Adventure Sync can now be activated to track your steps (like a pedometer) while your phone is locked. Will Pokemon GO still track distance (with GPS) when the phone is unlocked and Pokemon GO running?

I do a bit of bike riding and do not want to lose out on the current (GPS) distance system. If both tracking systems work, Adventure Sync would be nice to be able to also count my steps around the office and house.

  • 1
    Please clarify or edit your question to specify which app you are referring to.
    – Jerry
    Nov 9, 2018 at 12:44
  • 2
    @Jerry Adventure Sync isn't a third party app. It is a new feature within Pokemon Go. Is that what you're referring to? Nov 9, 2018 at 14:51
  • @Wondercricket Yes, I am referring to the new feature in Pokemon-Go.
    – Trisped
    Nov 9, 2018 at 17:05
  • Well, the description of Adventure Sync explicitly says the Pokemon GO app is not open and works with Apple Health and Google Fit, but the question asks about "when the phone is unlocked with the app up?" Also, in the second paragraph, what is meant by both?
    – Jerry
    Nov 10, 2018 at 11:40
  • @Jerry The question is intended to be independent of the 3rd party apps, asking if Pokemon Go will still track distance when the app is open. In the second paragraph, both refers to both the old style of distance tracking in Pokemon Go and the new style which does not require the app to be open.
    – Trisped
    Nov 12, 2018 at 18:30

2 Answers 2


Yes, it will still track your progress.

Admittedly, I know this out of ignorance of how the app actually worked to begin with. I was unsure as to how the app tracked the progress of my Pokémon Go progress, so I continued to leave the app open as I walked, and I eventually received an alert - "You have walked 5km", and received 20 Pokeballs upon collection.

The idea of the app is that you don't need to keep the app open, but in doing so, you won't be able to visit Pokestops, or gyms, or catch Pokémon with the app closed - it is used purely to help collect candies for your Buddy, and hatch eggs.

  • Hi Ben, this does not answer the question, since when the app was open you were still walking, so it might have been tracking your steps instead of the distance you traveled. To run a test, you would need to ride a bike with the app open and see if it is still tracking distance or if it only tracks steps.
    – Trisped
    Nov 9, 2018 at 17:08
  • 1
    Pokemon Go does not track "steps". It uses Google Maps to track your movement and speed, when the app is open. You can now choose sync it with Adventure Sync, which does the same thing when it is closed. There is no "step" tracking in either of these apps.
    – Ben
    Nov 10, 2018 at 0:02
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    "Adventure Sync seems to work by tapping into your phone's on-board fitness-tracking software, either Apple's Health or Google Fit, then using the step data your phone tracks and translating it into the game." https://www.gamespot.com/articles/pokemon-go-finally-stops-destroying-your-battery-w/1100-6463026/
    – Trisped
    Nov 10, 2018 at 0:29
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    @Trisped Google Fit does track steps (I have used it for several years), as well as GPS. It will equally track both walking on a treadmill (steps) and activities like cycling or kayaking (GPS). Adventure Sync is just picking up data from Google Fit, so it should work with both.
    – Allison C
    Nov 12, 2018 at 14:07
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    When you enable Adventure Sync it states "Let Pokemon GO count your steps while the game is closed to help incubate your eggs and find more candy!"
    – Trisped
    Nov 16, 2018 at 5:25

Yes, Adventure Sync also tracks distance.

I tested by locking the phone and riding my bike. The distance ridden did not show up immediately, but it did show up in the app.

If you are using Android, be sure to have Google Fit installed and configured. Note: If you open the app, distance is tracked as normal (without the refresh lag).

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