Reader Question: Using your iPhone as a Speedometer

I receive questions from readers like you all the time, and I love it! The question I received that prompted this post was one that I hadn't really been asked before, so it was worth a post. The question is this: "I am an avid cyclist and am looking for an easy way to track my speed and distance using my iPhone, which is already attached to my handlebars for music and texting. Do you have any recommendations?"

My first thought was, why not use a Garmin or other devices that are specifically designed for sports like cycling? But if you already have you're iPhone mounded to your handlebars for music and texting, I have just the app for you!

While seemingly limited in functionality, Speedometer+ (currently priced at $1.99 US) is a simple app that does 2 things.... displays current speed and total distance. Ok, it does a little more than that (like tracking max speed), but it really is designed to be a simple app with an easy-to-read interface. This is key for cycling because you want to be focused on the road and not your iPhone.

You can track your speed in 3 measurement types... miles per hour, kilometers per hour and knots. Sure, it can be used for cycling, but it can also be used for so much more! Driving, skateboarding, boating, flying... even running! While it may not be ideal for some situations, it can still be fun. The other day, my kids had a contest to see who could run the fastest. I armed each of them with my iPhone, turned the app on and let them lose. When they returned from their short 30-second sprint, we compared their results with other results to determine who was fastest.

A useful hint: the more accurate your GPS signal is, the more accurate your speeds will be. My testing shows that when I had a strong signal, my speedometer ready was very accurate.

Posted on April 18, 2016 and filed under How To, iOS, iPhone, Opinion.