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Is Fitbit Sleep Tracker Accurate

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Sleep Trackers Dont Measure Sleep Very Well

How Accurate Are Fitbit Sleep Stages? | Lets test it

So, do FitBits, Apple Watches and Oura Rings track sleep with accuracy? The answer is, not really. Particularly when it comes to sleep stages. These wearables measure movement very well and are great when used for tracking steps and exercise. But when it comes to sleep, movement and heart rate are not always so helpful in determining sleep. If we are reading in bed quietly for a long period of time, for instance, your device may think youre asleep.

And when it comes to measuring sleep stages, your wearable device is ineffective. In order to accurately measure sleep stages, you would need to have a sleep study in a lab where your brain waves are monitored. Your device may be helpful in giving you an estimate of your general sleep patterns, but are otherwise limited in their effectiveness. Your FitBit has no way of measuring brain waves and typically the sleep stages are just an estimate.

How To Pick The Best Sleep Tracker For You

With so many sleep trackers on the market, how do you choose the best one for you? Here are a few questions to ask:

  • Do you want a device you can wear and check regularly, and perhaps something that integrates with your other health data, like physical activity? Then consider a wearable like a smartwatch or wristband. But if you find something like that intrusive to have on all the time , you might look at a non-wearable.
  • Whatâs your budget? The prices for most sleep trackers range from about $100 to $300. âSmart mattressesâ that track your sleep, as well as offering a variety of âcomfortâ technologies aimed at improving your sleep, typically start north of $2,000 and can cost $5,000 or more.
  • How much information do you want? Some sleep trackers just monitor your vital signs, like heart rate, respiration, and movement, while others also monitor the environment around you, including things like noise, temperature, and humidity.
  • How can you use the information? If you want to share data with your doctor or another health professional, consider what can be done with the deviceâs reports. Many of the associated apps can generate printable PDFs to take to a doctorâs appointment, or online charts and graphs you can send via email.

Obsessing About Sleep Makes Sleep Worse

Its important to remember that there was life before wearable devices and if your sleep seems to have gotten worse since you started wearing it, it is a good idea to take a break. One of the biggest contributors to insomnia is anxiety about sleep. And your FitBit can cause you to pay too much attention to sleep and some people may start to become obsessed with getting enough sleep.

The truth is we are all different and have varying sleep needs. While one person may feel really good after 6.5 hours of sleep, the next person may need 9 hours. Becoming focused on what your device says is not a healthy place to be for many of us. And starting to focus more on how your body feels and what helps you the most, is important. Practice letting go of that quest for a perfect report or trying to achieve what others say is the right amount of sleep.

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The Newly Introduced Sleep Tracking Feature In Garmin:

Your sleep schedule affects your complete routine. Your productivity, health, and well-being depend upon a healthy sleep schedule.

Mostly, a good 7-9 hour sleep at night is recommended. But with the hectic routine, it gets difficult to keep track of your sleep.

Hence, the sleep tracking feature of Garmin makes it possible for you to monitor and maintain a healthy sleep routine.

Also, you can keep track of how your sleep was, whether light or deep, and also the REM sleep tracking is available. The results keep on getting accurate, to provide you enhanced readings about your sleep.

The Phases in Your Sleep:

Each night, under normal circumstances, you go through some phases while you sleep. Your sleep does not contain uniformity and varies throughout the night.

The phases constitute the light sleep phase, the deep sleep phase, and Rapid Eye Movement sleep.

The initial phase is light sleep which refers to relaxing your muscles and preparing them for the deep sleep phase.

Your muscle activity will slow down and your body will get soothed. As you proceed to the deep sleep, the eye muscle movement ceases completely and your heartbeat and breathing get slow.

At this stage, your bodys restoration mode gets on and your body starts recovering and building the necessary parts and muscles and also boosts up your immunity.

The last phase is REM sleep, which is the dreaming phase of your sleep. At this stage, your brain is as active as you are awake.

TheMeasuring Technique of Garmin:

Why I Chose The Alta Hr For The Month

Fitbit Charge Sleep Recording Accuracy

Having worn many different trackers on my wrist at night, I know that I prefer them to be as comfortable and unobtrusive as possible.

The Alta HR ticks all of those boxes. With a similar look to the Charge 2, its considerably thinner. And its not far off the previous champion of lightweight wearables the Jawbone UP3.

And like the Charge 2, it also looks great on the wrist. Many devices look a bit ugly, are too bulky or worse still, both. And that doesnt inspire long-term use. But I thought Id be happy keeping the slim and sleek Alta HR on for a month, and I was right.

Another key point is that it has a fantastic battery life one week with a single charge. And that means less risk of not using it because you cant find the charging cable or you forget to put it back on again!

Read Also: Does The Garmin Vivofit 4 Track Sleep

Making The Switch: Fitbit Or Apple Watch

If you are looking to only own one of the two options , you need to figure out if what you mainly want is a smartwatch with impressive technology or an all around fitness and wellness tracker. If you are looking for a smartwatch, Apple really does have some of the most impressive technology on the market. The variety of apps and features that come with the Apple Watch are really great. However, if you are looking for an all around fitness and wellness tracker, right now the Fitbit is probably your best bet, especially the Sense which has some of the strongest tech that Fitbit has to offer.

