Sleep tracking — I’m still not sure what’s actually in it for me, but it sure seems to me that what I can actually learn from monitoring my sleep might be even less useful than that analytical geometry class way back in high school. Still, personal data like this is fascinating — especially when it can be done with as little friction as possible.
One app that I can vouch for is Sleep Cycle (by Northcube), which functions primarily as an alarm clock that eases you into consciousness by “analyzing” your sleep, triggering gently and gradually at your lightest sleep state. It works brilliantly at this and as it happens, at its secondary function as a sleep tracker, offering you a daily analysis of the quality of your sleep which the app then uses to provide a number of fun statistics like sleep quality affected by location, the moon, air pressure, activity level, and more. Sleep Cycle is easy to use (put it under your pillow or on the nightstand next to you) and seems to be largely accurate — I’m a definite fan.
App number two in this field, a new one to me, is AutoSleep (by Tantsissa). Spied at MacStories, my interest was piqued by the app’s elevator pitch: “automatically track your sleep from your Apple Watch.” To good to be true? Well actually, no — AutoSleep seems to work as advertised, requiring no app on the watch, and no input from the user. Just leave your watch on when you go to bed, wake up, and enjoy the data. AutoSleep, unfortunately, doesn’t provide the sort of analysis that Sleep Cycle does, but as I said above, I’ve no idea what good this data actually does me anyway. Still, the information the app does offer is presented nicely enough, and at $1.99 it’s nearly impossible to beat AutoSleep’s friction-free experience — as with Sleep Cycle, I am once again, a definite fan.