Can't get a accurate step count

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by DdDr2, Jan 11, 2016.

  1. DdDr2 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2016
    #1
    ok well it's not even close. It's been about 3000 steps off a day since I recieved the watch. I'm comparing it to my Fitbit flex ( which I have used for 2 yrs and the step count updates in real time, so I can tell that it is counting my steps correctly). I've been wearing both since I got the watch.

    What can I do to increase the accuracy ? The weather is terrible here to do the calibration outside. I tried calibrating it on my treadmill in my basement ( I choose outdoor walk) but I'm not sure how much that helped. I walked down my hallway and it said I took 50 steps. Definitely not right. It's more like 15 steps.
    Also the watch doesn't reflect counts in real time, obviously. So how often does it update the step count ? Ever few minutes ? Even when I open the activity app, it takes several minutes to refresh, it seems.
    This watch is fun. I just wish it could come close to calculating my step count correctly.
     
  2. exxxviii macrumors 65816

    exxxviii

    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    #2
    Calibration only affects the internal stride length factors in the watch. Calibration does not do anything to increase step count accuracy.

    I honestly do not recall anyone writing about step count accuracy like yours. I have a Fitbit Zip, and my watch and FB are very close. Maybe you have a defective watch. It might be worth an Apple Genius visit.
     
  3. Blujelly macrumors 65816

    Blujelly

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2012
    Location:
    South East England
    #3
    Unfortunately I've not had this problem. At first my AW would be showing about 500-700 steps more than my iPhone, I think after 2 outdoor walks, and what I do for a job its calibrated on par with each other.

    That only took about 2 days if I'm honest.
     
  4. DdDr2 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2016
    #4
    So I noticed that in the Health app, the data source had my phone as first priority instead of my watch. I switched it. And it seemed to help a bit. Today my steps are off by 1000 ( my Apple Watch is reading 1000 less then my Fitbit. ). Does any one tho k calibrating it will help that margin ? Is it just par for the course, or should I still just bring it in to apple ?
    --- Post Merged, Jan 12, 2016 ---
    Also, does just keeping your phone with you while your moving ( with it not set to any " workout activity" help with the data ? Or do I need to be doing a "outdoor walk" for it to calibrate properly ? It's just too damn cold in Chicago for that with two young kids right now. Lol
     
  5. exxxviii macrumors 65816

    exxxviii

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    May 20, 2015
  6. DdDr2 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2016
    #6
    So what does it do ? I figured it helped calculate your stride length, which would help define your step count
     
  7. exxxviii macrumors 65816

    exxxviii

    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    #7
    Calibration calculates stride length based on step count and GPS distance. Step count is an input to calibration, not an output.
     
  8. CobraPA macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2011
    Location:
    Lansdale, PA, USA
    #8
    Just curious, how are you viewing step count? There is a panel in the activity app on the watch that seems pretty accurate for me (and I think it shows steps measured on the watch pretty quickly.) The iPhone Health app can show you steps with a blend of watch and iPhone for input. You can also drill down and look at the data to see which devices recorded your steps at any particular time. It's possible that steps are being counted by the watch or the phone, depending on which one you are carrying.

    Do you wear the watch in an unusual position or have an special way you carry the phone? They both use motion to estimate steps, so maybe there is something about how you carry one of them that contributes to the unusual step counts you are seeing.

    I'm not seeing a preference setting for watch or phone in the iPhone health app. On mine, using 9.2, I see iPhone and watch listed on the sources tab, but it doesn't seem to have any option to prefer one over the other. Where did you find that?
     
  9. Newtons Apple macrumors P6

    Newtons Apple

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    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #9
    I regularly use a Charge HR, AW and now a MS Band 2 and they all are pretty close at the end of a 3 mile walk on a predetermined path. Kinda make me wonder if your Flex is working ok.
     
  10. DdDr2 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2016
    #10
    I can watch my flex count my steps as I make them on my Fitbit app on my iPhone. It's maintaining the standard step count I've had for the last two years. I don't think it's the Fitbit. I wear my watch normally. I don't really carry my phone around with me. I'm a stay at home mom. So my phone is usually on the counter or in my purse.
    Last night, I tried turning my Bluetooth off my phone and then my watch updated my steps quicker. It seems like it's searching for my phone to update info off that. I wish it wouldn't cause my phone is rather stationary thru the day.

    For the preference setting. Go into the health app and choose the step screen off the dash board. It should bring you into a seperate screen where you can pick data sources. Then you should see your devices.
     

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  11. CobraPA macrumors 6502

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    Mar 12, 2011
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    Lansdale, PA, USA
    #11
    Ah, I see that... I didn't realize there was an edit button at the top of that screen before.

    That is kind of odd, because the step count on iPhone is already smart enough to use both watch and iPhone inputs, but it seems to compare time frames, and only include one of them if they record the same steps. By that, I mean that it will not just add up all the steps from both devices and give you double credit in the total. It will throw away some steps if it thinks the watch and phone where being used at the same time.
     
  12. Julien macrumors G3

    Julien

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #12
    Sounds like you may have a defective accelerometer. You could also try a total restore, then probably a Genius Bar appointment.
     
  13. DdDr2 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2016
    #13
    I just got off the phone with them and they said it can take a month to fully calibrate/match up to my movements. That's crazy ! I think I might take it to a Apple Store this weekend. Anyone know how they can determine if the accelerometer is defective ?
     
  14. Julien macrumors G3

    Julien

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #14
    That is incorrect info. There is NO SUCH thing as calibration for step count. It is simply algorithms that count certain accelerometer moments. The number of steps taken is absolutely the same for everyone so there is NOTHING to calibrate. The employee was confusing step counts with distance/pace/caloric burn calculations that do require calibration.
     
  15. DdDr2 thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 11, 2016
    #15
    Honestly, out of the two people I talk to at Apple, I get the feeling that they don't really know how this thing works.
     

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