The distance is consistently slightly off for my trainings

Modified on Tue, 20 Feb 2024 at 09:53 AM

Equilab determines the distance by using a continuous GPS feed from your device while riding. It then measures the total length of the path you took based on the GPS signal. Sometimes, the distances tracked will not perfectly match those stated on trail markers, maps, or other apps.

It is shorter/longer than other tracking apps

areThe raw locations that get reported from your phone's GPS often include some data points that is inaccurate (i.e., not on the path you rode). For this reason, it is necessary that apps such as Equilab (or others that track routes) need to filter away these inaccurate data points before presenting the 'final' tracked path. The specific algorithms used to determine which data points are filtered out and how much 'smoothing' occurs varies between the apps. Each app aims to make its tracking as accurate as possible, though they can sometimes vary by up to 15%.

Some of the primary contributing factors that explain why Equilab may vary from other apps include the following:

  • How much time you spend standing still (Equilab tries to remove all these data points, while other apps keep them)
  • You are indoors (Equilab tries to only include accurate GPS signals when it is being disrupted by a roof)
  • How much 'smoothing' occurs to the path (Equilab aims for smoother paths than most other apps). 

To the last point on this list regarding how 'smooth' your path is, a slightly more complex geometric problem called the coastline paradox is relevant. You can see an image illustrating the 'smoothing' on this webpage, by comparing the blue line (smoothed segment) to the orange line (raw data).

If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact us at We're always here to help.

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