Best Sleep Tracker Device

10 Most Accurate Sleep Trackers Reviewed and Explained (2018)

According to the Pew Research Center, 7 out of 10 Americans use a tracking device to monitor some aspect of their health – whether that be diet, fitness, or sleep.

To ensure self-tracking has a positive effect on our health, we must pick a tracking device that is accurate. In the last 5 years alone, sleep-tracking technology has come on leaps and bounds, so choosing the best sleep tracker for our needs can seem overwhelming.

With that in mind, we’ve reviewed 10 of the most accurate sleep trackers available in 2018. As we know, price doesn’t necessarily correlate with quality, so you’ll find a tracker for every budget in this review. Before we reveal the top 10 sleep trackers, let’s explore the different types of sleep trackers, the benefits of sleep tracking, and the impressive technology behind these devices.

What Are Sleep Trackers?

In simple terms, they allow you to measure the duration and quality of your sleep. Trackers sync your “sleep data” to an app on your smartphone or tablet. This app interprets the sleep data and translates it into meaningful insights. Most sleep trackers will then offer personalized recommendations for improving your sleep.

Broadly speaking, there are two types – wearable devices and non-wearable devices. Many people are unsure whether to opt for a wearable or non-wearable sleep tracker.

Wearable Vs Non-Wearable Sleep Trackers

The main difference is that wearables tend to track 24/7 health data, whereas non-wearables tend to track sleep data alone (although there are some exceptions!).

So, if you’re only interested in tracking sleep, does this mean you should opt for a non-wearable sleep tracker? Not necessarily. Even if you’re not interested in tracking your daytime activities or fitness level, it can be useful to understand how your waking life influences your sleep – and vice versa. After all, we know that our bodies operate according to a circadian rhythm (24-hour biological clock), so circadian data-tracking could help us improve our sleep.

Ultimately, the device you choose really depends on the type of data you’re trying to collect, your budget, your lifestyle, and personal preference. Let’s briefly explore the main types of wearable and non-wearable sleep trackers.

Wearable Sleep Trackers

There are several types of wearable trackers that can measure sleep; some give you a very simplistic measure of sleep whereas others provide very valuable insights.

  • Smartwatch –The main purpose of a smartwatch is to keep you connected (in the same way that a smartphone would). These devices may have a basic in-built sleep monitor that can measure the duration of your sleep, but you would probably need to download a third-party app to gain more sophisticated sleep data. Smartwatches often need to be charged daily, so you may not be able to track your sleep data on a regular basis.
  • Fitness/Health Wristband Health wristbands primarily focus on 24/7 health and fitness monitoring. These devices often have an inbuilt pedometer, accelerometer, and heart-rate monitor. These devices can measure the duration and quality of your sleep. According to a survey by GFK, 29% of people said they use a health/fitness tracker primarily to “improve their sleep.” Fitness bands are generally very lightweight and have a much longer charge-life than smartwatches.
  • Smartwatch/Health Tracker Hybrid – In the last few years, we’ve seen hybrid models that combine the sophistication of health-tracking, with some of the features of smart technology (i.e. calls and texts and even online payments). Hybrid models have a decent battery life so you’re unlikely to lose any of your circadian data.
  • Health Tracking Ring – In the last year or so, rings have emerged on the sleep-tracking scene. These rings can track 24/7 data and may be slightly more accurate than wristbands when it comes to measuring heart-rate.
  • Pulse Oximeter – Some home tracking systems include attachments that sit on the end of the finger and measure the oxygen saturation in your blood. These are the only wearable devices that don’t offer 24/7 health data because they are only worn at night. Nonetheless, they can measure blood oxygen saturation which may help to detect certain sleep disorders.

Non-Wearable Sleep Trackers

Although wearable devices seem better at contextualizing sleep data within the circadian cycle, some non-wearable devices will ask you to input information about any daytime influences (such as caffeine intake and mood), to see how these are affecting your sleep.

Moreover, some people choose non-wearable sleep trackers because they find wrist or finger devices irritating. Clearly, if wearable devices are going to disturb your sleep, they’ll be counterproductive. If that’s the case, you might find one of these non-wearable trackers more suitable:

  • Mattress SensorsSensors are placed underneath your mattress or pillow. These can measure the duration and quality of your sleep.
  • Bedside TrackersThese trackers look like bedside lamps, so some people prefer them because they don’t look too clinical. These systems detect the length and quality of your sleep. Some bedside trackers can also evaluate your sleep environment (temperature, light, noise) to see how it is affecting your sleep.
  • Standalone Smartphone Apps Free apps can be downloaded to your smartphone. When you go to sleep, you notify the app and place the phone next to your pillow. The app will track the duration of your sleep by measuring your body movements. These apps are not as sophisticated as dedicated sleep/health trackers – but they can offer some basic sleep insights.

