Fitbit adds sleep profiling (provided you’re paying Premium)

Need a little more analysis on how you snooze? Fitbit Premium members will get a little something extra provided they pay.

Getting sleep isn’t something that comes easy to all of us. While some can just lay their head on the pillow and fall into a nice slumber, for many others, it’s actually more difficult.

Whether your brain won’t just shut off for the night or maybe you’re just not tired — or maybe you do get sleep, but it’s not restorative in the slightest — some of us have difficulties sleeping. And while there is technology that can aid and try to analyse and improve sleeping patterns, much of it is a case of going out of your way to add it to your life.

Wearables can provide some analysis, though, with devices like a smartwatch and smartband able to offer some sleep tracking, and depending on the model you have, the analysis can vary greatly.

Fitbit appears to be changing some of that analysis recently, offering subscribers to its paid addition, Fitbit Premium, a little more in thought to what’s going on when they sleep.

It’s an addition coming to a select bunch of Fitbit wearables, namely the recent Charge 5, Versa 2, Versa 3, Luxe, Inspire 2, and Sense, with heart rate tracking and sleep stage analysis needed on the Fitbit to make the technology work, we’re told. That means some gadgets won’t see the support, namely older Fitbit HR models, while sleep tracking for kids won’t be there on the Fitbit Ace models, either, as there’s no heart rate support.

On the supported models, however, Fitbit will be offering a b real down of sleep metrics every month, trends in sleeping behaviours, and for fun, an animal your sleep matches you to.

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To do this, Fitbit’s sleep experts reportedly studied a thousand aspects and features of sleep to break it down, tracking information such as when you sleep soundly, when your sleep is disrupted, how long you’ve slept for, REM sleep, the time it takes to fall asleep, and more, building a profile in the app to understand the patterns of your sleep more carefully.

It probably helps that Fitbit’s gadgets typically offer more than two days of battery life, so you don’t usually need to take the wearable off to charge while you sleep.

For Fitbit’s sleep profiling to work, users will need to track sleep with the feature for at least 14 nights over the course of each month, and also be subscribed to the Fitbit Premium service, which in Australia costs $14.99 monthly or $129.99 per year. That may make it a pricey addition, though one that comes with extra workouts and insight reporting, alongside the sleep profiling feature, as well.

It’s going live next week, with the first sleep profiles delivered from July 4, and monthly profiles on the first of each month following.

Leigh :) Stark

One of Australia's well regarded technology journalists working out of Sydney, Leigh Stark has been writing about technology for over 15 years, covering phones, computers, cameras, headphones, speakers, and more. Stylising his middle initial with an emoticon, he aims to present tech in a way that makes it easy for everyone. While he founded Pickr in 2016, Stark's work can be seen in other publications including The Australian Financial Review, Popular Science, and many more. His award-winning podcast "The Wrap" is syndicated on Southern Cross Austereo's LiSTNR network weekly, while he can be heard on radio via ABC Brisbane and ABC Canberra, and seen on TV's Nine. Check out Leigh Stark's most recent media appearances.

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