Fitbit has introduced a new Sleep Profile feature for Fitbit Premium users, a feature that collects long-term Sleep Metrics to tell you more about your bedtime habits.
The feature is compatible with the best Fitbit devices including the Fitbit Sense, Versa 3, Versa 2, Charge 5, Luxe, and Inspire 2 devices, and is set to launch during the week of July 4. The feature is designed to offer “a new longitudinal analysis of your sleep patterns” after a minimum of 14 days of use, and is used to help “calculate trends and compare them to what is typical for your age and gender”.
It does this by collecting different sleep metrics over those two weeks, including sleep schedule variability, time before sound sleep, disrupted sleep, sleep duration, restfulness, and REM sleep. Once it has all this data, it will assign you to one of 10 kinds of sleep categories, represented by illustrations of very cute animals.
Do you sleep like a giraffe in short bursts, in need of a quality sleep schedule, or do you sleep more like a bear, which tends to fall asleep early and consistently? In case these are the burning questions that, er, keep you up at night, Fitbit will be able to provide the answers from July 4.
On the first of each month, your profile will be updated, so you’ll be able to see if your more general sleep patterns have changed over time.
Analysis: How useful is sleep tracking?
The best sleep trackers, including Fitbit devices, are impressive in the depth of data they can capture. If you do struggle with sleeping regularly and consistently, Fitbit capturing longitudinal data and making it easy to analyze trends in your sleep might encourage you to make changes to get better bedrest.
However, sleep tracking is frequently as pointless as it is impressive. If you’ve been up all night, you know you’ve been up all night. Likewise, it’s no good Fitbit telling you you spent less time in deep sleep than the night before, as it’s not a metric you can take action upon.
We’ve covered the benefits and pitfalls of fitness watches and sleep tracking before, but abstracting all this complex info into broad strokes, like these animal profiles, and updating them each month might prevent you from getting unnecessarily stressed out over the minutiae of sleep.
TechRadar’s own expert sleep editor, Claire Davies, said: “On paper, Fitbit’s sleep profile looks more nuanced than the basic level of sleep tracking we’re used to on wrist-mounted devices. Having a wider range of metrics to draw on helps provide a better context for your overall sleep health.
“But while comparing your data with averages for people of the same age and gender in interesting, remember it’s all subjective. Your mental and physical health, bedroom environment, and partner sharing your bed can each impact your sleep.”
You might be a giraffe this month but don’t set too much store by it. Next month, you could be a bear.