Although non-wearable devices do not measure 24/7 health stats, the data from some non-wearable devices can be integrated with other health systems that measure daytime activities such as Apple Health (for IOS) or Google Fit (for Android) – giving you access to circadian data.

Even if the non-wearable device is not integrated with Apple Health or Google Fit, you may be able to integrate it with another daytime health tracking app via free intermediaries like Fitnesssyncer.

What Are the Benefits of Sleep Trackers?

So, we’ve established the different types of sleep trackers, but are sleep trackers really worth the investment?

Let’s briefly explore the benefits of sleep trackers.

  • How long you sleep -they can tell you if you’re sleeping for too little time (or sleeping for too long).
  • How well you sleep – they tell you how much time you spend in each of the four sleep cycles.
  • Sleep influences – many trackers allow you to see how daytime influences (caffeine, sports, stress) or bedtime environment (temperature, light) affect sleep.
  • Sleep/Health coaching – most sleep-tracking apps offer personalized advice on improving your sleep hygiene. Some can even tell you whether you should workout hard or take it easy – depending on the quality of sleep you’ve had.
  • Health insights – many sleep trackers track data 24/7 so can indicate the condition of your overall health.
  • Sleep reminders – trackers can tell you when it is time to go to bed.
  • Smart-alarms – many trackers have smart-alarms that can wake you during your lightest stage of sleep to stop you feeling groggy.
  • Community tracking – many apps let you share your data with your friends and family. Also, some apps use benchmark data to compare you sleep stats with other people in a similar age group or job role.
  • Mindful and motivated – sleep trackers remind us to stay on top of this important aspect of our lives.

How Do Sleep Trackers Measure Sleep?

Now we know the many benefits of sleep trackers, let’s understand the science behind these devices.

Most sleep trackers measure:

  1. Body movements
  2. Cardiovascular activity (heart-rate, heart-rate variability, and/or respiration-rate)

This data is useful because certain stages of the sleep cycle are characterized by different types of body movements and cardiovascular changes. For example, during slow-wave sleep, our heart-rate, breathing, and body movements slow right down.

Once sleep trackers have collected our sleep data, they can use an algorithm to determine:

  1. How long we’ve slept for
  2. How much time we’ve spent in each of the four sleep cycles

This is a very simplistic explanation of how sleep trackers work, and of course, some use varying technology, but it’s true to say that most measure body movements, and heart-activity to deliver your sleep data.

A few years ago, sleep trackers primarily measured body movements (most free smartphone apps still only measure body movements or use a microphone to detect sounds). Now that technology has moved on, you should look for a device that measures both movements and heart-activity.

Let’s briefly discuss how sleep trackers measure body movements and cardiovascular activity.

Body Movements

The measure of sleep by body movements is typically referred to as actigraphy. Mobile phone apps or wrist devices use an accelerometer to detect body movements. When looking for a wearable sleep tracker, choose a device that has a ‘3-axis accelerometer.’

Non-wearable sleep trackers (i.e., bed systems) typically measure body movements by assessing pressure (piezoelectric technology) or vibrations.

Cardiovascular Activity

Wearable sleep trackers measure heart-activity using a process called photoplethysmography (PPG). The trackers have LED’s which shine light into the skin. The activity of the light reveals information about pulse activity, heart-rate, heart-rate variability, respiration rate, and (potentially) oxygen levels in the blood. When looking for a sleep tracker that offers this technology, look out for an ‘optical heart-rate monitor’ or ‘infrared sensor’ in the specs.

Some non-wearable sleep trackers use piezoelectric sensors to measure pressure. This can reveal information about body movements, but also heart-rate and respiration-rate. A few non-wearables also use a technology called ballistocardiography. In simple terms, vibrations are used to infer details about movement, respiratory rate, and heart-rate.

Given that the tracking technology is often proprietary to companies, we cannot always know exactly how tracking devices measure sleep. Nonetheless, it’s best to opt for a device that claims to measure your body movements and heart-rate, at the very least.

How Do Sleep Trackers Know I’m Going to Sleep?

As mentioned, wearable sleep trackers will detect sleep when your body movements and heart-rate indicate that you are falling asleep.

It’s true to say that, sometimes, sleep trackers wrongly record sleep when you are just lying on the sofa watching TV. Sleep trackers are not 100% accurate so most users will experience a degree of error. Some devices are more accurate than others at detecting sleep – as we’ll explore. Most devices will allow you to delete these mistakes, so they don’t affect your overall sleep scores.

