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One of the simplest and most convenient ways to better understand your sleeping behavior to improve the quality of your sleep is with wearable sleep trackers. The Up by Jawbone is among the most popular sleep and fitness monitoring devices selling today and this Up by Jawbone review will set out to see whether it lives up to its reputation.
Ease of Use
Summary: As a multi-purpose device, the Up by Jawbone tracks your quality of sleep, burned calories, and various daily activities at an affordable price compared to some other models. But as a jack of all trades, it's better suited to those looking for general health information rather than detailed information in specific areas. This tracker is best used in the short-term as it's not particularly durable.
It wasn't that long ago that you'd have to check into a sleep center if you wanted to find out why you weren't sleeping as well as you could. In some cases, these sleep studies could last for days at a time as there weren't other options available. That is, of course, until sleep trackers came upon the scene...
These days, we can analyze our sleeping patterns simply by wearing a bracelet to bed and the Jawbone Up3 — the latest Up tracker by Jawbone — is one the many examples of wearable trackers that document movement and heart rate to analyze sleeping behaviors.
Note: Sleep trackers aren't a substitute for professional sleep studies when serious sleep conditions like sleep apnea are suspected (source).
As long as the device is charged and operating properly, the Jawbone Up3 does an adequate job at recording data like heart rate and movement through its external and embedded small sensors. Most people also happen to find it quite comfortable to wear.
That said, it loses major points for durability as most Up3 wristbands don't last beyond 3-12 months due to somewhat shoddy design:
One component of the Up3 that does last is its battery, which can run for about seven days before it needs to be charged, so that's one thing you won't have to worry about.
All in all, the Jawbone Up3 is a viable option for short-term use but anything longer than that, you're probably better off with one of its competitors (see below).
To use the Jawbone Up3, you simply clasp it to your wrist, turn it on, and you're ready to go. That said, it can take some getting used to as it doesn't have an easy-access screen to navigate directly on the bracelet itself.
Instead, you need to tap the bracelet to change modes, which are indicated by three LED lights (activity mode, sleep mode, and alarms/notifications). Switching modes requires you to tap on the face of the bracelet twice, which can be difficult and unresponsive at times, if not downright frustrating.
The accompanying Jawbone app, however, is one of the best attributes of the Up3. It features an attractive interface that uses charts and graphs to visually display recorded data after it's synced to the device. Moreover, the app also allows you to easily change the wristband settings directly from your smartphone, including the alarm time.
The Up3 has several key uses and features. The main distinguishing factor from competing products is its heart rate detector located on the inside of the band, which tracks your resting heart rate while you sleep to help you gain greater insight into your heart health.
Another standout feature of the Up3 is the Smart Coach, which offers personalized guidance to help you make healthier choices and provide motivation when needed.
The Up3 sleep tracking monitoring system is also useful. The device starts monitoring your sleep activity immediately once you're asleep, documenting each sleep phase and duration throughout the entire night. The Smart Alarm system can then track your sleep cycle to wake you up silently and at the optimal time so you wake up feeling refreshed instead of groggy and tired.
Once awake, you can review your night's sleep with the Jawbone app on your smartphone, which automatically syncs to the device. (As of now, no web dashboard exists to view recorded data on desktop computers).
While the Up3 is more than acceptable for basic sleep tracking, anything more than that may call for a device solely dedicated to sleep tracking instead (see below).
Compared to many other brands, the Jawbone Up3 is moderately priced. That said, the Up3 itself is significantly more expensive than previous Jawbone models since it includes more features like the heart rate monitor, Smart Alarm, and an upgraded clasp that prevents the band from slipping off during workouts and sleep.
Thus, when taking these new features into account, the price is relatively fair. But considering how often you might need to replace the device (perhaps once or twice per year), costs can really add up over time.
A leading competitor to the Jawbone Up3, the Misfit Shine 2 is another example of a wearable sleep and fitness tracker that monitors sleep phases and daily activities like the number of steps taken per day.
Unlike the Up3, there's no heart monitor or REM tracker but it does allow you to listen to music, take photos and more. Instead of a tappable bracelet, the Misfit features a light emitting tappable disc, which signals the different modes, options, and notifications.
Placed on top of your mattress, the Beddit 3 is a flat sleep monitoring system that measures sleep cycles, resting heart rate, and breathing, among other metrics.
The sensor starts interfacing with your smartphone as soon as you lie down, providing you with valuable data for analysis. The Beddit 3 is among the most popular and reputable sleep trackers currently available.
The Withings Aura is a bedside sleep monitor and alarm that uses a combination of light and sound to help you fall asleep faster and wake you up at the perfect time in your sleep cycle.
A sensor pad placed beneath your bed records your sleep data and is sent to your smartphone for easy analysis. While more complicated to use than most competitors, this device is arguably the most powerful sleep tracker on the market today.
Like the Beddit 3 and Withings Aura sleep trackers, the Early Sense Live is a standalone device that monitors sleep. But it's mainly intended for those with critical health problems, senior citizens, and small children.
Not only can it document and analyze vitals and sleeping information, it can even contact your physician quickly if dangerous changes are detected.
With so many sleep trackers to choose from, how do you know which one to pick? Well, it all starts with your goals. If you're looking for deep insight into your sleeping patterns, you're better off with a tracker specifically designed with this purpose in mind like the Withings Aura or Beddit 3. Either of these devices will provide you with the detailed sleep data you're looking for. Between these two, the Withings Aura has a slight edge over the Beddit 3.
If you'd like general statistics about your sleeping habits AND be able to monitor other daily activities like the number of steps you walk every day or the amount of calories you consume per meal, either the Misfit Shine 2 or Jawbone Up3 will probably serve you well. They also happen to be wearable devices, which are typically more convenient than stand-alone trackers. Between these two, the Misfit Shine 2 outperforms the Jawbone Up3.
The Early Sense Live sleep tracker is best suited to those with critical health conditions who call for around-the-clock monitoring.
While the Up3 by Jawbone definitely has its faults, the device does a reasonably good job at tracking daily activities like sleep cycles, heart rate, and the amount of calories burned per day. The wristband is also sleek and stylish and blends in well with casual attire. Thus, for short-term use, it's satisfactory but if durability is a deciding factor, you might want to check out one of the competitors mentioned instead.
What are your thoughts about the Jawbone Up3? Leave your comments below!
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