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Google Fit: Five things you need to know

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Google Fit: Five things you need to know

Google’s new fitness app, the appropriately named Fit, has just been released.

Revealed during the company’s annual I/O software event back in June, it's aimed at taking on Apple’s recently revealed Health app, pulling together fitness data to help users get in shape.

So, should you snag it? And will it really help you stop munching on sugary tat and get off the sofa for good?

Read on and we’ll tell you everything you need to know.

1 It’s Android-only

google fit stats

iPhone users, look away. For now, only users with Android phones can get hold of Google Fit.

You’ll need a smartphone or tablet packing Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich or higher, so that covers pretty much every key Android phone release for the past two to three years.

Despite Android becoming increasingly fragmented, even those with old school phones that don’t have swanky features can get involved.

2 It’s automatic

runners fitness fit

Open up Google Fit and it will automatically track the key activities of walking, cycling and running.

That means you don’t need to press go every time you leave the house.

Just keep the app running and your device will do the rest.

Once you’ve been out and about, it’ll deliver graphs and details on the distance you’ve covered, with the added ability to set fitness goals depending on how healthy you are.

3 It plays nice with other apps too

runkeeper android

A big draw with Google Fit is its ability to work in conjunction with other fitness apps.

At launch, Withings, Strava, Runkeeper, Runtastic and Noom Coach all plug into the app, allowing you to see all your fitness data in one place rather than having to check on countless apps.

This is all about using Google’s own Fit SDK. Third-party developers can now access this and set to work on new apps, which can dovetail with Google Fit.

Much like Apple’s HealthKit, this should make tracking your fitness goals much easier.

There’s one snag, though: Google says partner apps haven’t started working yet and has advised us to ‘hang tight’.

4 It works across devices

Google Fit isn’t just a smartphone and tablet tool.

It works with Google’s growing range of Android Wear watches, so you can see how you’re getting on by checking data on your wrist.

What’s more, there’s a dedicated web page for you to see all of your health data, so you can drill down and get to grips with your fitness while skiving from work.

5 It’s out now

google fit logo

You can download Google Fit right now from Google Play.

The interface is basic, but easy to get to grips with and while those third-party apps aren’t quite working yet, there’s plenty to be getting on with.

The question is, can it match up to Apple’s ace Health app?

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