How do Google Fit Track Steps? Ultimate Guide!

Google Fit is a free activity tracking app that tracks various activities such as your heart rate, walking, running, biking, and swimming. Unlike other fitness tracking apps, it does not require a Google Fit-compatible smartwatch or fitness tracker to track your steps or other activities.

How do Google Fit Track Steps

If you wonder how Google Fit tracks steps, then you are at the right place. In this blog post, I will answer how do Google tracks steps and also how to troubleshoot if your steps are not being tracked.

Also Read: 5 Best Fitbit Charge 5 Clock Faces in 2022

How Does Google Fit help you stay healthy?

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) and American Heart Association (AHA), a healthy adult should walk for at least 150 minutes or do at least 75 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week. Google Fit is designed in such as way that you can set targets and see your progress towards these goals.

When you use Google Fit, it awards you Move Points and Heart Points based on your activities and heart rate. The more active you are, the more points you get. The app also allows you to challenge your friends and family to see who can rack up the most points. This is an excellent way to motivate you to stay more active and healthy.

Now let us take a closer look into what is Move Points and Heart Points in Google Fit.

Google Fit Heart Points vs. Move Minutes?

Google Fit awards heart points for every activity that increases your heart rate. This means that if you do high-intensity workouts, you will get more heart points than low-intensity workouts. For example, if you run, you will get two heart points per minute, while you will get only one heart point if you do brisk walking.

On the other hand, Google Fit awards move minutes for all your movements, and it is not based on the intensity of your activities. So, whether you are walking, running, or swimming, you will get one more minute for each minute of your activity. If you have a sedentary lifestyle, Google Fit will also award you move minutes for light activities such as standing up or taking the stairs.

To enjoy this feature, you do not need to have a smartwatch, sedentary reminder, or a fitness tracker. It is good news for anyone who wants to stay active even without an expensive Google Fit-compatible smartwatch.

How do Google Fit Track Steps?

It is very important to understand how Google Fit tracks your various activities. So Google Fit uses gathers your activities mainly in two ways. Let us check!

Google Fit Activity Tracking via your Smartphone

Google Fit can track your activities with the help of your smartphone sensors. For this, simply download the Google Fit app to your smartphone from Apple Store or Android Store. Then set up the app by creating a user profile by entering your age, weight, and height. Plus, you also need to give necessary permission to the app to access your phone’s sensors.

Now the app is ready to track your activities. The app will detect it whenever you move with the help of your phone’s built-in sensors such as GPS, gyroscope, and accelerometer. The GPS sensor will be used to track your outdoor activities, such as walking and running.

With that said, the accuracy of your activities depends on the quality of your phone’s sensors. So, the accuracy will be high if you have an advanced smartphone, and I would say it will be just as accurate as using it with a Google Fit-compatible smartwatch or fitness tracker.

However, when you use Google Fit with your android smartphone, it will not track your heart rate or sleep. On the other hand, if you are using an iPhone, you can measure your heart rate with the help of the phone’s camera.

Google Fit Activity Tracking via your Smartwatch

If you have a Google Fit-compatible smartwatch, you can use it to track your activities. The smartwatch sensors detect and transmit the activity data to the Google Fit App. The Google Fit app then permanently logs and records all your activities and other health data on its servers. You can see the summary of your activities on the Google Fit app.

The benefit of using a smartwatch with Google Fit is that the sensors used in smartwatches are more accurate than a smartphone. So you will get more accurate tracking results. Smartwatches can also track your health metrics such as heart rate, blood oxygen, stress level, sleep, and many more.

If you are just starting and do not want to spend money on a smartwatch, we suggest you use your smartphone to track your steps and other activities. Google Fit tracks more than 100+ activities currently without any smartwatch. On top of that, the Google Fit app is free and easy to use.

Does Google Fit Automatically track your activities?

Google Fit automatically tracks many activities, including walking, running, biking, and swimming. You can view these activities in the app by going to the “Activity History” tab.

However, some activities Google Fit does not automatically track, such as weightlifting, yoga, swimming, etc. 

To start tracking an activity:

1. Open the Google Fit App

2. Tap on the “+” sign on the bottom right-hand side

3. Select “Track Workout.”

4. From the list, choose the activity you want to track and tap on “Start.”

5. When you’re finished with the activity, tap on “Pause” and then “Stop.”

Your workout will then be saved in the “Activity History” tab for you to view later.

How Accurate is Google Fit Steps Tracking?

As I mentioned, the accuracy of Google Fit depends on the type of device that you’re using. If you’re using a smartphone, the accuracy will depend on your phone’s sensors. 

If you have a brand-new phone, you can expect Google Fit to be accurate within +/- 5%. You can further increase the accuracy by turning on the GPS while walking or running.

Alternatively, you can use an app like Sensor Test to check the accuracy of your smartphone. This app will show you how accurate your phone’s accelerometer is.

On the other hand, if you use a Google Fit-compatible wearable device, such as a smartwatch or fitness tracker, the accuracy will be much better since these devices have more advanced sensors for tracking your various activities. 

Currently, Google Fit supports Wear OS Smartwatches only. The Samsung Galaxy Watch 5, Galaxy Watch 4, TicWatch Pro 3 Ultra GPS, Fossil Gen. 6, etc., are popular Wear OS smartwatches with Google Fit as the default fitness tracking app.

Google Fit Not Tracking Steps: How to Fix it?

