Shopping for a Sleep Tracker?
Here’s everything you need to know before buying one.
Sleep is a crucial part of every person's routine. Yet, some people struggle with catching enough hours of Zs, and this is where a sleep tracker can be of great help.
A sleep tracker helps monitor your sleep pattern to help you get an insight into how much quality sleep you get. With this information, you can optimize your sleep habits for a better sleep experience.
Today, there is a wide variety of sleep trackers available on the market.You can choose between numerous wearable sleep trackers and non-wearable sleep monitoring devices for this purpose.
And to help you find the best one, this guide tells you everything you need to know.
Why Do You Need a Sleep Tracker?
Whether you are an overworked employee, a college student, or a busy parent, a sleep tracker can help everyone get a good night’s sleep. From improved sleep to better health, investing in a sleep tracker has many benefits.
Here’s why you need a sleep tracker:
To track your sleep cycle
Sleep trackers are apt at tracking your lifestyle and sleep cycle. They basically use this data to devise an individual sleep pattern personalized according to your needs and schedule and show you how to get the best sleep so you don’t wake up feeling groggy, unrested or in a bad mood.
To adopt better sleeping habits
Sleep tracking can help you quit your bad sleeping habits and positively change your life, making it a healthier lifestyle. A sleep tracker shows you your sleep data at a glance, so you can take the right steps to improve your sleep efficiency.
To improve the waking up experience
Tired of waking up abruptly and unrested to the sound of shrill alarms?
Many sleep monitoring devices, like the Eight Sleep Smart Bed, incorporate smart alarms that wake you up during the lightest period of your sleep within half an hour of the time you’ve set for your alarm.
Instead of waking up groggy, they allow you to wake up rested and fresh, ready to take on the day.
To obtain accurate sleep data
Not sure about the exact cause of your sleep problems?
A sleep tracker can help you determine the reasons behind your sleep-related issues. All the data it provides is highly accurate and reliable, so you can use it to enhance your sleep experience.
What’s in this Buying Guide
This buying guide explains everything about sleep trackers.
We review some of the best sleep trackers available on the market and compare these options against each other.
We also explain how they work, the different types of sleep trackers, and what to consider when shopping for a sleep tracker.
In the end, we also answer common questions about sleep trackers too.
Meanwhile, if you or your loved one sleep too hot or too cold, you can check out our review of the Sleep Pod Cooling System.
Best Sleep Trackers
- Best Wearable Sleep Tracker: Fitbit Versa 2
- Best Non-Wearable Sleep Tracker: Withings Sleep – Sleep Tracking Pad
- Best Sleep Tracking Watch: Amazfit GTS 2
- Best Headband Style Sleep Tracker: MUSE S: The Brain Sensing Headband
- Best for Couples: Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor
- Best for Babies: Owlet – Smart Sock 3 Monitor
Disclaimer: All links below go to Amazon.com
|Sleep Tracker||Award||Type||Dimensions||Weight||Suitable for||Power Source|
|Fitbit Versa 2 ||Best Wearable Sleep Tracker||Smartwatch||1.56 x 1.59 x 0.47 inches||0.16 ounces||Individual Use||Battery-operated – 6+ days battery life|
|Withings Sleep – Sleep Tracking Pad||Best Non-Wearable Sleep Tracker||Mattress Pad||24.4 x 7.4 x 0.19 inches||9.6 ounces||Individual or Couple Use||Corded Electric|
|Amazfit GTS 2||Best Sleep Tracking Watch||Smartwatch||1.59 x 1.4 x 0.41 inches||1.12 ounces||Individual Use||Battery-operated – 14 days battery life|
|MUSE S: The Brain Sensing Headband||Best Headband Style Sleep Tracker||Headband||20 x 0.25 x 2.44 inches||0.75 pounds||Individual Use||Battery Operated – 10 hours battery life|
|Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor||Best for Couples||No contact Device||3.5 x 3.25 x 1 inches||1 pounds||Couple Use||Electric Corded|
| Owlet – Smart Sock 3 Monitor||Best for Babies||Sock||7.8 x 5.6 x 3.4 inches||0.43 Kilograms||0 to 18-month babies||Battery Operated – 16 hours battery life|
1. Best Wearable Sleep Tracker: Fitbit Versa 2
The Fitbit Versa 2 is one of the best wearable sleep trackers. It provides accurate sleep analysis and offers multiple functionalities. It is a complete health and fitness gadget that keeps track of your sleeping habits as well as your lifestyle activities.
