Using Glympse for location sharing during SVVC group rides

There are a number of location services available today that let you share your location with others via your phone.  These services are especially helpful during group rides where occasionally, the group will get separated or you are picking up more riders along the way.

One of the best services I’ve found over the years for this is Glympse.  I’ve been using Glympse for years and it’s both simple and powerful at the same time.

Here’s a quick how-to for using Glympse to share your location while riding.

Getting Started

Installing the app

First things first, while  you can view almost any Glympse via a web browser, to get the most out of the service you should install the app.  The good news is Glympse is available for Apple, Android and Windows phones and is completely free.



You can also have a link sent directly to your phone to easily install the app from

Registering your phone number

For Glympse to work properly and security, it will use your phone number to identify you when you use the app.

If you simply want to view other’s Glympses and they are sharing publicly via a tag or social network, you don’t need the app at all.

Sharing Your Location

Share to a friend

My usual "On my way home" Glympse when bike commuting

My usual “On my way home” Glympse when bike commuting

The main way that I use Glympse is to let my wife track me when I’m out on a ride or commuting to and from work.

She can view my location from any browser or within the app if she has it installed.  She can see my speed (super fast always! :)) and if she can also see my destination if I’ve set one.

Sharing is limited to 4 hours max but you can share for as long or as little as you want below 4 hours.

Share to a public tag

The second way to share your location is to share to a public tag.

Sharing to a tag makes your location public to anyone who looks for anyone using the tag.

Public tags are a great way to share your location with a group of people you don’t necessarily know or have their contact information.

Consider tags temporary groupings that do not require you to share your contact details with strangers.

Share to a private group

The third sharing option is much more secure but requires more effort to setup.

To share to a private group, you first need to create or be invited to a private group.  You can only use an account with a verified phone number for a private group.

Once you are in a private group, you can share to that group just as you did to friends and tags, but your location will be private and only available to those in the group.

Sending location to multiple tags and private groups simultaneously

Sending location to multiple tags and private groups simultaneously

It’s important to note that you can share your location to multiple people, tags and/or groups all at the same time.

For instance, I can share my location with my wife, to the SVVCRoad public tag and to the SVVC Private group all at the same time.

This way my wife can find me, new riders without Glympse can track me via their phone web browser via the SVVCRoad public tag and SVVC members who have setup the private group can track me via the SVVC Private group.

Sharing to Social Networks

You can also share your location with Facebook or Twitter followers by linking your social network accounts in the Settings.

You should consider this type of sharing the MOST PUBLIC since it shares your location and advertises the specifics to anyone who can see your Facebook or Twitter feed.

If your social feeds are locked down tight, then this isn’t a concern.

Personally I created a Glympse specific Twitter account @WatchWesRide where it is locked down to just a handful of trusted friends and family to follow.

When I am out riding alone, I simply send my Glympse to that Twitter account so my loved ones know where I am.

Connect your social networks for quick sharing with friends

Connect your social networks for quick sharing with friends

Other Glympse Tricks


Set up favorites for quick repeatable Glympses

Set up favorites for quick repeatable Glympses

If you plan to use Glympse frequently with the same attributes, you should setup favorites to quickly share.

Favorites are especially helpful when you have already put on gloves and need to quickly send off your Glympse before you head out on your ride.

Long Rides

If you’re going out on a very long ride, you’ll want to consider an external battery pack or battery case for your phone.

While I’ve used Glympse for 5 hour rides without a battery pack, I prefer to have plenty of juice just in case.

In addition to an extended battery pack, you’ll need to remember to extend your ride sharing before it expires.  If you set it to the maximum of 4 hours, you’ll want to update the Glympse before that time.