Exploring Smartphone Walking Trackers

One of the things I love about my friends is that they occasionally send me articles that focus on walking, fitness, and health.  The other day my friend Lorraine sent me a link comparing smartphone fitness trackers.  The first two caught my attention.  I could take photos, while mapping my walk, and then share them via Facebook, email, and other sites! This is something that we at CameraWalking have been looking for – finding an app that allows us to capture photos along the stops we make while walking, and then be able to share them.

Waiting for Conversation

Waiting for Conversation

I decided to try Trails first, a free app available for IOS and Android phones.  It is very intuitive and I found it easy to take photos after a few tries on the in-app photo capture button.  While I was clicking away, my stats were there to let me know that I wasn’t walking as fast as I thought, so I picked up my pace.  I also saw that I hadn’t walked as far as I had planned, so I added more streets to the route to get to a minimum of 3 miles.

Queen Anne Walk

Queen Anne Walk

I was excited to return and share my walk, but I discovered that I could only export my walking route without the photos.  Unless I am missing something, which is possible, it seems like the photos are only saved to look at, but not share.

Queen Anne Walk

Queen Anne Walk

Well okay, it still was fun to use, so I decided to export the photos to my desktop from my phone.  What I didn’t expect were the high resolution photos, such as this gate along my walk.

Gateway

Gateway

Or this flower that was wet from a recent rain fall.

Rain Drops

Rain Drops

It even tracked my stop for a latte at Diablo Cuban Coffee where I captured this fun shot.

Cuban Coffee

Cuban Coffee

The other app I decided to take for a test walk is LiveTrekker, which is also available for IOS and Android phones. I took it out for a spin on my walk the next day.

LiveTrekker

LiveTrekker

It was a bit more complicated.  I had to register, then activate my account on their website, and it turns out I had to manually enable the GPS access in my iPhone settings, which I didn’t do until I returned from my walk.  As a result I had a few photos and no map. Clearly “operator error.”

It did track how long my walk was, and the photos downloaded in high resolution, which I appreciated.  I exported them to Lightroom and made a few edits, but they were good right out of the camera phone.

Rose Walk

Rose Walk

Fabric Quitars

Fabric Guitars at the Northwest Folk Festival

Like the author of the New York Times’ article, I like LiveTrekker’s photographic map, so I will experiment more over the next few days, now that my GPS is enabled, and see how this app fully works.

Photographic Map

Photographic Map

A couple lessons learned for me:  first get familiar with the app before charging out the door (enable GPS!), and be sure to have a fully powered phone since these apps can drain your battery pretty quickly.

Although I prefer walking with my Canon 6D on the weekends, I found tracking my walk, seeing my statistics, while taking photos with my iPhone a fun option. Let us know what tracking apps you use and like by commenting below, posting on our Facebook page, or sending us an email at getmoving@camerawalking.com.  We love to hear from you.

 

Image | This entry was posted in Camera Walking, Creativity, Photography, Tracking walks and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s