It is easy to put on, incorporates an adjustable band, and is available in various colors. You can choose one from the regular collection or go for one from the special edition.
The Versa 2 has a long battery life that lasts for more than 6 days on a single recharge.
- Automatic and accurate sleep reporting
- Compatible with 200+ leading iOS and Android devices
- Built-in Amazon Alexa support
- Large, touch-sensitive display
- The display supports an ‘always on’ option
- Stops syncing beyond 6.1 meters
- Requires Fitbit premium subscriptions for detailed sleep tracking
This Fitbit smartwatch is a stylish gadget with a bright and vibrant 1.4-inch OLED screen and an adjustable band. It does not become dull even in bright sunlight, and the interface is pretty user-friendly.
The hardware is also quite sturdy.
Fitbit Versa 2 comes in an amazing range of colors to choose from. And if you find those too boring, you can choose from the special edition printed belts.
The Fitbit Versa 2 is one of the most accurate sleep tracking devices currently available on the market. It collects information about heart rate, movement, and sleep data.
The compatible Fitbit app presents each sleep stage in a detailed and easy-to-understand graphical state.
All the information Versa 2 provides is very helpful for reassurance as well as for offering clues to some underlying issue.
Lastly, the long battery life allows you to use the Versa 2 for days at a time on a single full charge.
2. Best Non-Wearable Sleep Tracker: Withings Sleep – Sleep Tracking Pad
If you want an in-depth analysis of your slumber, the Sleep Tracking Pad from Withings Sleep is a good option.
It is a non-wearable sleep tracker that slips and lays underneath your mattress and detects the physical signs as you sleep. Once it gathers the information, the Withings Sleep Tracking pad sends a detailed sleep analysis to your smartphone.
The Withings pad tracks all the basics: sleep duration in each phase, interruptions, and heart rate. Since it lies under the mattress, you don’t have to compromise your comfort.
You can also choose to buy it for your personal use or as a pair for both you and your loved one.
- The non-wearable design does not compromise on comfort
- Both the pad and HealthMate app are easy to set up
- Plug-and-play functionality
- Offers personalized sleep coaching
- Supports IFTTT integration with Alexa
- Occasionally mistakes relaxing in bed as sleep
- You need to carefully tap on the graph to bring up more data, which can be cumbersome
The Withings Sleep Pad collects an impressive amount of data. The thin mat slips under the mattress, but it provides a fairly accurate sleep assessment by recording changes in pressure and noise during the night.
Whether you sleep on your side, back, or stomach, this Withings Sleep tracking pad gets everything it needs without making the slightest contact.
You have to place the Withings Pad under your mattress, and once you plug it in, it automatically starts recording your vital parameters, such as heart rate, breathing rate, and movements with its unobtrusive sensors.
Once it records all the parameters, an exclusive algorithm processes it to present the most accurate and advanced insights of your night.
You can view the daily report on the compatible Withings Health Mate app or ask Alexa to check in with the process.
This Withings Pad also features IFTTT integration to create an ambient sleeping environment.
3. Best Sleep Tracking Watch: Amazfit GTS 2
Amazfit GTS 2 is our pick for the best sleep tracking watch, especially because it provides accurate results and has long battery life.
The GTS 2 Mini is a stylish device that features a square display with rounded edges. It also comes in numerous colors, so you can easily pick up the one you like.
The Amazfit is very comfortable to wear throughout the night. It senses when you are asleep or awake. Besides nighttime sleep, it also records naps and evening sleeps.
- It offers a borderless visual experience
- Monitors oxygen saturation, stress levels, and heart rate
- Light and very comfortable
- Presents complete sleep information, including nap times
- Connects with Amazon Alexa
- Not compatible with third-party apps
- Low refresh rate
Originally introduced as an affordable alternative to its full-sized version, the Amazfit GTS 2 Mini is essentially a smartwatch that is also useful as a sleep tracker.
It uses data obtained by heart rate monitoring, oxygen saturation, and stress level management.
