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  1. #1
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    My opinions on some iPhone cycling apps.

    This is cross posted from the GPS HRM section. l Sorry if that offends anyone but I put a lot of work into it and would like it to reach a greater audience.

    I've checked out a few of the iPhone tracking apps and thought I'd share my experiences and observations.

    First I started out with Strava, and then Endomondo. I also checked out MotionX-GPS. I used Strava for a while but missed the ability to see a map while I ride. Endomondo has this and that worked for a while but then I heard about MotionX-GPS and once I saw "their" "MotionX Terrain" map I was sold. I'd start to track my ride with Strava or Endomondo then switch to MotionX-GPS for the ride. This worked okay but I was annoyed by having to use two apps.

    Then I complicated the situation by buying a Wahoo Fitness Blue SC Sensor and ordering a Wahoo Fitness Blue HR monitor. I don't have my iPhone 5 yet so I haven't actually used either device yet (I have the iPhone 4, currently, which doesn't support the Bluetooth mode those devices need) but with this in mind I had to reconsider my choice of tracking apps. I want one app that will do everything I want it to do and to work with my sensors.

    The apps that I have checked out that support both my sensors are Strava, Cyclemeter and Runtastic Mountain Bike. Endomondo and MotionX-GPS support the HR monitor and I thought they support the SC but they do not. They are included in my comparison only for completeness.
    Here are the pros and cons as I see them. As these are based on my needs they are likely to differ from yours but if anyone has any comments Iíd like to hear them.

    Strava
    Pros:
    Large community to compare performance with.
    Clean uncluttered interface while recording Ė mostly due to lack of a map
    Cons:
    Inability to see map while recording Ė for me this takes it out of the running.
    $60 a year for features others include for a one time purchase.

    Endomondo
    Pros:
    Ability to see the map while I ride
    Active community with local routes added by others
    Cons:
    The deal killer for me is the lack of support for my SC sensor.
    Maps are not as good as MotionX-GPS

    MotionX GPS
    Pros:
    Excellent maps. I thought these were proprietary but turns out they are from OpenCycleMap.
    Cons:
    Overly complex user interface. This might be a pro for you as itís packed with features.
    I do not like it for logging and it does not support my SC anyway. No dice.

    Cyclemeter
    Honestly I did not give this one much of an evaluation once I saw that Runtastic has the maps I like and this one does not.
    Pros:
    The user interface looks clean
    Uncluttered screen while recording.
    Cons:
    Lack of OpenCycleMaps

    And, for me at least, the winner is:

    Runtasticís Mountain Bike Pro

    Pros:
    It has the excellent maps from OpenCycleMaps
    Works with both sensors
    Ability to download maps so that it doesnít need internet when Iím riding.
    Cons:
    I wish I could zoom in further on the downloaded map. The source map lets me zoom more
    The map screen could be a little less cluttered.

  2. #2
    Obi
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    Quote Originally Posted by MoTec View Post

    Cyclemeter
    Honestly I did not give this one much of an evaluation once I saw that Runtastic has the maps I like and this one does not.
    Pros:
    The user interface looks clean
    Uncluttered screen while recording.
    Cons:
    Lack of OpenCycleMaps
    TOO MANY DAMNED REDUNDANT BACK TO BACK UPDATES THAT DON'T HELP AND THEN NOTHING FOR MONTHS. WTF.
    Fixed. I am starting to really hate CycleMeter. If I could block the updates once I find a version I like I'd be stoked. Tried to ignore them for a month stretch and of course they are setup to not operate correctly if you forgo the updates.

  3. #3
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    LOVE the runtastic pro. love it.
    2012 Airborne Guardian.

  4. #4
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    Does the runtastic mountain bike app allow you to select different activities? If I run, can I log the activity as a run or does it only show it as a bike ride?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by bc3xx0 View Post
    Does the runtastic mountain bike app allow you to select different activities? If I run, can I log the activity as a run or does it only show it as a bike ride?
    Runtastic Mountain Bike lets you pick from Mountain Biking, Cycling or Handbiking, only.

