Cyclemeter and Runmeter use your iPhone’s GPS features to track, map, and rate your cycling or running route. They give you a lot of data—much more than the “native” Nike+ app—but suffer from problems with iPhone connectivity.
What is it?
Cyclemeter and Runmeter are, basically, workout apps. As the name implies, they’re designed specifically for cyclists and runners, keeping track of time, distance travelled, speed, and calories burned. The apps are even capable of creating route maps.
How does it work?
They use your iPhone’s GPS functionality (and therefore, will not work with an iPod touch). If you’ve used the Nike+ application, consider these the Final Cut Pro to its iMovie. You get so much more data here, as well as options to export it (like, say, sending your bike routes to Google maps). In addition to the onscreen data, you can visualize your route on a map, configure audio announcements, and race against your own previous runs or against your friends.
Is it contagious?
For casual to moderate workouts who are also data junkies, yes. If you’re in a club or on a team, the app also features sharing options (Facebook, Twitter, or Google Maps, as well as good ol’ email) to make it a little more competitive.
The apps’ biggest problem? The iPhone’s GPS functionality,
which isn’t true GPS (which is to say, supported by satellites), but which uses cell towers to position you, and can drop out at infrequent but annoying times. Update: as readers have pointed out, the iPhone does use a “combination of GPS, Wi-Fi, and cellular towers.” But at times the GPS does drop out (infrequently), causing the route map to miss a turn, etc.
Still, if you’re getting serious about tracking your cycling/running workouts, and if you have an iPhone, these are delicious apps that gives you every scrap of data you could want.