Issues with my activity tracker


So I’m still using with my garmin activity tracker. The amount of running has decreased recently though. Maybe after the summer holidays I’ll get back into that. And having used it for ten months now I’ve found a few issues with it.

As it’s on my arm so it’s measuring what my arm does, not what my legs are doing. Which does cause a few anomalies, for example if my arm is still it doesn’t record the movement. This means that walking carrying things, or pushing things (eg a buggy, a bike or a shopping trolley) doesn’t count as steps. On the other hand clapping and doing arm circles do count as steps. This does mean that I now tend to bounce my hand up and down when I’m walking, to make sure that the steps count! And as the watch needs to process the data it’s receiving from the different sensors the display isn’t instantaneous.

A couple of times it has lost a few hours, which is annoying. For some reason this often seems to happen around Lidl, though I’m not sure why. And if it loses connection, which has happened a couple of times overnight, it doesn’t record anything.

As for the app, it has alot of stuff in it, but it’s not the most intuitive to navigate and lots of it is hidden. And it does require wifi or a data connection to work, as it syncs the data to the cloud. I wasn’t aware of this and was a bit frustrated the first time we went away. Of course now with the phone contracts allowing you to use your data across the EU this will be less of a problem. For now anyway!

 

One thing that I think could be easily improved would be for the watch to know your daily step record. It knows various running records, and will tell you as you’re going if you’ve beaten them, but not the daily step record. You have to sync the data and then poke about in the app to find out if you’ve set a new one. The app supposedly lists records for steps, running, swimming and cycling, but it doesn’t have any recorded for me for swimming or cycling. Despite having swum and cycled, and recorded the activities for these. Whether that’s because you can’t create swimming or cycling activities in the watch, and you have to edit them in the app to give them that classification I don’t know. It would be nice to see what some of them are though. Especially the cycling ones.

The step counter can go a bit crazy too. One day a couple of months ago I apparently climbed over twenty flights of stairs walking to pick my son up from school and back. That’s a distance of about half a kilometre each way, and (as we live in the Netherlands) is pretty much flat. School may be a metre higher than here, but no more than that. But there was a storm coming in, so the air pressure was changing and combined with my walking triggered the stair counter.

Overall these are mainly little niggles and I’m quite used to wearing it and checking it to see how I’m doing during the day.

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