It should be noted that most wearable devices (wrist trackers or rings) detect sleep automatically, so you don’t need to tell the device you’re sleeping. On the other hand, most non-wearables require you to notify the app you’re sleeping which is one of the issues with non-wearables. However, in this review, we reveal two non-wearable sleep trackers that offer automatic sleep detection!

How Accurate Are Sleep Trackers?

The “gold-standard” sleep-tracking technology is polysomnography. This is done in a lab environment and predominantly uses EEG machines to measure brainwaves. Brainwaves can give a very granular analysis of sleep quality.

Although polysomnography is the most accurate measure of sleep, it is expensive and impractical for most people. This is where sleep trackers come in. According to a study published by Sage Journals, tracking sleep duration using actigraphy (body-movement analysis) is 90% as effective as polysomnography. In other words, many sleep trackers will be very accurate at monitoring the duration of your sleep.

Also, this study found that, concerning measuring sleep quality (i.e., time spent in each sleep cycle), actigraphy is about 50% as effective as lab testing. As we know, many contemporary sleep trackers employ additional methods besides body-movement analysis to track the time spent in each sleep cycle.

As such, we can assume that contemporary sleep trackers that measure both body movements and heart-rate data are at least 50% as accurate as polysomnography lab tests – if not more because they are using an additional measure.

It’s hoped that, over time, more clinical trials will be performed to test the true accuracy of contemporary sleep trackers.

Can Sleep Trackers Diagnose Sleep Disorders?

All commercial sleep trackers are classed as “wellness devices.” This means they are not approved by the FDA to make any diagnoses and should not be used to diagnose a sleep disorder.

Having said that, sleep trackers are potentially useful tools for identifying whether an issue needs further examination. Moreover, when patients visit their doctor to report a potential sleep problem, the doctor will often ask them to keep a sleep diary for a couple of weeks.

According to a professional review on Science Direct, sleep-tracking apps are a modern and convenient way of keeping a reliable sleep diary. As such, these devices could assist (indirectly) in the detection and investigation of sleep disorders.

With that in mind, let’s explore 10 of the most accurate sleep-tracking devices available in 2018.

What Are the Best Wearable Sleep Trackers?

1) Fitbit Versa Smartwatch

Fitbit Versa Smartwatch ReviewFitbit’s latest creation, the Fitbit Versa Smartwatch, was released in April 2018. This clever health tracker/smartwatch hybrid is a more affordable version of the ground-breaking Fitbit Iconic.

Choose the Fitbit Versa Smartwatch if you like the idea of tracking your health 24/7. If you want to understand how your lifestyle impacts your sleep (and vice versa) this tracker will be a perfect fit for you.

Sleep Tracking Features

  • Automatic sleep detection (tracks sleep duration and awakenings)
  • Sleep stage analysis – records how much time spent in each sleep stage
  • Sleep coaching – to improve sleep hygiene
  • Female health tracking function – allows you to track your monthly cycle in relation to sleep

How Does the Fitbit Versa Measure Sleep?

This device autodetects sleep so there’s no need to notify your watch that it’s bedtime (naps of less than one hour might not be captured). The device measures sleep duration and sleep quality based on a combination of your bodily movements, heart-rate, and heart-rate variability (HRV).

It does this using the built-in 3-axis accelerometer, the vibration motor, and the optical heart-rate monitor.

What Does the Output Data Look Like?  

To access your sleep analytics, download the insightful Fitbit app to your smartphone or tablet. This app provides easy to understand sleep analytics in the form of graphs and charts. Unlike many other apps, Fitbit compares your sleep data to other people’s sleep data in your demographic (benchmark data), allowing you to see how you compare to others.

Also, because Fitbit tracks 24/7 data (daytime physical activity, daytime heart-rate, calories burned), you’ll be able to see if the quality/duration of your sleep changes in response to daytime activities.

The app gives you plenty of personalized tips to improve your sleep. Based on your data, the app will design a healthy new sleep schedule (your “Sleep Goal”) for you to follow. You’ll get reminders on your watch, telling you it’s time to sleep, allowing you to adapt to your new routine quickly.