Fitbit Accuracy For Heart Rate Tracking

Fitbit has four devices that track heart rate: the Fitbit Charge HR, the Fitbit Charge 2, the Fitbit Blaze, and the Fitbit Surge. These devices use PurePulse technology to measure your pulse. PurePulse is Fitbits version of optical heart rate monitoring, in which flashing lights located on the bottom of the device measure blood flow. In order to get the most accurate results, Fitbit recommends that users wear the device a few inches above the wrist.

Fitbits claims about heart rate accuracy also appear to have put them in legal trouble. Three plaintiffs filed a class action lawsuit that claims PurePulse is inaccurate. A study commissioned by the plaintiffs legal team concluded, Fitbit PurePulse trackers do not provide a valid measure of the users heart rate and cannot be used to provide a meaningful estimate of a users heart rate. They found that the Charge HR was off by an average of 15.5 bpm, and the Surge was off by an average of 22.8 bpm.

Fitbit stands by its PurePulse Technology. Additionally, a test by Consumer Reports contradicts the claims of the lawsuit. Researchers made a total of 64 heart rate measurements on two test subjects: one male and one female. The researchers compared the results against the Polar H7 ECG, a chest strap heart rate monitor.

Their tests found that the Fitbit Charge HR and the Fitbit Surge were highly accurate. The largest difference between them and the chest strap amounted to no more than three heartbeats per minute.

Read Also: How Good Is Garmin Sleep Tracking

Estimated Oxygen Variation Graph Explained

Unlike some devices that will give you a number for your blood oxygen level. However, a Fitbit spokesperson told us that the graph provided by Fitbit is an “estimation of the variability of oxygen levels in the bloodstream”.

It’s not a graph of the actual Sp02 estimate.

The example screenshot above shows what the graph will look like and from what we can see, blood oxygen is monitored by the sensor during sleep and variations which could show a sleep apnea issue are highlighted on the graph.

Essential reading: Fitbit’s Sleep Score explained

“We’re showing a metric which correlates with the average variability of your blood oxygen level,” said Dr. Conor Heneghan.

“Lets say Person A has oxygen level of 96% +/-1% and Person B has oxygen level of 95% +/- 4% throughout the night, then Person B will see a higher estimated oxygen variation throughout the night. We calculate this every minute.”

Tip : Improve Swim Tracking Accuracy

Fitbit Charge 4 Sleep Tracking Accuracy

If you want to track a swim session, make sure youve calibrated the tracker to the length of the pool. You can do this by going into your Account > Activity & Wellness and going to Exercise. Then tap through to the swimming option to adjust the pool length.

On the Sense and Versa series smartwatches, you can do this before each swim on the watch itself by tapping the cog icon in the top left and adjusting the distance.

Make sure you do this to ensure the best accuracy in the pool.

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Is A Fitbit Sleep Tracker Compatible With My Phone Or Tablet

Fitbits trackers are compatible with more than 200 Apple, Android, or Windows 10 phones or tablets. It will sync up with devices that run iOS 10 or higher and OS 5.0 or higher.

You can visit Fitbits website to search for your device to make sure its compatible with the Fitbit tracking system. Even if you believe your phone or tablet will likely work with Fitbit, it might be a good idea to check for compatibility before making your purchase.

Apple Watch Series 6 And Se

Price when reviewed: From $279.99

With the arrival of watchOS 7, the Apple Watch does offer native sleep tracking. That support has been added to the Series 3, 4, 5 and the new Series 6 and SE watches.

That means you no longer have to rely on third party apps to track your slumber. What you will now get with compatible Watches are details on how long you slept, showing dark and light periods for any time you woke up in the night.

It works alongside a new BedTime feature that brings iPhone and Watch closer together to make sure you get to bed on time and wake you up in the morning too.

It’s simple but accurate, and in our testing usually matched Fitbit minute for minute with unwavering reliability. It’s just the detail that doesn’t match up.

It’s a little more basic than what you’ll find on Fitbit’s watches or other sleep monitoring watches for that matter.

So if you still want some richer insights, there are still a bunch ofApple Watch sleep tracker apps in the App Store you can make use of until Apple decides to beef up its own offering.

That being said, the Apple Watch is a comfortable smartwatch to wear to bed. Again, not quite as light or small as the Fitbit options even if you get the 38/40 mm variation but not a device that feels alien to keep on. And that’s especially true if you’re wearing a light band, such as the sporty silicon or knitted loops.

Also Check: Does The Gear S2 Track Sleep

Best Fitbit In : Choose The Right Fitness Tracker

Choosing the best Fitbit for you all depends upon your needs and budget. Fitbit’s devices are some of the best fitness trackers you can buy, but range from the $70 Fitbit Inspire to the $329 Fitbit Sense, so it’s important to know what you’re looking for.

All of Fitbit’s devices automatically track activities, steps, and sleep. They’re all water-resistant, come with female health-tracking, and all can receive notifications from your smartphone. And all of them also connect with Fitbit’s excellent app, as well as connect to a huge community of other Fitbit users, whom you can challenge to reach fitness goals.

