Android cycling apps

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Android cycling apps

Postby drubie » Mon Dec 20, 2010 9:51 am

I finally succumbed and bought myself a new phone (Motorola Defy) as the battery life on my ancient one was getting less and less every day.

Mostly I bought the Defy for the water-resistance / gorilla glass etc. but since it's running Android, has a GPS and has navigation capabilities, I figured I'd give the cycling apps a go.

The one I downloaded (b.icycle) seems...OK, it managed to pull out some plausible stats on my ride home on Friday (heh, fixie top speed of 40km/h on 40/16 gearing) but the GPS radio seems a little flaky at times, takes quite a while to initially acquire the signal in b.icycle compared to the ordinary navigation applications.

Has anybody else tried this stuff or does everybody own a Garmin or an iPhone?
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by BNA » Mon Dec 20, 2010 10:27 am

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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby sblack » Mon Dec 20, 2010 10:27 am

SportyPal could be worth a try.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby goneriding » Mon Dec 20, 2010 11:41 am

I've tried Endomondo which works well.

I still haven't found one that exceeds SportsTracker on the Nokia platform. I still use that over the Android.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby arope99 » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:22 pm

I found Endomondo to be the best free one so far.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby redcorpsjames » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:51 pm

i have tried sporty pal and emondo and prefer sporty pal
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby drubie » Mon Dec 20, 2010 1:56 pm

OK, going to try SportyPal but why is it preferred?

B.icycle is simple enough to use (start/stop/ autostop, has a live map, records multiple trips, lets you name routes, records times, distances, elevation, metres climbed and descended).

I guess the biggest problem is: as a training aid, what features are important other than the sorts of things I can already do with a bike computer. The metres climbed one was pretty interesting to me but I'm just not sure how useful it is.
So we get the leaders we deserve and we elect, we get the companies and the products that we ask for, right? And we have to ask for different things. – Paul Gilding
but really, that's rubbish. We get none of it because the choices are illusory.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby redcorpsjames » Mon Dec 20, 2010 2:57 pm

well your one does sound better than sporty pal and im going to download it right now and try it out. what more do you need than what you described. I like sportypal because its easy to use has most of the features you just described, however it doesnt have elevation which I want.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby ClownBoy » Mon Dec 20, 2010 3:55 pm

I love Cardio Trainer.

I actually use it for my running but it would be good for cycling also.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby stevecassidy » Mon Dec 20, 2010 8:01 pm

I've pretty much given up using the phone as a live cycling computer, the battery life with the display on even part of the time is not good enough (I have a Hero, a year old now). I use it to record longer rides, not the regular bunch rides or races, and now use either Cardiotrainer or Google's My Tracks. My Tracks because it was recommended by Strava, a web based ride analysis thing I just started trying out. My Tracks doesn't really interface to Strava, it just lets you email a GPX file to anyone and Strava accepts uploads this way. Cardiotrainer is better in that it automatically uploads when you're done but the web based analysis is not so good as Strava.

The killer feature of Strava for me is that it lets you mark out 'segments' of your ride (eg. climbs) and then finds everyone who's done that segment and lets you compare times. I've been looking for an android app that would keep track of my climbs without having to manually mark them every time. This works really well, plus i I change my phone or method of recording GPX files, it should still work - all the others are tied to one phone platform pretty much.

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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby Mean Machine » Mon Dec 20, 2010 9:53 pm

redcorpsjames wrote:I like sportypal because its easy to use has most of the features you just described, however it doesnt have elevation which I want.


It does have elevation, you need to upload your ride to the Web to see it though. What it doesn't do though, which annoys me, is an auto stop when you stop at traffic lights and such.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby drubie » Mon Dec 20, 2010 11:35 pm

Battery life seems to be a bummer on the Moto Defy with WiFi and GPS enabled, but if you drop the WiFi it doesn't seem too bad - enough for a GPS'd bunch ride I think.

The idea of a comparo against other riders sounds kinda OK, but frankly if you want to have a go around here, you'll know pretty soon once you pop out of the bunch how well you're doing as they whoosh past, so that isn't wouldn't be so useful to a (ahem) c grader.

What I really want is a "ghosted", post-ride account, or a logged time up those climbs. I think I can futz that with b.icycle but it'll take a few rides to work it out to see whether it can be synthesized from the results. There doesn't seem to be a ghosted kinda mode in it but you would think it wouldn't be hard to add to a cycling app.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby goneriding » Tue Dec 21, 2010 9:29 am

Endomondo has ghosting in the paid for version.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby redcorpsjames » Tue Dec 21, 2010 5:08 pm

Mean Machine wrote:
redcorpsjames wrote:I like sportypal because its easy to use has most of the features you just described, however it doesnt have elevation which I want.


It does have elevation, you need to upload your ride to the Web to see it though. What it doesn't do though, which annoys me, is an auto stop when you stop at traffic lights and such.

ah right I will give it a go thanks
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby petie » Wed Dec 22, 2010 1:34 pm

goneriding wrote:I've tried Endomondo which works well.

