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Strava vs Runkeeper For Cycling?

There are many cycling apps on the market, but Strava and Runkeeper are two of the most popular. They offer a combination of navigational, fitness, and performance tracking features to athletes of all levels that include heart rate, live tracking, ride routes, distance, calories burned, leaderboard challenges, and more to cyclists around the world. Also, they allow you to share your personal best with an online social community.

Both have their pros and cons, so which one is right for you? Here’s a comparison of Strava vs Runkeeper to help you decide.

Strava Vs Runkeeper Comparison:


Strava and Runkeeper are both free apps that you can download on your phone. However, there are in-app purchases for the premium versions of the apps that include training plans, expert guidelines, and advanced data about your workouts.

You can upgrade to Strava Summit for $5.00 / £5.99 / (about AU$7) per month and to Runkeeper Go for $9.99 (about £8 / AU$15).

So, you will have to spend almost double on the Runkeeper which is ridiculously high if you are not into triathlon.


Most premium watches have an ‘Auto-pause’ feature these days, but it was first introduced and popularized by third-party apps like Strava, Runkeeper, and more.

Can you imagine, Apple released the auto-pause as a cool new feature for cyclists in the latest firmware update for WatchOS8? It should have been there in the late Apple Watch Series 4 or even 5, as both these watches are fully equipped with an accelerometer, gyroscope, and most importantly, a built-in GPS.

Runkeeper and Strava both provide ‘Auto-Pause’ settings so you won’t corrupt your workout data while taking a short break while cycling.

Social Community:

One of the key reasons behind Strava’s popularity among cyclists is the fact that it has the largest social community of cyclists. So you will find everyone from your family, friends, neighbors to seasoned pros like Alex Dowsett and Michal Kwiatkowski logging their workouts.

Just like other social media platforms, Strava provides a place for athletes to share their workouts, route data, and the ability to create and join clubs similar to Facebook groups. You can comment or like on people’s profiles to appreciate their effort.

RunKeeper also has social network capabilities but in comparison to Strava, the cycling community on the app is minuscule.


Strava has a heatmap feature that allows you to find the most popular routes for cycling. In fact, you can sort by all kinds of other activities like running, skiing, kitesurfing and more.

Runkeeper has no such feature to offer.

GPS feature:

Though both these apps rely on the built-in GPS sensor of the smartwatch, smartphone, or bike computer, Strava has a slight edge in guessing the routes accurately.

Safety Features:

If you have Strava’s premium version, you can share your live location with friends and family members by enabling the Strava Beacon feature.

Beacon creates a unique URL that you can share with your safety contacts. They can use this to see where you are in real-time. Depending on cell service, your location should update about every 15 seconds.

Runkeeper, on the other hand, offers no such feature.

Battery Drain:

The Strava app is designed so to be the most battery efficient which is fantastic for extended rides. Strava claims that its app will drain less than 5% of your watch’s battery while cycling for an hour.

Runkeeper, on the other hand, relies predominantly on GPS and will therefore drain a lot more battery while cycling for an hour or two.

Train with Competition:

Strava’s Live Segments allow you to compete with other members for the best time on Strava-approved segments. Also, there are challenge badges that motivate you to take cycling to the next level.

Runkeeper, on the other hand, doesn’t have such a feature.


Both apps integrate seamlessly with native health and workout apps on smartwatches or smartphones. When compared, Strava has the upper hand here with its wide coverage that includes Apple Health, Samsung Health, Google Fit, Garmin Connect, and more.

Audio Announcements:

Runkeeper offers audio announcements for free, whereas a similar feature is offered by Strava but it is only for runners.


Even though both Strava and Runkeeper can track rides, Strava seems to be a slight favorite among cyclists.

Some of the key benefits that Strava has over Runkeeper include its social networking capabilities, heatmap feature, GPS accuracy, live location sharing, and battery efficiency. Moreover, Strava Premium costs you half the price of Runkeeper Pro.