Additional Key Features

  • Vibrating ‘silent’ alarm to wake you gently
  • Water resistant to 50m
  • Tracks calories burned and it has on-screen workouts to motivate you
  • 4+ days battery life
  • Receive smartphone notifications (calls, texts, emails, and calendar updates)
  • Connected GPS to map daytime walks/runs/cycles (‘borrows’ GPS from your smartphone, so the phone needs to present)
  • You can even make payments using this device

Pros

  • The set-up is very easy, and the Fitbit app output is simple to understand (great for anyone new to sleep tracking)
  • It is lightweight compared to many other wearable devices so is unlikely to disturb sleep.
  • The Fitbit Versa measures heart-rate, heart-rate variability, and movements and is recognized for its accuracy
  • It’s a smartwatch/health tracker hybrid, so you get a lot for your money. If you want a device that tracks your health 24/7 and helps you stay connected – it’s a good investment

Cons

  • It’s great that this tracker has many features, but these added extras can run the battery down fairly quickly. If you get into the habit of charging it regularly, this shouldn’t be a problem. Nevertheless, if you’re only interested in mapping sleep, and can do without the added extras, other trackers boast a better battery life.
  • Fitbit devices do not yet offer a smart-alarm feature

Find Out About the Fitbit Versa Smartwatch on Amazon!

2) Huawei Band 2 Pro All-in-One Tracker

Huawei Band 2 Pro All-in-One Tracker ReviewThis health tracker from ‘budget’ brand Huawei does an excellent job of measuring sleep. Not only that, the Huawei Band 2 Pro offers many of the ‘extras’ you’d find in much pricier models – such as GPS and a smart-alarm!  Like the Fitbit Versa, this health band measures your biometrics 24/7, so can help you track your overall health.

Choose this tracker if you want an affordable device that offers sleep analysis and fitness analysis – all in one place.

Sleep Tracking Features

  • Automatic sleep detection (tracks duration of sleep and awakenings)
  • Sleep cycle analysis
  • Smart alarm feature – a vibrating alarm that wakes you in your lightest stage of sleep to prevent fatigue and grogginess
  • Personalized recommendations to improve sleep

How Does the Huawei Band 2 Measure Sleep?

This health tracker measures the duration and quality of your sleep using HUAWEI TRU SLEEP technology. This device includes a detached PPD cardiotachometer, infrared sensor, and 3-axis accelerometer to measure movements and heart-rate during sleep.

What Does the Output Data Look like?

To manage your wrist tracker and read your sleep data, you’ll need to download two apps to your smartphone – Huawei Wear and Huawei Health. (This device supports Android 4.4 or later and iOS 8.0 or later).

Huawei Wear helps you manage the device (alarms, notifications) and Huawei Health organizes all your sleep data. The Huawei Health app gives you a lot of easy-to-understand sleep data. For example, the Huawei Sleep Function gives you a detailed breakdown of time spent in REM sleep and NREM sleep. Also, each morning your entire sleep data is computed into a ‘sleep quality’ score.

Additional Key Features

  • Built-in GPS
  • Water resistant to 50m
  • Estimates your VO2 max using a professional algorithm (a great fitness tool)
  • Guided breathing programme to help you calm down before bed
  • Receive call/text notifications (preview the first line of a text message)

Pros

  • The design is smooth and ergonomic, making it comfortable to sleep in
  • It boasts an excellent battery life – lasts up to 21 days and charges fully within 1.5 hours (if you use GPS this will run the battery down quicker)
  • The smart-alarm function stops you feeling groggy in the morning
  • Considering the incredible amount of features you get, this device offers amazing value for money

Cons

  • You need to download two apps to get full functionality, which can be a bit fiddly at first. Nevertheless, once you’re up and running, the device and app are easy to use.

Find Out About the Huawei Band 2 Pro All-in-One Tracker on Amazon!

3) Nokia Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch

Nokia Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch ReviewReleased in late 2017 by Nokia (originally developed by Withings), this smartwatch measures fitness and sleep very accurately. Like the Fitbit Versa, the Nokia Steel HR is a hybrid health tracker/smartwatch. The difference is, the Nokia Steel HR has the appearance of a traditional analog watch. But don’t be fooled, this minimalist clock-face hides a multitude of techy features.

Choose this tracker if you want an accurate 24/7 health tracker that’s smart and discreet enough to wear to work.

Sleep Tracking Features

  • Automatic sleep detection (measures total duration including awakenings)
  • Sleep cycle analysis
  • Smart-alarm to wake you in lightest stage of sleep (vibrating alarm)
  • Sleep coaching

How Does the Nokia Steel HR Measure Sleep?

This smartwatch has a built-in 3-axis accelerometer, motor sensors, and an infrared sensor. Like the previous two devices, it uses actigraphy and photoplethysmography to measure sleep. These metrics can compute the duration and quality of sleep. Thanks to the smart-alarm feature, these metrics are used to wake you at your lightest stage of sleep (within any given 30-minute window).

What Does the Output Data Look Like?

To access your sleep data, you’ll need to download the Nokia Healthmate app.  The data from your smartwatch syncs to the app via Bluetooth, so check your smartphone has Bluetooth 4.0, BLE or Bluetooth smart before purchasing this watch.