I still haven't found one that exceeds SportsTracker on the Nokia platform. I still use that over the Android.


i'm pretty sure you can get a version of sportstracker for Android.... have a look in the market

EDIT: I use Endomondo but more out of interest than as a training aid.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby brewski » Thu Dec 23, 2010 2:21 pm

I tried out My Tracks (up) and B.icycle (back) yesterday on a trip to Swansea, 20km each way. I have a HTC Desire. Just a couple of differences - My Tracks used about 10% of the battery whereas B.icycle used approx 16% (phone was at 53% when I left for the ride). My Tracks shows the following:
Total Distance
Total Time
Moving Time
Number of Tracks
Average Speed
Average Moving Speed
Elevation Gain
Min Elevation
Max Elevation
B.icycle does not take into consideration the stops, but it does have calories.
My Tracks, easy to use, email the track to your Google account it the appears in Google Docs as a spread sheet and you can use Google Maps to view it and share with others if you like, I'm going to go with this one. :wink:

Edit: By the way each test was for one hour, I sat at Macca's having a coffee until the hour clicked over, then on the way home cut the side out of the tyre and limped home, 1 hour again.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby goneriding » Thu Dec 23, 2010 2:34 pm

petie wrote:
goneriding wrote:I've tried Endomondo which works well.

I still haven't found one that exceeds SportsTracker on the Nokia platform. I still use that over the Android.


i'm pretty sure you can get a version of sportstracker for Android.... have a look in the market

EDIT: I use Endomondo but more out of interest than as a training aid.


Same name different app.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby drubie » Thu Dec 23, 2010 7:43 pm

brewski wrote:My Tracks used about 10% of the battery whereas B.icycle used approx 16% (phone was at 53% when I left for the ride).


OK, download time then - b.icycle is a total battery hog and it left me with gaps where it can't get the GPS signal on the Moto Defy, whereas the other navigation apps have no trouble at all. I'll send 'em a note about it but will be trying My Tracks I think. b.icycle also seems to take forever still to acquire it's location.
So we get the leaders we deserve and we elect, we get the companies and the products that we ask for, right? And we have to ask for different things. – Paul Gilding
but really, that's rubbish. We get none of it because the choices are illusory.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby goneriding » Fri Dec 24, 2010 8:48 am

Try also downloading GPS Status from the market. Apparently, it gets a signal faster by using either aGPS or GPS. I haven't had a chance to test it out yet but will report back once I do.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby Mean Machine » Fri Dec 24, 2010 12:03 pm

I tried SportsTracker for 2 days (been using SportyPal). I'm on the Nokia platform though, not Android. The interface is not as neat as SportyPal's but it has one important feature SportyPal lacks - auto pause. Below 2km/h (you can set a different value), for example, the timing pauses and resumes again once the speed is above that which gives you your riding time rather then total time. However, SportsTracker doesn't allow the screen to switch off, draining the battery. It's not too bad, but still, a bit lame. I think I'll go back to SportyPal.

EDIT: The screen turns off fine, I think I was just activating it when taking the phone out of my pocket at the end of the ride. I'm sticking with SportsTracker, I like it, even the website is good.
Last edited by Mean Machine on Tue Dec 28, 2010 8:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby drubie » Tue Dec 28, 2010 9:21 am

OK, I used b.Icycle today on a proper ride (not just tooling around town) and I'm warming up to it. Managed to track everything without any problems, gives good times, average speeds, elevation readings, emails you the KML file you can load into Google Earth. Other than the battery issues it's not bad. I have sent off a query to the b.icycle people about that to see what they reckon (they may not have tested the app on a Moto Defy, one problem with Android phones is the huge differences in hardware).

Really, it's pretty impressive. Perhaps not as good as buying a Garmin product, but given a few months I think either Garmin will have to release a phone, merge with Powertap or be out of business.
So we get the leaders we deserve and we elect, we get the companies and the products that we ask for, right? And we have to ask for different things. – Paul Gilding
but really, that's rubbish. We get none of it because the choices are illusory.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby Pushy » Tue Dec 28, 2010 11:36 am

drubie wrote:Really, it's pretty impressive. Perhaps not as good as buying a Garmin product, but given a few months I think either Garmin will have to release a phone, merge with Powertap or be out of business.

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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby drubie » Tue Dec 28, 2010 6:45 pm

Pushy wrote:
drubie wrote:Really, it's pretty impressive. Perhaps not as good as buying a Garmin product, but given a few months I think either Garmin will have to release a phone, merge with Powertap or be out of business.

Done


Hmm - too car oriented for me. I reckon the perfect setup would be a bluetooth, bike computer head unit with speed and cadence and HR displayed that spoke enough bluetooth to your smart phone to allow synchronous recording. That way, the phone stays in the pocket, happily mapping away, while the small display did the "immediate" stuff. Have your HR mapped against the GPS readings, you wouldn't need a powertap.
So we get the leaders we deserve and we elect, we get the companies and the products that we ask for, right? And we have to ask for different things. – Paul Gilding
but really, that's rubbish. We get none of it because the choices are illusory.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby thomashouseman » Sun Jun 19, 2011 7:38 pm

Any consensus on a good android app yet? This thread seemed to think MyTracks was the best so far... viewtopic.php?f=12&t=37609

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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby drubie » Mon Jun 20, 2011 9:50 am

I tried MyTracks and wasn't very impressed with it - it draws a very jagged path on my phone, gets the average speed very wrong, gets the top and lowest speeds very wrong as it tries to interpolate between obviously incorrect readings. b.iCycle does a better job of ignoring obviously wrong location samples and is just as flexible when it comes to exporting the track to other software.
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but really, that's rubbish. We get none of it because the choices are illusory.
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Re: Android cycling apps

Postby blkmcs » Mon Jun 20, 2011 10:30 am

I've used My Tracks and found it to be accurate enough.
I have compared it over the same route on 2 different bikes each bike fitted with a different computer.
All 3 devices were within 100 metres over the 35 Km route and average and top speeds were all very close.
However that was only on rides where My Tracks recorded the whole ride.
More often than not My Tracks would stop recording part way through a ride making it useless.
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