While the Google Fit app is an excellent tool for tracking your fitness, some users have complained that it doesn’t track their activities properly. If you also face such issues, ensure you have given the necessary permissions to Google Fit.

Here is an easy guide on how to give permissions to Google Fit on Android and iOS devices. If you have already done this, and it is still not tracking your steps, refresh the app by tapping on the “Sync” button, which you can locate in the “Journal.”

For Android Smartphones:

  • On your phone, and then the Settings app.
  • Access the App list by tapping on “App.”
  • Locate “Google Fit” from the App list and tap on it.
  • Now, tap on the “Permissions” and give access to “Location and Physical Activity.”
    Google Fit Location Settings

If you are using an iOS device, follow the steps to provide all necessary permissions to Google Fit.

  • On your iPhone, open the “Settings” app.
  • Tap on “Profile.”
  • Now tap on “Gear Icon” next to your profile pic.
  • Tap on “Track your activities with Health” from the newly opened page.
  • Toggle on “Connect Google Fit with Health.”
  • Allow Google Fit to Access activities that you want to share.
  • Again, go to “Settings” and tap on “Google Fit.”
  • Tap the Google Fit
  • Allow “Background App Refresh” by toggling it on.

These are some common problems and troubleshooting that you can follow if Google Fit is not tracking steps.

These are some of the additional steps that you can take to make sure that Google Fit is accurately tracking your activities:

1. Check for update

Always make sure that your Google Fit app is up to date. If an app update is available, update it to the latest version. The latest version might have some bug fixes to help resolve the issue.

2. Restart your Smartphone and Smartwatch

If you still do not see your steps being tracked in Google Fit, restart your phone and smartwatch. This will refresh the Google Fit app and may help resolve the issue.

3. Clear App Cache

Clearing the app cache will delete temporary files and data related to the app. This might help fix the problem if a corrupt cache file causes it.

It is easy to clear the app cache on Android. Just follow the steps below:

  • On your phone, open the Settings app.
  • Access the App list by tapping on “App.”
  • Locate “Google Fit” and tap on it.
  • Now, tap on “Storage.”
  • Tap on “Clear Cache.”

4. Turn on the location Tracking Feature

Google Fit uses GPS to track your steps. If you have not given the app permission to access your location, it will not be able to track your steps correctly.

Follow these simple steps to enable location tracking in Google Fit.

  • On your phone, open the Settings app.
  • Access the App list by tapping on “App.”
  • Locate the Google Fit and tap on it
  • Now tap on “Location.”
  • Give location permission on the newly opened page.
  • Done!

5. Keep Google Fit Open on your Smartphone

The Google Fit app needs to be open in the background to keep track of your activities. So, make sure it is open on your smartphone during your workouts.

However, it is not necessary if you are using a smartwatch with Google Fit. In this case, the watch tracks and stores data and transmits it to the app when it is opened. Modern smartwatches generally store two days of data, so you will not lose your step count even if you forget to sync.

6. Turn off Battery optimisation for Google Fit.

Battery optimisation helps smartphones to save battery by limiting the background activities of the apps. But this optimisation feature may interfere with Google Fit and prevent it from working correctly.

  • To fix this, you must turn off Google Fit’s battery optimisation. Here’s how:
  • On your phone, open the Settings app.
  • Tap on “Battery.”
  • Now tap on “Optimise Battery Usage.”
  • From the App list, locate Google Fit.
  • Turn off battery optimisation for Google Fit by toggling it off.
    Battery Optimisation

Depending on your smartphone model, the settings may be different. If this is the case, just use the search function in the Settings app to find “Battery Optimisation.

7. Check your phone’s sensors

If you are using Google Fit along with your phone, make sure that all the sensors on your phone are working correctly. The accuracy of your step count depends on the sensors on your phone. So, if any of the sensors are not working correctly, it may result in an inaccurate step count.

8. Uninstall and Re-install Google Fit

If Google Fit is still not tracking steps, try uninstalling and re-installing the Google Fit app. This will delete all the data related to the app from your phone. So, make sure to back up your data before doing this.

Once you have re-installed the app, log in with your account and give all the necessary permissions. Now, check if the problem is fixed.

How does Google Fit calculate Heart Points?

Google Fit uses your activities and heart rate to use your data to estimate your heart points for the day. Your fitness level is also taken into account when calculating these numbers.

Does Google Fit double-count steps?

No. Even if you use a smartphone and smartwatch together, Google Fit does not double count your steps from your app and smartwatch. With the help of its sensors and algorithms, Google Fit can review and record these steps accurately without any error or double counting.

Does Google Fit track steps offline?

Yes. Google Fit can track your activities offline without connecting to the internet. This is possible because your phone’s sensors detect and record your movement and transfer it to the Google Fit servers when connected to the internet.

Does Google Fit track steps on the treadmill?

Yes. Google Fit tracks your steps on the treadmill. Make sure you have your phone or smartwatch with you while walking or running on the treadmill, and the app will automatically detect and record your steps.

Also, if you have a connected treadmill, your steps will be automatically synced and recorded in Google Fit. You also get an option to enter your treadmill workouts in the app manually.


Google Fit is one of my best fitness tracking tools. I started with just my phone, but now I have many smartwatches too. Features like move points and heart points help you stay active, and this leads to a healthier lifestyle.

I hope that now you know How do Google Fit Track Steps your step and other activities. What are you waiting for? Get out there and start exploring to reach your fitness goals!

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