4 Most Popular Sleep Monitors Reviewed
Enjoying a restful night is key to waking up feeling refreshed, energized, and ready for a productive day. From sleeping aids to yoga poses, people are trying all sorts of things to get better quality sleep. While some of us struggle to actually be able to power down, others simply have a hard time sleeping well or staying asleep. Over the past few years, sleep monitors have gained more and more popularity for their ability to assess sleep and wake cycles. They basically track your movements during sleep to assess which stage of sleep you’re in (awake, sleep, deep sleep, REM, etc) and some can wake you up during your lightest stage of sleep to ameliorate the process of waking up and to prevent grogginess. From the information that the trackers/monitors provides, you can begin to understand your sleeping pattern and perhaps find ways to improve it. If you’ve been considering getting yourself a sleep monitor then make sure to read the following reviews in order to make a good, well-informed decision.
- Jawbone UP3
What it can do: Despite the public chaos that the makers of Jawbone created (their big promises about making a waterproof gadget unfortunately failed), we do love the modern sleek design of this monitor. The bracelet basically detects your every move, which saves you the time from having to manually log your activities into the Up mobile app. Before bed, you can enable the sleep mode, which will allow the tracker to give you a detailed analysis of your sleep the next day. The makers claim that by detecting your heart rate, respiration rate, body temperature and galvanic skin response, the gadget will be able to differentiate between light sleep, deep sleep and REM. It also offers a ‘smart alarm’, which activates while you are in your lightest sleep period. Many people like the updates on the UP3 while others don’t really see what the big hype is all about. If you’re someone who’s very active and is concerned with fitness then a Jawbone bracelet could be the perfect option for you. If you’re only concerned with sleep tracking, however, then we recommend sticking with a device solely dedicated to analyzing your sleep.
Price & Value: $179.99. Definitely not cheap, but a lot of fitness freaks claim that the gadget is totally worth the money. If you enjoy having a stylish accessory that you can confidently show off to your friends then Jawbone UP3 is a good choice.
- FitBit Flex
What it can do: One of the many benefits that FitBit Flex offers is sleep tracking. You can use the website (fitbit.com) or the app to set your sleeping goal and set the monitor to the ‘sensitive sleep mode’. This will track every movement you make while you sleep, which can be helpful for people with sleeping disorders (sleepwalking, etc). The FitBit Flex determines the quality of your sleep primarily by detecting movement. Using the FitBit Flex during sleep and checking your sleep analysis can tell you what changes you need to make in order to achieve better sleep.
Price & Value: Around $80-90. You can buy the FitBit Flex online from Amazon.com, Adorama, GameSeek or in your local iStudio. While it is cheaper than the Jawbone UP3, the sleep analysis is not as detailed.
- Sleep Cycle
What it can do: Sleep Cycle is an iPhone sleep-tracking app that senses movement while you sleep (If you are an Android user then the equivalent would be the Sleep As Android app). You can set an alarm on the app, but it can decide to wake you up before the set time (within a 30 minute window) if you are in the lightest mode of sleep. To use the app, you place your phone in a corner of your bed and leave it there overnight. It will detect your movements and determine the stages of sleep you are in. The next morning, the app will describe the quality of your sleep as a percentage (i.e. 80%). Overtime, a graph will be formed and you can begin to see a pattern of your sleeping quality.
Price & Value: $0.99. This very simple and yet effective sleep-tracker could be a very worthwhile purchase. Basically, the app does two things: (1) determines the intensity of your sleep through motion detection and (2) it wakes you up while you are in your lightest mode of sleep. No sleep monitor available to us will be as accurate and sophisticated as the electrodes used by scientists to measure sleep, so it is perhaps best to keep things simple.
- Beddit Sleep Tracker
What it can do: The Beddit is a rectangular sensor strip that you attach on your bed to monitor sleep quality. Its features include: detailed sleep data (total sleep amount, time to fall asleep, sleep efficiency, time away from bed, etc), heart rate detector, respiration rate detector, restless sleep indicator, smart alarm. You connect the Beddit with your smartphone (iPhone and Android are both supported) via bluetooth. Every morning, the Beddit will provide an overall score of your sleep quality (i.e. 85). The makers of Beddit state that “Reach the Green Zone (on the scale) means you had a good night’s sleep”. Beddit aims to be a sleep tracker and wellness coach that can help you achieve better quality sleep.
Price & Value: $149. Beddit’s technology is quite sophisticated in that it can accurately track your sleep without having to be physically attached to your body. For those of you who don’t like high maintenance and can’t keep up with the hassle of monitoring fitness bands then Beddit could be a perfect match.
As you can see from the list, sleep monitors come in all shapes, sizes and prices. If you are new to sleep trackers then we recommend going with the cheapest, most basic option and then trying out more sophisticated gadgets if you’re impressed with the results. Sleep monitors have helped hundreds of people to better understand their sleeping patterns and to ultimately improve them. If you suffer from sleeplessness or always find yourself feeling drained in the morning, then give these sleep trackers a try.
You could always try switching your brand of sleeping tablets too. Before rushing off to spend your hard earned on another gadget, check out our top performing healthy sleep formulas here.