The other day I bought a Jawbone UP, the popular health monitoring device that tracks steps, sleep and sleep quality. I’ve only been using it for a few days but so far so good. I mostly bought it for the sleep monitoring feature, and because I've been generally a bit anxious to test out a health monitoring device.
I’m slightly obsessed about the amount of sleep I get. Often there are nights where I get a good night’s sleep, but I don’t think I did so I worry about it. UP has begun to put my mind at ease – I’m actually getting more sleep than I had thought. The sleep part of the app monitors how long it took me to get to sleep, how long I slept and even deciphers periods of deep sleep versus light sleep.
I measure my daily workouts fairly closely and I use the MapMyRun app for my outdoor runs so the step measuring feature isn’t all that useful to me. Though I think over time it’ll be interesting to look back at the data to see how much I’m moving, and how I'm moving more or less during different periods. I also like being able to view my general activity levels in contrast to my rest.
The wristband itself is good. It looks decent on my wrist, seems durable, the controls are really responsive and it's easy to sync. The iPhone app is fabulous. It’s easy to use and has a seemingly endless number of ways to slice the data it collects.
There are a few more features I haven't used yet that I'll try out in the coming weeks. Lots of people believe that this kind of self-monitoring is the future of healthcare (particularly to help monitor various physiological statistics and behavior change for people with acute illness and/or high risk factors).
I'll write another post on my experience with the UP in a few months after I've compiled a bunch of data.