IT TURNS OUT that your fitness tracker may be sabotaging you. If you ran the London Marathon with a Huawei Watch 2 Sport, for example, it wouldn't be entirely surprising if you found the whole ordeal even harder than expected.
Ahead of the big day, Which tested 118 fitness trackers on a calibrated treadmill to measure their accuracy. The Huawei Watch 2 Sport overestimated distance covered by 28 per cent, meaning you'd be some seven miles short of the finish line when the watch said it was time to stop.
Most of the wearables named and shamed by the company had the opposite problem, however. The Garmin Vivosmart 4, for example hit the arbitrary 26.2 mile mark when it had actually been used for 37 miles.
Also on Which's wall of shame: the Samsung Gear S2 (36.2 miles), the Misfit Ray (34.6 miles), the Xiaomi Amazfit Bip (34 miles), the Fitbit Zip (30.9 miles), the Polar A370 (30.9 miles), and the Apple Watch Series 3 (22.8 miles).
To be entirely fair to Misfit, Fitbit, Polar and Garmin, none of the shamed devices have built-in GPS, leaving them to piggyback off smartphones or, worse, guess based on step count. Bluntly, we doubt anybody is doing serious marathon training using the Tamagotchi-like, discontinued, £50 Fitbit Zip. Likewise, Garmin's Vivosmart 4 would be an odd choice - especially given Which gave the company's GPS-packed Vivoactive 3 a 100% accuracy rating.
"Running a marathon is no mean feat, so runners who are putting in the months of training beforehand will want to know their fitness tracker is trustworthy, and not jeopardising their finish times," said Natalie Hitchins, Which's head of home products and services.
Sounds like a good excuse not to run a marathon to us, but if you really must honour a 2,500-year-old fable, then you may as well make sure you're doing it accurately. That said, if Pheidippides managed it without running shoes, you can probably do it without the latest Garmin. µ
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