With the unveiling of Google Fit - an android health and fitness app, the tech giant becomes the latest major player to move towards the health and fitness market.
Though previous Android wearables such as the Moto 360, LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Fit all exhibit some aspects of Google’s app in a basic form, the app’s release reveals a lot more.
The free app is compatible with other wearables and other fitness apps, making it a rival to Samsung, Facebook, Apple and LG who all have their competing software. The cross compatibility with Strava, Withings, Runtastic, Runkeeper and Noom Coach represents an advantage over its more linear rivals, allowing users to manage all their apps from Google Fit.
This aggregation makes otherwise fundamental limitations such as the lack of an automatic heat rate measuring service less relevant for mobile phones as other apps can fill the gaps. However, on wearables where memory is a premium, having to use multiple apps may be a turn off for some users.
Google Fit can also track your steps, set goals, measure calories consumed and burnt though these are all fairly standard uses of a mobile device’s sensors by existing apps.
Google’s move into the health and fitness market has been long anticipated (they announced Google Fit in June). From the initial 5,415 reviews, the app holds a four star rating on the Android App store, though reviews suggest teething difficulties for both the app and its users.
See below for a sample of user reviews:
“Excited to see this implemented...but missing key things walking, running, and biking are not the only forms of workout. VERY happy to see that you can manually add an activity, but how about the other exercises? like situps, pushups, weight lifting, etc? it seems like pretty standard things to be able to add”
Andrew Minarik, 3 Stars
“Finally some Android Wear Support! I've been wanting an app that syncs my pedometer info from my Moto 360 to my phone and this does the trick. However, the app is very light on features and does not include a widget for your home screen to keep track of steps easily, unlike Samsung's S-Health. Hopefully Google will beef this up in the near future.”
Josh Faulkner, 3 Stars
“Not pulling data from Moto 360 I seem to have fallen in the camp that can't get the Google Fit app to pull steps and heart activity from my Moto 360. It seems to be counting steps from my phone only. I don't have the issue that many have reported where it wipes the fit data from my watch...likely as it's not talking to the watch. When I go to "Connected apps and devices" there is nothing listed...as numerous other people with the Moto 360 have reported. One oddity I've found is that the step count on my Moto 360 is now much higher than it should be. I've been up for an hour and just walking around my house shows that I've taken over 3600 steps...highly unrealistic. I don't know if this is some effect of the Google Fit app or not though.”
Boomshnka, 4 Stars
“Having only used walking this is great so farI thought this wasn't recording my steps while holding my phone at first. It just takes a little time to update so be patient. I rated this three stars because of that but spending a little more time with it I have upped it to 5.”
Brandon Bishop, 5 Stars