GTS 2 Mini also assesses your sleep breathing quality through the light, deep, and REM sleep stages and presents a detailed analysis to help improve your sleep quality.
The Amazfit GTS 2 Mini has a compact and lightweight design. It is easy to keep on in bed and does not snag at the bedding.
The silicon strap is sturdy enough and is available in various colors, including regular ones like black, blue, and gray to uncommon ones like moss green and lilac purple.
It has a long battery life that lasts for up to 14 days on a full charge.
4. Best Headband-Style Sleep Tracker: MUSE S: The Brain Sensing Headband
MuseS originallycame out as a meditation device that guides you through various audio classes and meditation routines while tracking your brain activity.
After a recent software update, the Muse S also works as a good sleep tracking solution.
The Muse S sleep tracker is comfortable to wear and very easy to use. Once you put the soft headband on your forehead, it starts tracking your brain activity, heart rate, and movement to track your sleep stages.
You can view the night’s progress in the compatible Muse app. It plots all the metrics in a line graph against time, and you get a percentage score for each metric except the heart rate.
- Comfortable and unobtrusive
- Soothing audio tracks encourage better sleep
- It helps you fall asleep
- Compatible with most Android and iOS devices
- Battery lasts for a single night
- Requires app subscription
The Muse S is a sleep tracking wearable headband that comes with its own app. The material is very soft and comfortable to sleep with.
This brain-sensing headband features 2 sensors just above the ears and 5 on the forehead that report the brain activity and physical signs to the main sensing device located on your forehead. It is detachable, so you can easily wash the band when necessary.
Since it is essentially a meditation device, Muse S really helps you get a good night’s sleep. It comes with a wide range of 10-20-minute audios featuring calming sounds that really help you relax.
The audios are best enjoyed with wireless earphones on. Once the track is over, you can take the earbuds out and go to sleep. That’s when the Muse S starts sleep tracking.
It collects the readings of your body – EEG (brainwaves), heart rate, body movement, and breathing and analyses your condition. If you are anxious, it will send sound cues to help you relax and reach a calmer mind state.
It displays all the data it collects on a line graph in the Muse app. You also receive a personalized sleep efficiency score, as well as sleep staging, deep sleep insights and points, sleep positioning, heart rate and stillness.
5. Best for Couples: Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor
The Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor is a non-wearable sleep tracking device that works with any mattress type. It is especially directed towards couples who want to keep track of their sleeping habits without influencing each other’s results.
The Beautyrest device can record data for two persons independently and display the results on their corresponding devices.
A smart alarm feature wakes you up at the optimal time without making you groggy. Plus, it uses the data collected via the Sleeptracker app to provide personalized tips to improve sleep quality.
The Beautyrest sleep tracker is Alexa-enabled, making it easy to integrate into your smart home.
- Collects sleep data for two persons
- Reports are easy to read and understand
- Simple set up
- Provides daily sleep coaching advice
- Unobtrusive device slips inside the mattress
- May mistake being awake in bed for light sleep
- Detailed reports require a subscription
As the name suggests, the Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor ensures you get your optimum beauty rest. It is a non-wearable sleep monitoring device that comes with a hardware processor and two sleep tracking pads.
The Beautyrest sleep tracking pads slip beneath your mattress and connect to the processor via a cable. The processor, in turn, connects to a standard power outlet. Although the device is targeted for couple usage, you can choose to connect only a single pad too.
Once assembled, setting the Beautyrest device is fairly easy. It comes with a compatible Beautyrest Sleeptracker app that contains all the videos guiding you through the entire procedure.
Once it successfully syncs, the Sleeptracker automatically keeps track of the heart rate, respiration, and unique sleep behaviors such as body movement and wakefulness.
You can see all the data on the app in the form of bar charts. It breaks down your night into sleep stages. Beautyrest Sleeptracker also shows how your heart rate and breathing correspond to these sleep stages with two progress lines below the chart. It also includes your sleep score out of 100.
6. Best for Babies: Owlet – Smart Sock 3 Monitor
Worried about your little one’s sleep health?