The Nokia Healthmate app is incredibly simple to use and features a variety of graphs and charts to present your sleep data. Unlike some apps, it stores your sleep data indefinitely so that you can compare your sleep over weeks, months, or even years.

One of the benefits of tracking your health data via Nokia Healthmate is that it integrates effectively with many other health apps. For example, you can integrate your data with Google Fit (for android phones) or Apple Health (for IOS devices) and many others. This can give you an even better overview of your health data.

Additional Key Features

  • Water resistant to 50m
  • Battery life of 25+ days
  • Smartphone notifications

Pros

  • This is a high-quality product made with durable fabric
  • This watch has a timeless design; It’s smart enough to wear in the office- allowing you to commit to 24/7 health tracking
  • Excellent battery life so you don’t miss out on any of your valuable sleep data
  • The app is clever, easy-to-use, and integrates well with other health-tracking tools

Cons                     

  • Finding any negatives with this health-tracking device is difficult! If you’re picky, you could question whether it has as many features as some of its competitors. If you choose this device, you’re partly paying for the chic and elegant design so if you’re not too fussed about that you could opt for the Fitbit Versa which is around the same price-point, offers similar accuracy in health tracking – but offers a few more techy features.

Find Out About the Nokia Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch on Amazon!

4) Fitbit Alta HR

Fitbit Alta HR ReviewFitbit is a trailblazer in this industry so it’s no surprise that a Fitbit device should make the list twice. Like the Huawei Band 2 Pro, the Fitbit Alta HR is an affordable health-tracker that measures both physical movements and heart-rate accurately.

Choose the Fitbit Alta HR if you want a lightweight, basic sleep tracker at an affordable price. Indeed, if you or a loved-one is new to sleep tracking, this would make the perfect purchase.

Sleep Tracking Features

  • Automatic sleep detection (tracks duration of sleep and night-time awakenings)
  • Sleep stage analysis
  • Sleep coaching (helps you establish a healthier sleep schedule, and reminds you when to sleep)

How Does the Fitbit Alta HR Measure Sleep?

This device measures length and quality of sleep. Using Fitbit’s PurePulse technology, it has an inbuilt optical heart-rate monitor to track heart-rate. Also, it has a 3-axis accelerometer to detect movements. This data is consolidated to measure the time spent in light, deep and REM sleep stages.

What Does the Output Data Look Like?

As with the Fitbit Versa, you’ll need to download the Fitbit app onto your smartphone or tablet to sync your sleep data.

As mentioned, the Fitbit app shows a breakdown of your sleep duration and sleep quality in easy-to-read graphs, and also compares your output to benchmark data. It provides actionable tips to help you improve your sleep.  If you have friends or family with this device, you can also join an active ‘network’ and share your sleep or fitness stats – this is a great motivational tool.

The Fitbit app is constantly being updated, and the developers take on board user-feedback when improving functionality. This is important because it suggests your sleep output data is only likely to improve as time goes on.

Additional Key Features

  • ‘Silent’ vibrating alarm to wake up gently
  • Reminders to move if you sit still for too long during the day
  • Basic smartphone notifications if your phone is nearby
  • Comes in many colors with interchangeable bands
  • Seven days of battery life

Pros

  • Lightweight and slim so it won’t disturb sleep
  • Made from a durable elastomer and stainless steel so unlikely to break
  • Because there are few add-ons, the battery life is excellent – so you’ll never miss out on any sleep data
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Not waterproof. If you wanted to track swims, you’d need to opt for another device.
  • There have been some complaints that this device is not sensitive enough when detecting sleep (i.e., it confuses sitting in front of the TV with sleeping). This device may be slightly less accurate than others on this list, but it gives you to the option to delete any periods of rest that were misread as sleep.

Find Out About the Fitbit Alta HR on Amazon!

5) Motiv Ring Fitness, Sleep, and Heart Tracker

Motiv Ring Sleep Tracker ReviewThis ‘new-age’ health tracker is one of the few sleep tracker rings on the market. Though it’s at the more expensive end of the market, it does offer users something unique.

Choose the Motiv Ring if you want a health tracker that is discreet, elegant and pioneering.

Sleep Tracking Features

  • Automatic sleep detection (sleep duration)
  • Personalized sleep advice
  • Allows you to set sleep goals

How Does the Motiv Ring Measure Sleep?

The ring is fitted with an optical heart-rate monitor and 3-axis accelerometer to measure cardiac data and body movements.

Because the ring is situated on the finger, it gets snug contact with a very strong pulse point. This means it may capture heart-rate data more effectively than a wrist device.

