19
Sep
Moves-Thumb

There's a reason Moves has attracted millions of downloads on iOS. It doesn't require the purchase of a separate device, instead turning the smartphone that's already in your pocket into a pedometer. This isn't unheard of on Android, but Moves is available for free and isn't weighed down by ads. ProtoGeo wants Moves to be an app that mainstream people actually use, and that means keeping it clean, simple, and non-intrusive.

Moves1 Moves4 Moves5

No, seriously, Moves is simple. When you fire up the app for the first time, it informs you that it will track your steps, and that's it. The introduction ends, and there are no visible buttons outside of the overflow menu button in the top right corner. There's just a solidary green circle wondering why you haven't started walking yet, because until then, neither one of you will have anything to do.

Moves gradually displays useful information the more you use it. Eventually it will let you know how many steps you've taken, how far you've walked, how long you traveled, and where you've been.

Moves2 Moves3

How does ProtoGeo plan to profit from a free app with no ads? Eventually they hope to add in-app purchases that will appeal to more dedicated users, those who aren't likely to be discouraged when the app pushes them to exercise more often. But in the version of the app released today, those additions are nowhere to be found.

So if you're at least passively interested in tracking your steps, gives Moves a try. It's free, and it does its best to stay out of your way.

Bertel King, Jr.
Born and raised in the rural South, Bertel knows what it's like to live without 4G LTE - or 3G, for that matter. He now lives in the City of Bridges, adjusting to the presence of actual snow. His phone of choice is the HTC One.

  • http://www.vinsonimages.com yamaha83

    wonder how this does with battery life...

    • http://cassidyjames.com Cassidy James

      It's supposed to be using the new Play Services location features, which are better on the battery than traditional tracking. We'll see. :)

      • mgamerz

        Given that the last version (or maybe its still in this version) had a bug where it never released a wake lock, I'd hope it doesn't use those services. My poor Gnex :(

      • Yuku Sugianto

        The app permission list doesn't indicate it uses Google Play Services for activity recognition. Moreover, Google Play Services activity recognition does not differentiate walking and running.

        • Magneira

          I think he meant the new location services that uses the always on wifi that uses less than 1% of battery per hour on Android 4.3.

          I´m using it on my nexus 4 and it really does not cosume battery.

    • Tim Glaser

      It senses when movement is happening so it doesn't seem to affect battery life unless you are using it, and then, not significantly so.

      I'm happy with it.

      Wish there was a widget though.

      • Joris Griffioen

        "It senses" is not magically better, that means it's constantly polling sensors.

        Anyway, I think it'll require some experience to see how it is in practice.

        • Tim Glaser

          The phone is already constantly 'sensing' your activity level. It's just part of what it does unless you have stuff turned off [I don't even know what stuff].

          Google Now comes up with a monthly activity summary based on this very stuff. That doesn't seem to be a massive battery problem for me since I leave that on all the time.

          • Joris Griffioen

            Sure, but every time an extra app starts listening, it does processing based on that data. Using the Google Location Provider saves it a lot of "figuring out what's going on", which should save a lot of battery. But still every app that's listening is not only listening, it's also interpreting.

          • Magneira

            Remember the always on wifi on Android 4.3 that uses less than 1% battery? I think they are using that for location, if your smartphone does not have a pedometer, it cant use it, and the acelerometer is no replacment for that.

    • Paul_Werner

      Being that I read it uses just GPS (at least at this point) to track if you are walking or driving, I'm assuming it won't be all that great:

      Here's their FAQ:
      http://www.moves-app.com/faq

      Hopefully when they say "We’re continuously working on minimizing battery consumption even further." on the Play Store page that means they will implement Android's Geofencing feature in the future

  • alexcue

    Compatible with my Nexus 7 FHD and my Droid X, but not my Note II? Wat.

    • dobbsy

      Exactly what I encountered. Works with my N7 but not my Note II. Bizarre.

      • James Han

        If you read their FAQ, they specifically mention the Note II as being the only high-end device currently that does not support access to its accelerometer while the screen is turned off. You can probably imagine why that would be a problem for an app like this.

  • mssmison

    I've been using it since beta and it's actually really good on battery on my HTC One running 4.3 sense. They've built in some neat tricks to save battery, like not polling gps when the phone isn't moving for example. I'd sure like to be able to export gpx's.. hopefully that'll come soon enough.

  • Chris Rosenquist

    Stupid question: How does it know if you're walking or cycling or running or sitting in a moving car, etc.?

    • Sir_Brizz

      It uses that new Location API Activity Recognition. It was in one of the last Play Services API updates so everyone from 2.3+ has it.

      https://developer.android.com/google/play-services/location.html

      • https://play.google.com/store/apps/developer?id=iWizard Bikram Agarwal

        That might not be it. I'm guessing walking / cycling / driving is detected via accelerometer in the phone. And maybe calculating how fast your location is changing.

        • mgamerz

          Which is done through the activity recognition api.

  • mydroidhaswood

    Who uses this and why on earth do you use it? Is it out of necessity (I couldn't imagine this) or just because you want it?

    • https://play.google.com/store/apps/developer?id=iWizard Bikram Agarwal

      I've also stayed away from such apps so far; wondering what exactly is the benefit. But now I really want to know. I'm not a "visits gym regularly" kind of guy. How does apps like these help me?

      • mgamerz

        It's interesting to see how you spend your life. To see how much you travel, walk, run...

        Idk, it makes me think of a documentary TV show (like PBS ones) that talk about another culture. Like an example: "On average a japanese commute is 1 hour subway rides as there is little to no driving done in the main cities"

  • thedosbox

    Anyone else think their logo looks a little too much like Motorola's?

  • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/ron-amadeo/ Ron Amadeo

    Wait so... this isn't a Motorola app?

    • Sam Hollis

      He's back guys! Quick! Grab him before he escapes again!

  • Abhimanyu Seth

    Incompatible with my Verizon Note 2!??? :O WTF?
    Can anyone share the apk link?

    • Scott Breitbach

      From the description:
      "Unfortunately, Samsung Note II cannot run its accelerometer sensor in the background. We have tried different solutions, but we have not found a satisfactory way to support the device. We would really like to support Note II and try to find a way in the future"
      ...I wonder if this is the reason my Google Now never gives me a walking/biking activity summary card.

  • spydie

    yep, same here, note 2... incompatible? Can't believe it!

  • Rob Byrnes

    I've been using Saga, which seems similar to Moves

  • Arian D

    My daily activities : Home - Work - Home. I Hope the app won't mock me, " Dear user, you have a boring life."

  • Ash

    available for my motorola tablet but not by note 2 :(

  • Ugo

    This is one of the few Android apps that looks much better than the iOS counterpart.

  • Calvin Or

    How come its not for note 2?? :////