RunKeeper Pro vs Nike+ GPS App Comparison

Posted on February 27, 2011

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For quite a while I only owned the Nike+ GPS app. Although I heard great things about the Run Keeper app, I just couldn’t bring myself to spend 9.99 for it (it seems to have no really special features worth that money). Finally, at the beginning of this year, the developers of Run Keeper did a great thing – made it free for a limited time to help jump start people on their new year’s goals of getting healthy and fit. It’s still free and it seems (from the research I’ve done) they are now just charging for RunKeeper Elite (a service you can get for free using Glympse instead). So, what’s the difference between these two similar apps?



First let’s look at Nike+ GPS

Pros:

  • Reasonable price point at $1.99
  • Easy to navigate
  • Live GPS tracking
  • Powersong option (you pick a song that motivates you, so when you need a little extra push you can activate that song to be played)
  • Multitasking
  • An indoor running option (when you can’t get GPS signal) which is very acurate
  • Motivational messages from top athletes
  • Sync your runs online, challenge friends, track your progress and even post directly to Facebook so people can “cheer you on” while you run
  • Can run in multiple languages
  • View a map of the run you just did and see a color coded track of you fast and slow points
  • Training plans (5k, half marathon, marathon)

Cons:

  • GPS drains battery life (doesn’t matter what GPS you’re running) so you need your battery full before going on a long run
  • At times the update is slow (you may glance down and it says you’re at a 15′ mile pace but you know you’re at a 10′) – this corrects itself though and ends up being pretty accurate in the end
  • Inability to manually add runs you’ve done – this can be a real bummer if you’ve set a goal for yourself and are using the app to keep track of your miles.

Now, let’s look at RunKeeper:

Pros:

  • It’s free
  • Great online community/profile that can add a lot to your running experience and is a great aid in tracking your progress
  • Choose from LOTS of different activities to track (ie, Snowboarding, swimming, rowing, elliptical, etc)
  • Manual entry of activities (if you had to go for a run without your phone you can still add how far you went, how many minutes you ran)
  • Fun map options (keep track of your routes online and name them)
  • Great detailed info of your run (see pics)
  • GPS signal meter telling you if it’s good or bad


Cons

  • Not as “pretty” as Nike+ GPS
  • Bad GPS signal indoors – not the apps fault…just a fact of GPS
  • GPS drains battery so you need to have a good charge before your run
  • No Power song

So, bottom line, which  is better? My vote is RunKeeper for the following reasons: it’s free, allows manual entry, has multiple activity options and a great online profile option for tracking routes, making friends with people you know and keep up with their progress (Nike GPS offers this last one as well but I like the way RunKeeper has it set up better).

Both are great. I give Nike+ 4 out of 5 and Run Keeper 4.5 out of 5. A close match. You decide which meets your needs best.

This is totally uncalled for, but I just realized that comparing apps could be one of the ways on how to flirt with a girl at the gym or at a marathon. Hmmm.

Is there something you like or don’t like about either of these apps? Please comment.

Want it now? Here’s the link to get it in the app store:
Nike+ GPS
Nike+ GPS - Nike, Inc.

RunKeeper
RunKeeper Pro - FitnessKeeper, Inc.

Posted in: Health