What Does the Output Data Look Like?  

To access your health data, you’ll need to download the Motiv app. The data syncs to the app via Bluetooth. This ring is compatible with IOS 9.0 (or later), and Android 6.0 Marshmallow (or later) so do keep that in mind.

The app gives you a detailed output of your sleep duration and allows you to set sleep goals based on this info. It then automatically adjusts your sleep goals according to the progress you make.

The app integrates effectively with Apple Health (for IOS) and Google Fit (for Android) allowing you to keep your health data all in one place.

Additional Key Features

  • 3-day battery life
  • Sophisticated fitness tracking
  • A snug fit (they’ll post out a sizing scale to you so that you can choose the best size)

Pros

  • Fully charges in around 90 minutes and can even be charged on the go using a keyring. This means you never have to miss out on sleep data.
  • This device may measure heart-rate more accurately than a wrist tracker
  • Offers a non-intrusive, discreet way to track health

Cons

  • Unlike some apps, the Motiv app doesn’t give you detailed sleep stage analysis. Then again, it does give you very accurate heart-tracking data and is likely to measure sleep duration more accurately than its competitors.

Find Out About the Motiv Ring Fitness Tracker on Amazon!

6) EverSleep 5-in-1 Sleep Tracker

EverSleep 5-in-1 Sleep Tracker ReviewThis 5-in-1 sleep device claims to be more accurate than many sleep trackers. It is a little different from the other “wearables” on this list because it doesn’t track 24/7 health data; you only wear this device at bedtime.

This device attaches at the wrist and has a pulse oximeter that remains attached to the end of the finger throughout the night. Although this may be uncomfortable for some people, it promises a more accurate measure of respiration and heart-rate throughout the night. Although this device is NOT FDA regulated, it could potentially detect the first signs of sleep apnea.

Choose this device if you want a highly accurate sleep tracker, and you’re not likely to be bothered by a finger attachment.

Sleep Tracking Features

  • Sleep monitoring (tracks duration and awakenings)
  • Sleep cycle analysis
  • Detects snoring/teeth grinding
  • Measures blood oxygen (using a pulse oximeter)
  • Personalized sleep coaching

How Does the EverSleep 5-in-1 tracker Measure Sleep?

This device measures respiration, snoring, heart rate, movement and blood oxygen. As with many of the other devices on this list, Eversleep uses PPG to measure heart-rate. However, they also use a pulse oximeter (attached to the finger) to obtain a measure of the body’s oxygen content. A low oxygen reading at certain stages during the night could indicate a sleep disorder.

Also, this tracker features a 3-axis accelerometer to measure micro-motions in your arms as you sleep. It also has a recorder to detect snoring and teeth grinding.

What Does the Output Data Look Like?

To track your data, you’ll need to connect the device to your smartphone (It supports both Android and IOS).

The output app provides detailed graphs for pulse rate, movements, oxygen level, and sleep quality. Depending on your sleep data, this app provides personalized sleep coaching. Also, this app can help you track your recovery cycles from sports training.

Pros

Although some wristbands use PPG to measure heart-rate, this device uses a finger-tip pulse oximeter to measure blood oxygen. This is likely to give a more accurate reading of heart activity.

Cons

This sleep tracker is not as comfortable as other wearables.

Find Out About the EverSleep 5-in-1 Sleep Tracker on Amazon!

What Are the Best Non-Wearable Sleep Trackers?

1) Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor

The Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor is an affordable sleep-tracking system that can work with any mattress or bed. You place the sensor under the mattress and allow the processor to sit on the floor underneath your bed. Uniquely, this non-wearable sleep system can track two people’s sleep at once!

Choose this tracker if you have a non-standard bed (i.e., adjustable bed, specialized mattress) and you have a partner who is also keen to track their sleep.

Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor Review

Sleep Tracking Features

  • Measures sleep duration (including awakenings)
  • Sleep stage analysis
  • Tracks respiration-rate throughout the night
  • Bespoke AI sleep coaching
  • Smart-alarm – wakes you at an optimal time

How Does the Beautyrest Sleeptracker Measure Sleep?

This device measures micro body movements, heart rate, and respiration rate. The bed sensors use piezoelectric technology (i.e., they measure pressure) to collect this information. This system uses a cloud-based AI system to interpret your sleep data.

What Does the Output Data Look Like?

To access your data, you’ll need to download the Sleeptracker app. Home WIFI is required to sync the data between the sleep tracker and the app.

The app is incredibly simple to use. If you’re looking for some quick stats, the app can provide you with a ‘sleep efficiency score.’ If you’re looking for more detailed metrics, it can also provide you detailed reports of your light, deep, and REM sleep. The app also offers bespoke sleep coaching – and warns you when you’re slipping out of your routine.

