Waddilove
- Created: 14 December 2017