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Google Fit Gets Apple Watch-Like Activity Goals, Offers 'Move Minutes' and 'Heart Points' for Motivation

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Google Fit Gets Apple Watch-Like Activity Goals, Offers 'Move Minutes' and 'Heart Points' for Motivation

The updated Google Fit is a result of Google's collaboration with AHA and WHO.

Highlights

  • Google Fit has been updated with activity goals
  • The app provides you with Move Minutes and Heart Points
  • It also uses built-in sensors to detect your moves and activities

Google Fit has been redesigned, bringing new several new features. Most important, is the addition of activity goals - matching the Activity goals offered by Apple on the Apple Watch models. Google touts that it is working with the American Health Association (AHA) and the World Health Organisation (WHO) to bring the all-new fitness-focused features. The updated Google Fit app is also designed to automatically detect your walking, running, and biking activities using your phone or Wear OS-based smartwatch sensors and deliver different 'Heart Points' to motivate you to keep moving. The latest Google Fit update notably comes just weeks ahead of the new Apple Watch launch that is likely to happen alongside the debut of the 2018 iPhone models next month. A recent report also claimed that Google is working on a dedicated assistant for wearables that might arrive as Google Coach.

The new version of Google Fit has two main areas - while one is designed to highlight your physical activity, the other one allows you to detail what activities are impacting your heart. It is already a known fact that to stay fit, it is vital to move more and sit less. Google has now started using 'Move Minutes' to encourage users to make slight changes to your daily routine, like walking up stairs instead of taking an elevator or taking a walk instead of having a cup of coffee. The updated Google Fit app tracks all your physical activity using the built-in sensors either of your smartphone or smartwatch to give you accurate Move Minutes.

From what Google has explained in a blog post, Move Minutes on Google Fit looks similar to Stand Reminders on the Apple Watch app. The Apple-exclusive uses the accelerometer of the Apple Watch to alert users to change from a seated to a standing position for at least one minute an hour in a 12-hour period.

Alongside Move Points, the updated Google Fit app gives Heart Points that are gathered based on activities that get your heart pumping harder than its normal routine. "You'll score one point for each minute of moderate activity, like picking up the pace while walking your dog, and double points for more intense activities like running or kickboxing," Google said in the blog post.

The updated Google Fit uses sensors on your smartphone or smartwatch, such as the accelerometer and GPS, to detect your moves automatically and estimate the number of Heart Points you earn. Further, you can choose your specific activity from the list that has gardening, pilates, rowing, or spinning to let the app calculate the Heart Points and Move Minutes appropriately. The Google Fit app also works with other fitness apps such as Strava, Runkeeper, Endomondo, and MyFitnessPal to precisely credit your points on the basis of your activity. A journal combining all your activities, achievements, and goal progress across all your apps is available through the Google Fit app. Moreover, the app will also give you tips and help you adjust your goals over time based on your workout and daily activities.

Google says that the new changes will reach the Google Fit app on your Android smartphone or Wear OS device beginning this week. We weren't able to spot the update, though. However, you can visit Google Play to download the latest version. An APK file with the new version is also available for download through APK Mirror.

It is worth pointing out here that while there isn't any Google Fit app available for iOS devices, the new changes will come through the new Wear OS app for your iPhone. Ron Amadeo of Ars Technica first spotted the Google Fit development for iOS devices.

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Further reading: Google Fit, Google
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