The data from Sleeptracker integrates seamlessly with Apple Health for IOS devices.

Pros

  • Works on any bed/mattress/bedding
  • Can measure sleep for two people – offering excellent value for money
  • The app does not just track your sleep. It is geared towards offering ways to improve your sleep

Cons

  • As with all non-wearables, this system doesn’t offer 24/7 health tracking. Having said that, if you have an IOS smartphone, the data integrates well with Apple Health, so you can see how daily activities are affecting sleep and vice versa.
  • Sleep detection is not automatic – you need to tell the app (via your smartphone) that you’re going to sleep.

Find Out About the Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor on Amazon!

2) ResMed S+ by Personal Sleep Solution

ResMed S+ by Personal Sleep Solution ReviewThis sleep tracker is one of the few devices that is completely detached from the body and the bed. The ResMed S+ sits on the bedside and has the appearance of a minimalist bedside lamp. According to Personal Sleep Solutions, 69% of uses improved their sleep significantly after just one week of use.

Choose this sleep tracker if you want a discreet, non-invasive sleep tracker that can also detect light, noise, and temperature in your bedroom.

Sleep Tracking Features

  • Measures sleep duration
  • Sleep cycle analysis
  • Customized tips for improving sleep
  • Smart-alarm
  • Detects light, noise, and temperature to see how they impact sleep
  • ‘Relax to sleep’ feature – synchronizes sounds with your breathing to help you relax
  • ‘Mind clear’ feature– allows you to fill in a to-do list to help clear your mind

How Does the ResMed S+ Measure Sleep?

This sleep system has a bio-motion sensor to detect breathing (chest expanding and relaxing) and movements during sleep. This information is used to predict how much time is spent in each sleep stage. This company keeps particularly quiet about the exact methods they use to collect their data!

What Does the Output Data Look Like?

To access your sleep data, you’ll need to download the accompanying app on your smartphone. When you go to bed, you do need to notify the device that you are going to sleep (via the smartphone app) so that it can start tracking your sleep.

The app creates daily sleep scores indicating the length and quality of your sleep. The app is very user-friendly and provides a sleep coaching section to help improve your sleep.

Unlike most other sleep trackers, the output data lets you see how noise, temperature, and light have affected your sleep.

Pros

  • Easy-to-use app
  • Measures light, temperature, and noise
  • ‘Relax to sleep’ and ‘mind clear’ functions help you to relax
  • Modern design (doesn’t have the appearance of a sleep tracker)

Cons

  • Sleep detection is not automatic – you need to tell the app you are going to sleep.

Find Out About the ResMed S+ by Personal Sleep Solution on Amazon!

3) Emfit QS

The Emfit QS is a highly accurate sleep-tracking device that is installed underneath the mattress. Essentially, this device can tell you how well-rested you are, and how ready you are to engage in sports (based on sophisticated heart-tracking data). With more than 15 years in the business, the accuracy offered by Emfit is second to none.

Choose this device if you are a keen athlete looking to improve your performance through targeted sleep. Moreover, choose this device if you’d like a non-wearable sleep tracker than has automatic sleep detection.

Emfit QS Review

Sleep Tracking Features                               

  • Automatic sleep detection (measures sleep duration and awakenings)
  • Sleep stage analysis
  • Detailed heart-rate readings (including heart-rate variability)
  • Recovery Insights (tells you when to get more rest, and when you should train harder)

How Does the Emfit QS Measure Sleep?

This device primarily measures movements, heart-rate, and heart-rate variability to establish how well-rested you are.

Heart-rate variability refers to beat-to-beat changes in heart-rate. HRV is a measure of fitness and should trend upwards after a good training session. If it trends downwards, this is a sign of stress and tells the user they should cut back on training.

Unlike other non-wearables, Emfit QS measures the body’s vibrations to infer details about heart -rate, HRV, and respiration rate. This process is referred to as ballistocardiography. The company put the data into machine learning algorithms to test and verify their data.

What Does the Output Data Look Like?

Uniquely, this device doesn’t need to be paired with a smartphone app to sync the data. It has its own internal WIFI. This means it can support automatic sleep detection – you don’t need to tell the device you are going to sleep.

The data is fed into an app that can be accessed by mobile, tablet or computer. It is one of the most sophisticated and detailed outputs you’re likely to see.

