Most of you must have read the incident about my SD card in my previous post. So I have decided to review another running application on my iPhone. Similarly to my other reviews, I will review the Runtastic Pro application over a 3Km run. The Runtastic application comes in 2 versions: a Runtastic Pro version and a Runtastic version. Basically the Runtastic Pro version cost GBP£2.99 in the UK, while the Runtastic version is free from the App Store. Worth noting that these apps are available in iOS, Android, Windows Phone and BlackBerry, but this review is done for the iOS version using an iPhone 4. Below is the screenshot of the map of my run from the Runtastic website.
The app will take a few try to learn how to operate it. But once, you get a hang of it; it is actually quite easy to operate. I will rate the App 3.5 / 5 stars. This is because I felt the App is very commercialised. With the fee of GBP£2.99 I still need to pay for viewing my route online, otherwise it is a 30 days trail: Which is what I got. This was free in Map My Run app, which I previously reviewed. The elevation tracker is again incorrect like most apps. I guess this is because the apps uses the data provided by Google, which do not take into account of bridges (at least in and around Salford Quays).
The thing I like about this App is, your pace is actually shown on the map using colours. If you look close enough on the map, you will notice that the start and end points of the route I’ve taken are mapped in green and red dots respectively, while the route is mainly in yellow. Green symbolised excellent pace, then follow by yellow, orange and red. You will also notice that the phase before I reach Lowry Outlet Shopping Mall is in darker shade of yellow. This shows that I am running at a slower pace, basically because I have to climb up the bridge to cross the Quays. Not shown here is the elevation map. On all the Apps I have reviewed, this portion will normal be a trough. This is true if there wasn’t a water body there, but for my case it should rises because I was running on the bridge.
As I said, I think this is because these Apps uses data provided by Google and I guess the “experts” at Google have not came out with solutions to overcome this issue. An interesting issue for Google to investigate: Areas with bridges: should the elevation data be at the level of the bridge, water level or bed of the water body? Or even different levels of bridges that intersect? Maybe a separate data structure to encapsulate the different dimensions will be required? Or some form of measurement to overcome the ever changing landscape of cities and towns?
Regularly I do 3km run routes, and depending on my mood, I will change the route or play around with tech stuff to make my run more interesting. However, I do not document my route, and often, if I want to revisit a route, I cannot really remember it. So in this post, I am intending to document a 3.3km route and test the Map My Run App on my iPhone running iOS6.
Review of the route: This circular route is great for evening runners/joggers that want lovely views. Besides the start and end of the route, most parts of it are away from traffic and next to the waterside. The route is well paved and is fairly flat with gentle incline and decline. Great from beginners and elderly people!
Review of Map My Run App ( 3.5 / 5 stars ): An excellent iOS free App (You can pay to upgrade it to MVP). It documents the route fairly accurately, and you can revisit or fly through your route online using the account you registered before you can use the App. It looses half a star because it is energy hungry. It drained 11% of my battery while running only this App on my iPhone for the 3.3km route. Furthermore, it looses 1 star for its poor documentation of the route’s elevation. Disappointingly, most part of it is incorrect! This said, I would still recommend my readers to give the App a go and let me know your experience below.
If you have any thoughts about this article please also post them as comments below. I would love to hear them.