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When recording an activity using OS Maps, if you lose GPS signal and then later regain signal, a straight line is plotted between these points.

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There's a variety of factors that can cause the loss of GPS signal when recording an activity such as:

  • GPS drift can be caused by environmental factors such as mountainous landscapes or dense forest
  • GPS bounce can be caused by "urban canyons" such as cities, where large buildings can intefere with GPS signal
  • A weak GPS signal can be caused by obstructions to your phone such as keeping your phone in the bottom of a bag, or attempting to record an activity indoors
  • Specific phone settings such as battery saver mode, out of date software, or inaccurate GPS chips used in certain phones can also cause bad GPS data
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There are a number of steps you can try to follow to help prevent signal loss, or improve overall signal.

To prevent GPS signal issues:

  • Where possible avoid environments which could affect signal such as dense forests, canyons and heavily urbanised areas.
  • Reduce or remove anything that may be obstructing the phone's signal by removing from a bag or not recording activities whilst indoors

To try and improve GPS signal:

  • Check location services are enabled on your phone
  • Try turning your phone on/off again if no GPS signal is present before starting an activity
  • Try disabling & enabling GPS data
  • Where possible, avoid using battery saver mode
  • Make sure OS Maps has access to your phone's location by going to your phone's settings, selecting OS Maps, and enabling location permissions
  • Make sure your phone is updated to the latest available software in system settings
  • Check that the latest version of OS Maps is installed by updating from the app store

As there are a wide variety of different phones and wearable devices, we'd also recommended reviewing the manufacturer's documentation on how to improve GPS data for specific devices.

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The 'My Activities' feature is designed to make it as easy as possible to keep track of how far you’ve travelled across your activities in OS Maps. 

You can find your 'Activity History' in the OS Maps mobile app, by navigating to the main menu (☰ symbol, top left corner of the screen) and select 'My Activities'. On OS Maps web, head to the main menu (☰) and select 'Activities'.

Here you can see your total distance travelled and under 'Activity history' you can view the individual activities recorded.

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With previous route recording, many OS Maps users recorded a route so that they could keep track of how far they went. To make this a more intuitive process, we have updated the functionality to offer a true activity recorder.

For users who still want to create a route from activities they have recorded, we've kept this functionality but made it optional after recording. 

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Activities are private to you, they are a log of the different activities you have completed and where you've been. Recording your activities allows you to see more useful information like moving time and average speed. You can keep track of the activities you've completed in the 'My Activities' section, found within the Main Menu.

Routes are something that you follow, and can be shared with others if made public. You can create routes by using the 'Create a route' functionality, uploading a GPX file or by turning one of your activities into a route.

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You can create a route from your recording by

  • Navigate to main menu (☰ symbol) in the top left corner of the screen
  • Select 'My activities' and then select the activity you wish to create a route from
  • Tap on the options (3 dots in a circle) in the top right hand corner of screen.
  • Tap on 'Turn into a new route'
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You can automatically record an activity by

  • Navigate to the main menu ( symbol) in the top left corner of the screen
  • Select 'Preferences'
  • Tap on 'Activity recording'
  • Select auto-recording on/off

Note - this feature is currently only available on the iOS version of OS Maps app and will be coming to Android soon

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Recorded Activities:

Recorded activities use GPS to track where you've been. Recorded activities have more accurate and detailed information about where you have been, how far you have travelled and the associated elevation profile. Based on this, recorded activities are able to show this information on the map and within the activity details.

Recorded activities are created by:

  • Tapping 'Record an activity' from the main menu, or
  • Following a route with automatic activity recording turned on in your preferences, which you can access from the main menu.

Manually Added Activities:

Manually added activities don't use GPS and simply add the route distance to your activity history.

Manuall added activities are created by:


  • Adding an activity via the '+' button on the 'My Activities' screen, or
  • If you had pre-existing activities, these are now classified as 'manually added'.


  • Select a route from your list of 'My Routes'
  • Click 'Add Activity' and then follow the on-screen instructions
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Manually added activities don't contain GPS data, therefore the detail is limited to what you can already see in your history list.

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Old activities aren't saved with the associated GPS data as these were created before that functionality was introduced into the app. Any activity without this data is now classed as 'manually added'.

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Your activity history is linked to your account, not the device you use to record them. Once you have finished and saved, or added an activity it will save to your account and can be accessed by logging into your account on any mobile device.

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