Fitbit trackers have always been about simplicity, from the simple LED dots that slowly fill over the course of a long day, to the automatic exercise and sleep tracking that have replaced the need to tap and set things manually.
Today, Fitbit has added another simple feature to a number of its fitness trackers it hopes will spur even more people to take notice of its growing line of products. Aimed at improving the quality of its users' sleep, the feature, aptly titled Sleep Schedule, provides personalized goals for sleep length, along with proper bedtime and wakeup targets, so people can get to be on time, and wake up refreshed.
The feature, which is set entirely from the company's iOS, Android and Windows apps, works in tandem with existing sleep tracking on the bands themselves ensure determine the perfect time to actually fall asleep, based on information from a team of sleep experts from various U.S.-based universities working with the company.
According to the experts, most people need to sleep not only a certain amount per night, but should be going to sleep around the same time every night, too, in order to avoid weight gain. One of Fitbit's experts, Michael Grandner, said, "If you're constantly changing your sleep routine, it can have the same effect as giving yourself jetlag because you are continually changing your circadian rhythm, also known as your internal clock, which can negatively impact your health and wellness."
If the app finds that a user is consistently running afoul of the schedule sleep time, it help him or her find a more suitable time — though most people, especially those who work consistent shifts, don't have a choice on when they need to wake up in the mornings. The question is whether the new feature will help people sleep better.
The trackers compatible with the new sleep schedule feature are:
The new feature is available in the latest Fitbit app update, rolling out today.
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Daniel Bader is a Senior Editor at iMore, offering his Canadian analysis on Apple and its awesome products. In addition to writing and producing, Daniel regularly appears on Canadian networks CBC and CTV as a technology analyst.