  6. #6
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    I use to use the Runtastic app all the time. Then the GPS quality from it started going all to hell and it was unreliable. Switched to Strava and didn't have any of the same issues. I really liked how Runtastic let you add type of trail, weather conditions, smiley faces for how you felt... definitely lots of features! I just couldn't rely on it... eventually I stopped using the phone all together and got an Edge 500.

  7. #7
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    I'm a big fan of MotionX GPS, myself. I love being able to load my tracks into Google Earth, and it's also cool to download other's GPX and KML files into MotionX for usage in mapping. This was really useful when I went on a road trip through NC a few weeks ago and often was riding alone.

  8. #8
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    Iphone apps

    Thanks for the insight. I was using map my ride on my droid, but the end result was very inaccurate when compared to my buddy using his iphone. I will have to try Runtastic.

  9. #9
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    I have two mentioned but love the Gaia GPS app because it's so much more than a sports tool. It loads different types of maps, downloads areas of maps which saves phone storage and bandwidth. Its waypoints work with other phone navigation. It has mapping tools like make waypoints, photos, and export. With all that it does trip recording and export like other sports apps.

    I don't know of any other sports app that loads USGS topos which can be handy when you're out there. The off-line use and features good for sports make this worth considering. There's a free version but anybody who makes something this good deserves to be paid.

  10. #10
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    I'm glad people are finding my comments useful and I like the discussion. I don't have much need for USGS topo maps here in South Texas (it's very flat) but I'll check out Gaia GPS anyway.

  11. #11
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    Tried mapMyRide? My gf uses it for running and I plan to test it out this weekend.

  12. #12
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    I have tried Map My Ride and Endomondo, both loose signal when ridin heavily wooded trails, i do like them both, have run both, but by the end my ride, based on what my cateye is showing, the map and the endo can be off by as much as 1 to 1.5 miles!! i started riding back in may and have about 840 miles using both, the trails i ride are heavily wooded and the length of the trails is 6.5 miles!! so at the end they show 5 to 5.65 miles
    I have tried them on other rides at different locations in texas and still find this to be an issue.

  13. #13
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    sorry forgot to mention, I use Android

  14. #14
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    I haven't tried MapMyRide but I've heard good things.

    I did some testing with my iPhone in my Jeep and the mileage on the Jeep matched exactly with Runtastic. Even did a fair amount of offload miles. So far so good.

  15. #15
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    On android, I like to run Google MyTracks and just export the GPX file afterwards. I've noticed it's slightly less battery consuming, lets you see the map live, and report stats. It's no particular sport oriented, just raw GPS point data with average/max speed, elevation, among other universal data.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerz_subbie View Post
    Tried mapMyRide? My gf uses it for running and I plan to test it out this weekend.
    It worked really well with my iPhone4, I like it a lot! It gives you avg/max speed, avg/max pace, finish time, ET, elevation change, ride route over google maps, AND it didn't kill my battery. My battery went from 96-74% over my 90min ride today, so that means it's good for about 5hr, assuming it's linear. The map seems pretty good, too.

    When you log in on the computer you can see a log of your rides, can put multiple routes on the same map, and a lot more I haven't looked at yet. I mainly wanted a way to map out a new section of trail and see the stats mentioned above. Here is what the map looks like when you log in on the computer.


  17. #17
    joejoegunn357
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    I have been using MapMyRide and it has a lot of functionality. Has settings for "Road", 'Mtn", "Fixie" and many more. You can make your ride tracks "public" or "private", add other riders as "friends" in your area, share your tracked routes and ride data with others, see other routes in your area you didnt know about etc. If you travel by car and take your bike to an unfamiliar area, you can find the saved routes of others wherever you are. Upload your routes to Facebook or Twitter (just sayin). Battery drain doesnt seem too bad. Also has Voice Feedback for distance, time, avg pace, avg speed, at whatever time or distance increments you set.

    I tried calibrating it against my car but the oversized tires throws off the odometer. Will try again with wifey's car.

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