Some Fitbits have characteristics of the best smartwatches, including advanced features, such as heart rate monitoring, mobile payments, access to an app store, color displays, even built-in GPS and on-screen workouts. Our roundup of the best Fitbit deals right now can help you score the one you want at a discount, too.

See all of the best Fitbits below.

Wearing It To Bed: Apple Watch Vs Fitbit

An Experiment About Sleep Log Accuracy (includes i ...

Even if sleep tracking is not your priority, it is an added bonus not to have to remember to take off and plug in your watch every night before you go to bed. This is where the Fitbit wins. The battery lasts much longer and we already discussed how superior its sleep tracking capabilities are.

If you do decide that you want to wear the Apple Watch through the night, you have to make sure that you leave a couple of hours in the morning to get it fully charged. Your battery will likely be almost dead by the time you wake up. The Apple Watch does have a low-power mode that you could opt to use if you could not charge it, but when you put it in that mode, it loses most of its capabilities besides telling the time.

No matter which device you have, if you decide to wear it to bed there are some safety precautions that you have to keep in mind. You want to make sure that you keep the wristband on the device loose while you are sleeping so it does not cut off your circulation.

Of course, you do not want the watch falling off. If it does you will lose a full night of sleep tracking. However, if it is too tight and gets stuck between you and the mattress, it can be quite dangerous.

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How Long Will It Last: Apple Watch Vs Fitbit

Both companies come out with new products fairly regularly, so if you are a person who always wants the newest and greatest, they will both age relatively quickly. However, if you are talking about ability to function over time, both the Fitbit and the Apple Watch are durable devices.

Fitbit has lots of waterproof options and the Apple Watch is a waterproof device. The Fitbit does have some more heavy-duty options that can be good for kids who play rough on the playground, however, both can stand up well to your typical wear and tear.

Do Sleep Trackers Really Work

Activity trackers are all the rage, and millions of wrists now sportdevices that monitor everything from your heart rate and oxygen consumptionto the number of steps you take each day.

Among their many functions, activity trackers can also shine a light onyour biggest source of inactivity: sleep.

But do they actually work? Read on to learn what sleep tracking devices cantell you

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First Tests Basic Accuracy

The sleep stage breakdown is largely possible because of the ability to combine data from both the movement and constant heart rate sensors. So to trust the sleep data, it would be helpful if the movement and heart rate appear accurate during the daytime too.

Where heart rate is concerned, the resting heart rate appears very accurate. I tested it against my pulse and stopwatch many times during the month, and it was pretty much always spot on.

When it came to heavy exercise, however, it was a whole other story. The Alta really struggles to keep up when Im at the gym possibly because of the constant wrist bending when lifting weights and rowing, which Fitbit themselves admit can cause problems.

But during the night, that shouldnt be an issue. So Im reasonably satisfied that when Im not moving, the heart rate reading can be trusted .

As for less vigorous movement, again it seems pretty good. It counts my steps well during the day, and reacts automatically to exercise such as walking or cycling. And importantly, when I get up in the night to use the toilet or get a drink, it hasnt missed it once .

An important point here is that this is the kind of initial testing the average person might do with a new device. And if a device passes these tests, its more likely the owner will trust the more complex data like sleep stages.

For Older Fitbit Models Try These Restart Steps

Fitbit Sense Accuracy (Sleep, Step counting, Heart Rate)
  • Connect your Fitbit to its charging cable and make sure its plugged in and placed properly.
  • Hold down the button for between five & ten seconds. You will usually see the Fitbit logo appear or the screen flashes.
  • Release the button or buttons.
  • Disconnect the tracker from its charger and turn it back on if necessary.
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    How Does The Fitbit Versa Compare To Other Sleep Trackers

    As any consumer does with a product theyre considering, our sleep product assessments naturally involve comparing them with other similar products. Be it construction, features, or performance, we think its important to see how the Fitbit Versa stacks up to other sleep trackers.

    The Fitbit Versa is a highly advanced device that tracks sleep data and provides personalized sleep coaching. The smart watch also monitors the wearers heart rate, tracks daily physical activities, and syncs to almost any smartphone.

    Check out our selections below if youd like to see a few comparable tracking devices.

    Beddit 3 Sleep Tracker

    $15.99, 2 years with accidental damage coverage$29.99, 2 years with accidental damage coverage$29.99, 2 years with accidental damage coverage$34.99, 2 years with accidental damage coverage$54.99, 2 years with accidental damage coverage

    Fitbit Sleep Tracking Features

    Most Fitbit devices provide automatic tracking to record the amount of sleep you get in a given night. The devices also track the amount of time spent in different sleep stages. Fitbit trackers keeps tab on what sleep stage youre in and the amount of time youre in a specific stage using sensitive motion detectors and PurePulse heart rate tracking.

    Its important to double-check the exact specs of your Fitbit, as some devices have more features than others. The next table lists some notable features found in the three sleep/fitness trackers and two smart watches from Fitbit.

    Fitbit Model

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