Are people using sleep tracking apps and happy with them?

Discussion in 'Apple Watch Apps' started by bob24, Dec 1, 2016.

  1. bob24 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2012
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland
    #1
    I am considering getting an Apple Watch, and sleep tracking would be one use case which could convince me to go for it as I sometimes have sleep disorder and would like to have some data on how long I sleep and how often I wake-up.

    Since Apple are not providing this natively, are some people here using third party apps and are you happy with them?

    In particular I am wondering:
    - Is the data captured accurate? (i.e. does the app accurately and automatically detect if you wake-up in the middle of the night and fall asleep again?)
    - does it have a significant impact on battery life?
    - Do you feel the watch is uncomfortable to wear while sleeping?
    - Is the data fully flowing through HealthKit? (so that if apple start supporting this native in the future historical data will already be available alongside with data captured by Apple)
    - Is there a good way to visualise the data one the phone? (the Apple Health app seems quite basic to view data)

    Thanks a lot!
     
  2. Dingster101 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2015
    #2
    Does it specifically have to be an AW? Fit bit might be a better option.
     
  3. bob24, Dec 1, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2016

    bob24 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Dublin, Ireland
    #3
    Sleep tracking wouldn't be the sole (or even the main) purpose, rather a very nice tingh to have. Also as much as possible I prefer to limit the number of ecosystems I am spreading my data across and as a company I expect Apple to be much more respectful of the privacy of health data than fitbit is. If I decide to get sleep tracking elsewhere it will probably be Withings as I already have some of their devices and while I don't automatically trust them more than fitbit their servers are located in the UE which means better privacy laws and my data won't be sent to the US.
     
  4. SMonroe macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 12, 2016
    #4
    I used to sleep with my Fitbit Surge and used its vibration as my wake up alarm, as well as measuring my sleep. It worked very well.

    I wanted that same functionality when I switched to the AW. I'm now using Sleep Watch. I paid for it, so this is not an advertisement. I'm very happy with it, it seems as accurate as the Surge and I don't have to "turn on" the app, it senses when you're sleeping and when you wake. If the times are wrong, you can adjust them and it supposedly learns from it.

    No noticeable effect on the battery. I was used to sleeping with the watch, so that didn't bother me. It does provide info to Health.

    My only complaint is that I thought this feature should be inherent to the iOS, not a 3rd party app.
     
  5. cmbauer macrumors regular

    cmbauer

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2016
    #5

    I also bought SleepWatch and love it. Have you ever had a night where it says you only had 4 hours of sleep? If I get up in the middle of the night and go to the bathroom it then thinks I was up and starts the sleep tracking over. That kinda bothers me, but can see why it does it
     
  6. bob24 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2012
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland
    #6
    Thanks for that feedback - and yes agree this should be a native feature (though I think Apple's problem is that until recently battery life was not sufficient to officially tell people they can use the watch day and night, and even now while it is possible it would be more comfortable if it could last a few more days).
    --- Post Merged, Dec 1, 2016 ---
    So if I get you, if you sleep for 3 hours, get up for a few minutes, and then go back to bed and sleep for another 4 hours - the next day it will tell you you only slept 4 hours and completely ignore the first part of the night?

    Also another question: does it both know when you go to bed and when you actually fall asleep (it sometimes take some time for me to fall asleep and I would be curious to know exactly how long).
     
  7. cmbauer macrumors regular

    cmbauer

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2016
    #7
    That is correct. Some nights it will only state I slept 4 hours. Say I go to bed at 10 and then get up at 1 to bathroom then go back to sleep from 1 - 4 it will say I slept 3 hours.

    This doesnt happen all the time.

    I update to newest betas on watch and phone all the time, so maybe that is part of the issue?

    But it does track well for when I do fall asleep at night, that is impressive
     
  8. SMonroe macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 12, 2016
    #8
    Mine would say - slept from 1-4 and slept from say 4:10 to 8, for example. There is a way to adjust or fix the times.

    Some nights I was sedentary watching TV for an hour or so before bed and it thought I was sleeping. I'd adjust those.
     