The Owlet – Smart Sock 3 monitors your baby as you both sleep. It keeps an eye on his vitals like heart rate, oxygen saturation, and total hours of sleep. If any of the readings drop below the ‘safe zone,’ the Owlet Smart Sock promptly notifies you to check in on your baby.
The sock is pretty easy to put on without being hurtful or uncomfortable for the baby. You can choose your Owlet from various colors, including pink, blue, and mint green. The sock is compatible with most smartphones, so setting it isn’t an issue either.
- It lasts for up to 16 hours on a single charge
- Charges quickly within 90 minutes
- Pulse-oximetry technology is safe for babies
- Sends alerts when readings drop below the safe zone
- Keeps you informed about the baby’s vitals
- Can send out false alerts
The Owlet – Smart Sock 3 Monitor is that it alerts you immediately if the baby's heart rate or oxygen levels ever go out of the pre-programmed norms.
The red alerts come directly to your phone and to the base station, so there is little chance of you missing it.
The Owlet sock connects to your phone, so you can check on the baby even if you are away.
The Owlet sock attentively monitors the baby’s physical signs to keep track of total hours slept, sleep quality rating, how many times he woke up, and the longest sleep segment. You can also look back at the previous report to better understand the sleep trend.
Since the device is made to facilitate parents, the Owlet sleep monitoring sock not only has a long battery life but also charges very quickly.
You can drop it on the base station to charge wirelessly. You can get up to 8 hours of sleep tracking with only 20 minutes of charging. A full charge, however, takes about 90 minutes.
Sleep Tracker Buying Guide
What is a Sleep Tracker – and How Does it Work?
A sleep tracker is an advanced machine that detects your sleep patterns to offer insight into improving your sleep quality.
While lab-based sleep tests detect these patterns by observing your brain activity, sleep trackers rely on sensors that observe physical data like heart rate, breathing, and body movements.
So how does a sleep tracker work?
A wearable sleep tracking device senses physical signs like the heartbeat, breathing rate, and body movements, while a non-wearable tracker uses echolocation to obtain this data unobtrusively.
Nearly all sleep trackers upload this data to a device that runs it through an algorithm to analyze and determine when you are asleep or awake.
Sleep trackers provide accurate and consistent results, so you can obtain a personalized sleep pattern from the comfort of your home without having to spend a night at a laboratory.
Why Buy a Sleep Tracker?
A sleep tracker is a smart and convenient way to obtain accurate sleep analysis. You can use the data to adopt better sleep habits to wake up refreshed and well-rested.
Here are some other reasons why you should buy one:
Improve sleep quality
You can use your sleep tracking device to keep track of your sleep cycle. With this information, you can devise strategies to improve the quality of your sleep. Developing a good night-time routine allows you to sleep deeply so that you wake up feeling fresh and recharged.
Track hours of sleep
The primary task of a sleep tracker is to track your hours of sleep. The hours of sleep that a person needs per night varies, and monitoring your sleep shows you the ideal number of hours you personally need each night.
Troubled sleep really decreases your productivity the following day. Using a sleep tracker helps improve your productivity by ensuring that you get adequate and restful sleep.
Sleep trackers with smart alarms also wake you up gently so you do not feel groggy.
Help address sleep-related issues
While it is not diagnostic, a sleep monitor’s tracking capabilities can detect snoring and demonstrate patterns of restless sleep cycles. You can use the data to conduct important conversations with your doctors to screen for sleep apnea and other sleep-related concerns.
Types of Sleep Trackers
While there are many models and variations of sleep trackers available on the market, they can be widely categorized into two categories; wearable sleep trackers and non-wearable sleep trackers.
Wearable Sleep Trackers
As the name suggests, wearable sleep trackers are devices that you put on your body. They are available as watches, rings, wristbands, and headbands. Many of these often double as fitness trackers to record your physical activities throughout the day.
Non-wearable sleep trackers don’t go over your body. Instead, they either go underneath your bed or stay on the side table to record your sleep cycle.
You can choose between pads, sensing devices, and even sleep monitoring mattresses. They usually connect with your smartphone via apps to display the data.
What to Look for in a Sleep Tracker
Given the different forms of sleep trackers available, it can be hard to settle on one. To make things easier, below are a few features you need to look for when buying a sleep tracker.
