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Although the 10,000-step formula is based more on a Japanese marketing ploy than it sounds like science, step counting is a fitness metric that has stood the test of time for decades. The elderly among us may remember mechanical pedometers attached to our belts to track our steps throughout the day. These days, digital wearables like the Apple Watch play that role.
But what about the iPhone? You might not realize it, but the iPhone is a fitness tracking device that is useful for those who haven’t bought an Apple Watch.
Step Tracker For Iphone
Step counting is part of the iPhone courtesy of the M-series motion co-processor and the Health app. No third-party app is required, but such apps can add ease of use and useful features. I tested a few of them – more on that soon. But, first, let’s look at the basic iPhone features.
Steps: Activity Tracker, Pedometer And Step Counter For Iphone
First, make sure your body measurements are set correctly in the Health app. Height is an important metric because it allows the iPhone to measure your progress more accurately. Tap Browse below, then go to Body Measurements > Height > Add Details to enter your height.
Once you’re done with Health, go to Settings > Privacy > Motion & Fitness to check if fitness trackers are enabled. You should enable Health in the app list below. Do the same with any third-party pedometer apps you try.
Your health app is now ready to count steps! Put your data front and center in Health to more easily monitor your daily progress. Go to the Health app summary screen and tap Edit in the upper right corner. In the list that appears, tap on the star that corresponds to the steps. Tap Done. Rank data is now displayed as a favorite in the summary screen, which also shows rank trends over time.
Other metrics you’ll want to make more visible include exercise minutes, flights climbed, and walking + running distance. When you do so, they will also appear as cards on the summary screen.
Pedometer Apps Turn Your Iphone Into A Step Counter
Apple’s Health app works well enough to not need a third-party step tracker, but there are some good ones that improve your user experience in various ways. Here are two of my favorites: Activity Tracker Pedometer and Pedometer++.
Activity Tracker Pedometer is free, but you can unlock additional pro features for a one-time payment of $4.99. This is my favorite app of its kind (and I’ve tried many) mainly because of its colorful, elegant, innovative and easy-to-use interface.
The activity tracking pedometer home screen displays your step count for the day along with a ring that estimates how close you are to reaching your preset daily benchmark. Below are measurements of your calories burned, minutes of exercise, miles walked and flights taken.
Additional data is just a swipe or a tap away. Cycle through the previous days summary screens by tapping at the top or swiping right. Tap the key step count readout to see hourly activity charts. Tap any of the day buttons below for a daily activity chart and tap any bar for hourly details for that day.
How To Use Your Iphone As A Pedometer
Additional features include a daily reminder notification and today’s widget. There’s also an option to import your health app’s historical data if you plan to rely primarily on the activity tracking pedometer or want to store older health data in a third-party app.
Free Pedometer++ has the virtue of simplicity, which is one of the reasons I love it. Also, it has some features that I haven’t seen in other step counting apps.
The app’s main interface is a large graph that shows day-to-day step counts. Above is the current count of the day as well as the miles walked and floors climbed.
The Achievements section, via a ribbon-style button on the top right, helps you achieve a variety of goals (like consecutive day streaks). This is great for iPhone users who don’t have an Apple Watch with that device’s signature achievement badges.
Activitytracker 2: Step Counter For Iphone & Apple Watch — Tools And Toys
Minor gripes include the slightly outdated interface style (which looks great with darker interfaces) and the notification at the bottom of the main screen (hard to avoid with downloadable pedometer apps). You can remove the ad with a $1.99 in-app payment, but you don’t get any additional functionality that I can see.
As I mentioned, there are many other step counting apps. If my pick doesn’t do it for you, search the App Store for “step pedometer” to get a taste of what’s out there. Be warned that some apps have aggressive full-screen ads, Facebook login ads, subscription fees instead of one-time fees to unlock premium features, and other concerns.
Regardless of the app, the trick to using an iPhone as a step counter is to make sure you always have it with you. Unlike an Apple Watch that’s always on your wrist, it’s easy to leave your iPhone in bed or on your desk at work when you get up to walk around. So get used to holding it.
I tend to forget my iPhone, so a smartwatch is the only realistic option to accurately track my fitness activity. If you can afford an Apple Watch, I encourage you to step in; It’s a more convenient health tracker (and, many iPhone step counting apps have Apple Watch features).
The Best Iphone Apps For Tracking Steps
If you’re on a budget or use your iPhone for fitness tracking more your style, the Health app may suit your needs, and if not, ActivityTracker Pedometer and Pedometer++ offer other interfaces free.
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IPhone 5 generation and above automatically track your steps through a built in accelerometer. The results are usually accurate because our phones are almost always with us wherever we go.
How To Track Steps On An Iphone Using The Apple Health App
The built-in health app shows the number of steps, stairs climbed and distance walked as well as walking. If you are wondering how to track your steps with your iPhone (and when to see these data, ), this guide is for you. Let’s jump in.
By default, it is enabled. However, if your iPhone isn’t showing your steps or you’ve turned them off, here’s how to turn them back on.
As we mentioned earlier, your iPhone will automatically start counting steps; You don’t need to do anything special (as long as movement and fitness tracking is on). If you’ve been using your iPhone for a while, you probably already have step count data in the Health app. Here’s how to watch it.
Tip: Another simple method (especially for less tech-savvy family members) is to use a third-party app called Pedometer++. This app takes your motion & fitness data and displays it in the simplest way possible.
How To Track Steps With The Iphone Health App
Let’s say you’re out on your usual morning walk when you realize you’ve dropped your iPhone. If you have another way of tracking your walking steps, you can enter your step count manually so that the record is kept. Here’s how:
We hope you have learned how to track steps using the Health app on your iPhone. We’ve also included some frequently asked questions. Check them out – if you have any other questions, ask them in the comments section below. We want to hear from you!
You can add duplicate steps to your health app. This number may look good for bragging on social media, but it serves no real purpose. To duplicate steps, open the iPhone Health app » Steps under Summary » Add Details » type steps and tap Add.
You can track your iPhone while running through exercises like shadow boxing, skipping, dancing, etc.
Stepsapp Pedometer App
According to reports, more than 10000 steps per day are considered ‘active’. Degrees below 7500 to 10000 are considered mildly active and less active than this. When the number drops below 5000 degrees per day, it qualifies for a sedentary lifestyle!
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I have been an Apple user for over seven years now. At , I love creating how-to and troubleshooting guides that help people do more with their iPhone, iPad, Mac, AirPods, and Apple Watch. In my free time, I like to watch stand-up comedy videos, technology documentaries, news talks and political speeches.
Marcus is a freelance technology writer/editor
How To Use Your Iphone As A Pedometer
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