  9. Bbqthis macrumors 6502a

    Bbqthis

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2015
    Location:
    Bay Area, CA
    #9
    Am using sleep++: the data is as accurate as any other sleep tracker device I've used, drains 10-15% of battery during a full night's sleep (recharge while in shower and getting dressed), is comfortable to wear (I wear a nylon bracelet to bed), is syncing with HealthKit, and has an ok expanded view in the iPhone app.
     
  10. pmccr8 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2016
    Location:
    Carlsbad, CA
    #10
    I started out using sleep++ and I also really like their iPhone app layout. I went and purchased sleepwatch because I like that it detects when I'm asleep automatically(like my Jawbone Up did). But I wish their iPhone app was more detailed.

    Battery drain for either is minimal. Maybe 10%.

    I have the Nike+ AW, so it's very comfortable to sleep with because of the perforated band.
     
  11. AppleLuvver macrumors member

    AppleLuvver

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    Oct 3, 2012
    Location:
    U.S.
    #11
    I use the Pillow app and really like it. I feel that the data is very accurate- it does detect when I am awake and when I go back to sleep. It uses approximately 10% battery life for approx. 8 hours of sleep. I don't find the watch uncomfortable to sleep with. I charge it when I'm in the shower in the morning and it's up to 100% again for work. I'm not sure about the data going through heath kit because I don't use that. The app syncs between your watch and your phone; you sync the data from your watch to your phone (when you wake up and stop the app, you can hard press to sync to phone), and you can easily see your nightly report on the watch AND on the phone app- it shows what percentage of the night you were awake, in REM, Light sleep, and Deep sleep. It shows total time in bed, as well as total time asleep and sleep quality. I've been pretty impressed with it actually. Hope that helps!
     
  12. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    #12
    When I tried the Pillow app, it seemed that in order to track sleep, I had to start the phone app, THEN start the watch app. Is this correct, or did I miss something? With Sleep++, I just have to start the app on the watch.

    Also, Sleep++ is pretty good about dealing with when you wake up in the middle of night and go to the bathroom. If the interruption is long enough, it'll create two Sleep entries in the Health data. So if you got up at 3, you'd see one sleep session for 12-3, and another for 3:15-7, let's say. You do have to manually tell it when you go to bed and when you wake up. But it detects when you actually fell asleep, and it creates an "in bed" entry and "asleep" entry in the Health app.
     
  13. AppleLuvver macrumors member

    AppleLuvver

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    Oct 3, 2012
    Location:
    U.S.
    #13
    Night Spring I do not have to open the phone app to track. I just keep Pillow in the dock on my AW and start it from there when I get into bed. I do notice that my phone needs to be fairly close (in the same room) in order for the sync to show up in my app when I use force touch- but u can sync at any time. I usually do it once I get to work and my phone is right there- then look at the phone app for my sleep data.
     
  14. Bob190 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 21, 2015
    #14
    I use HeartWatch. It's sleep tracking is pretty basic, but it gives me what I need. As a runner/triathlete, I am more interested in my resting/sleeping heart rate than movement to gauge overtraining, poor recovery etc. It does show you movement above baseline, then a Sleep Recharge score which I find pretty reliable. The green lines at the top indicate your movements, I woke up at 10:30 and 2:15 as you can see by the green lines at the top.

    Overall, it is a great app.

    Also, I don't know I am even wearing the AW at night, and mine only loses about 7% batter during the night. I have a Series 2.

    IMG_1119[1].PNG
     
  15. PurpleSookie macrumors member

    PurpleSookie

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    Oct 14, 2016
    Location:
    Australia
    #15
    I use Sleepwatch and I'm happy with it.

    The only issue I have with wearing my watch at night is remembering to turn off raise to wake. I wish it would automatically turn off when my do not disturb activates or if there was a toggle switch for easier accesss to turn it off, drilling down through the settings is a pain.
     
  16. bob24 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Sep 25, 2012
    Location:
    Dublin, Ireland
    #16
    Out of couriosity, do you turn it off to save battery or is it because the screen wakes you up?
     