The output data gives you a complete breakdown of your sleep, and all your cardiopulmonary functions. If you’re looking for a device that shows you your heart activity throughout the night – you won’t get better than this

Pros

  • Stress-free tracking – Some people claim sleep trackers are dangerous because we spend too much time tracking our sleep. The Emfit QS is completely unattached to your body and offers automatic sleep detection (no turning apps on-and-off), so it takes the stress out of sleep tracking.
  • Heart-rate data is extremely accurate
  • If you are an athlete, this device will stop you overtraining.

Cons

  • Although Emfit QS provides a fantastic output, it doesn’t provide much coaching, so you’ll need to do some of the interpretative work on your own.

Find Out About the Emfit QS on Amazon!

4) Nokia Sleep Tracking Pad

The Nokia Sleep Tracking Pad is another contactless tracking device that sits underneath your mattress. Like the Emfit QS, this is one of the few non-wearables that tracks sleep automatically. Uniquely, this product can control other smart devices in the home (i.e., lights and music) through IFTTT integration.

Choose this if you want an affordable non-wearable device that tracks sleep automatically.

Nokia Sleep Tracking Pad Review

Sleep Tracking Features

  • Automatic sleep detection (tracks sleep duration)
  • Sleep cycle analysis
  • Detects snoring!
  • ‘Sleep smarter’ program

How Does the Nokia Sleep Tracking Pad Measure Sleep?

The Nokia Sleep Tracking Pad also uses ballistocardiography to measure sleep quality. The system monitors breathing, movement, and heart-rate.

What Does the Output Data Look Like?  

To access your sleep insights, you’ll need to download the user-friendly Nokia HealthMate app. As mentioned, this is an excellent app that integrates well with Apple Health (IOS) and Google Fit (Android).

You’ll gain access to a sleep smarter programme which will offer you personalized advice on improving sleep.

Pros

  • Automatic sleep detection at a more affordable price than Emfit QS
  • Fairly easy to set up
  • Nokia Healthmate app is very easy to use and integrates with other ‘daytime’ activity apps via a service like AppSyncer – giving you access to 24/7 health data in one place.

Cons

  • Using a thick wedge or memory foam pillow may interrupt this device

Find Out About the Nokia Sleep Tracking Pad on Amazon!

What Is the Future for Sleep Tracking?

As we know, wearable health trackers are useful tools to help interpret our sleep, but they are not FDA approved clinical tools. As such, they cannot diagnose sleep conditions such as sleep apnea.

According to various press releases from Fitbit, this may change in the near future. In the last year or so, we’ve seen Fitbit install SPO2 sensors in their trackers. SPO2 sensors measure oxygen saturation. As we know, people with sleep apnea experience breathing obstructions during their sleep, so their oxygen levels dip throughout certain sleep stages.

If a wrist tracker could be developed that accurately measured oxygen saturation throughout the night, it may be able to diagnose sleep disorders such as sleep apnea.

At this time, Fitbit seems to be collecting data from SPO2 sensors in their wristbands, but they are not releasing this information to consumers, as this technology is still being developed. But, as CNBC report, Fitbit states that it is a combination of this SPO2 sensor, along with advanced machine learning, which will make diagnosing sleep apnea a real possibility!

Which Sleep Tracker Should I Buy in 2018?

Hopefully, this review has introduced you to the pros and cons of sleep trackers on offer in 2018. As we’ve discussed, wearable wrist trackers offer 24/7 circadian data, but non-wearables should not necessarily be overlooked as some newer models offer incredible accuracy. If you’re still confused about which device to purchase, ask yourself the following questions.

  • Do I want to improve my overall fitness as well as track my sleep? If so, opt for the Fitbit Versa, Huawei Pro Band 2, or the Emfit Qs.
  • Am I interested in measuring snoring/sleep talking/teeth grinding? If so, opt for a the Eversleep 5-in-1 Sleep Tracker, or the Nokia Sleep Tracking Pad.
  • Do I spend a fair few nights away from home? If so, opt for a 24/7 wrist health tracker or the Motiv Ring.
  • Do my daily activities/routines change a lot? If so, opt for a 24/7 wrist or ring tracker, so you can see the daily impact activities have on your sleep.
  • I’m not sure if my bedroom is too hot/cold/light/dark – Opt for the Resmed S+.
  • Would it bother me if I had to charge my device regularly? If so, you might be better suited to a non-wearable bed system or choose the Nokia Steel HR Hybrid.
  • Do I want automatic sleep detection? Wrist devices tend to do this better, but you could also try the Emfit QS or Nokia Sleep Tracking Pad.
  • Am I on a budget? If so, opt for the Huawei Pro Band 2, or Fitbit Alta HR.

Whichever device you choose, be sure to track your sleep regularly and make use of your personalized sleep recommendations. This will ensure you reap the full benefits of sleep tracking.