  17. tromboneaholic macrumors 65816

    tromboneaholic

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    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Clearwater, FL
    #17
    Tried Pillow. While it seemed accurate enough, it would often freeze in the morning when analyzing the data. Other times it just wouldn't transfer the data to the phone. Pillow support was not interested in helping, so I got a refund from Apple on the in app purchase that unlocked some features of the app.
     
  18. PurpleSookie macrumors member

    PurpleSookie

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    Australia
    #18
    Battery is no problem, it shines in my partners eyes when I'm tossing and turning! Doesn't bother me.
     
  19. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    #19
    Thanks, I finally managed to figure out how to start the sleep tracking from the watch only. Turns out I was not seeing a button because I didn't realize I had to scroll down.

    I still find it a bit weird that I push "start" and then I get another "start" button I have to press.
     
  20. Restlesslegs macrumors member

    Restlesslegs

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2015
    #20
    Have bought an Apple Watch Nike a few weeks ago and use it for sleep tracking since day one.

    I bought "Pillow" and find it remarkably accurate. I'm a bad sleeper so I wake up quite a bit and it does track all that. Where it's struggling are phases when I lie in bed awake but don't move much - this sometimes is filed under "sleep", but i wouldn't know how "Pillow" could do a better job unless it starts staring at my eyes...

    Syncing works mostly but I had 2 sessions where I had to force sync. At the beginning I started the app on my iPhone and then also on my Watch, but I stopped doing this a while ago and now only start it directly on the Watch... I like how data is prepared both in the Watch app and the iPhone app, nice visual presentation... Data also shows up in Apple's Health app.

    Like others I find wearing the Nike band absolutely pleasant 22 hours a day - and weather here in Singapore is hot and humid.

    All in all I like the app and the idea of sleep tracking, for sure it's nothing scientific at this point but it's a good level of information, I can really recommend it.
     
  21. midloman macrumors regular

    midloman

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2010
    Location:
    Midllothian, VA
    #21
    I just downloaded Sleep Watch to try it out and I'm having a problem getting it to work.

    I went through all of the setup screens on my phone and enabled the requested access to the Health app.

    When I start the app on my watch (S2 with WatchOS 3.1), I see the message:

    "Setup Required"
    "Complete setup on iPhone to continue"
    "Force Touch to refresh".

    I forced touch, tapped Refresh, and I get the same error. Is that what I'll see until I track some sleep? How do I get past this?

    Thanks.
     
  22. luann54, Dec 1, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2016

    luann54 macrumors newbie

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    #22
     
  23. honglong1976 macrumors 6502a

    honglong1976

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #23
    No, they all suck! Sleep++ is probably the most accurate.

    Pebble was the same until they included native sleep tracking. Apple Watch will be the same.
    --- Post Merged, Dec 2, 2016 ---
    I am using a Fitbit Flex for now to track my sleep! Wish List: apple watch does sleep tracking natively! :)
     
  24. TxWatch macrumors 6502

    TxWatch

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2015
    Location:
    Texas
    #24
    I just bought the HeartWatch App and it does a great job of sleep tracking. It tracks your restlessness over your basal energy and includes a sleep recharge estimate to show the quality of your sleep each night. It also has a comprehensive set of heart tracking metrics that use the data collected in the Apple Health and Activity Apps. It has heart rate complications and works well in the Dock.

    I think I might be becoming a heart rate junkie! :D

    The App tracks your sleeping heart rate, your waking heart rate, your regular heart rate throughout the day and your Workout heart rate. The values are kept in separate buckets, so you can analyze each type on its own merits. You can use your own sleep tracker and Workout Apps or the ones built-in. It is hard to believe all heart rate information it provides on your phone and Watch for only $2.99. :cool:
     
  25. pbird macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2015
    #25
    I have my Apple watch now for a week and I agree heartwatch is a great dashboard app not only for heart rate but for most other metrics as well. i actually prefer it over the Fitbit app.
     

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