As mentioned above, sleep trackers are of 2 types: wearable and non-wearable. Your choice depends on whether you want to wear the sleep tracker on your body or have it record the data unobtrusively.
Many people believe wearable sleep trackers are more accurate, but there’s no concrete evidence or studies that back this up. So, it all comes down to your comfort.
If you are comfortable wearing something on your wrist, finger, or head, then go for a wearable sleep tracker. But if you find such sleep accessories inconvenient, you can invest your money in a non-contact sleep tracker.
Nearly all sleep monitoring devices have small display screens to show metrics.
Meanwhile, non-wearable bed monitors come with compatible smartphone apps where you can view your complete sleep analysis.
When choosing the best wearable sleep monitoring device, ensure that the display screen is large enough to understand the data.
As for contact-free sleep trackers, make sure that the accompanying smartphone app is compatible with your phone and boasts a user-friendly interface with good reviews.
Most sleep trackers sync with their compatible apps to send you daily notifications about your sleep quality and routine. For this purpose, some require you to pay a monthly subscription fee, while others are free to download.
Devices that offer helpful insight to improve your sleep routine and overall sleep quality offer more value, even if they come for a small cost. Most of the free trackers only provide limited, unactionable information, so you can’t really do anything about it.
The build material of a sleep monitor is very important to consider, especially when it comes to a wearable model.
Before making the purchase, make sure that the device is comfortable to wear 24/7. Most feature a minimal design with adjustable wristbands in a variety of colors. But make sure that the material is non-irritating and you are not allergic to anything.
On the other hand, most non-wearables are either a thin strip, fabric pad, or a thin cover that lies on your mattress. Make sure it is comfortable to lie on and does not change your mattress’s feel.
Similarly, sleep trackers that sit on your bed stand should be sturdy and durable enough to withstand accidental falls.
Most wearable sleep trackers are battery-operated. Meanwhile, most non-wearable ones require a power outlet, while a few require USB charging.
If you only want to use your sleep monitoring device for sleep tracking, there’s nothing to worry about, as most are designed to last at least through the night.
However, if you plan to use the device to track your activity throughout the day, then you need to consider the battery life.
Sleep trackers record an array of data to predict your sleep pattern. This includes heart rate, heart rate variability, respiration, snoring, time awake, time sleeping, sleep interruptions, and body temperature.
Some high-end units also detect room temperature, humidity, noise level, and light. Using the data, they also provide tips for the most restful sleep.
When shopping for a suitable sleep tracking device, pay attention to the specific product details to find an option that collects the information you are interested in the most.
Benefits of Using Sleep Trackers
Sleep trackers tell you the state of your sleep and offer you insight on how you can get a more restful one. Here are some more benefits of using one:
- Enables you to practice a better sleeping routine
- It helps you learn about your optimum hours of sleep per night
- The smart alarm feature wakes you up feeling refreshed
- Advices you to create an ambient room environment for the best sleep
- Provides detailed analytics of your sleep pattern
- It helps point out a sleep disorder you don’t know about yet
- It enables you to tackle sleep-related issues in a better way
Frequently Asked Questions
Does a sleep tracker record data if the power goes out briefly overnight?
Unfortunately, electrically-powered sleep trackers cannot work during a power outage. These devices need to stay plugged in to record data ad require a continuous, uninterrupted power supply.
However, if you have a battery-operated sleep tracker, then a power outage won’t affect its functioning. It will continue to record data normally unless, of course, if the battery dies.
Does my phone need to be in the same room as my sleep monitoring device to track my sleep?
No, your phone does not necessarily have to be in the same room as your sleep tracker to monitor your sleep, and you can even put it away in a separate room. As long as both are synced with each other and have network connectivity, the devices will continue to collaborate to track your sleep cycles.
Do I have to wear a specific device to bed for using my sleep tracker?
It really depends upon the type of sleep tracker you have.
A wearable sleep tracker can be a ring, a watch, a wristband, a sock, or a headband that you have to wear to bed.
Meanwhile, a no-contact sleep tracker slips under the bed or sets it on the nightstand to monitor your sleep.
Will the sleep tracker data be affected if a partner shares my bed?
Again, this depends upon the type of sleep tracker you have.
In the case of a wearable sleep tracker, sharing the bed with a partner won’t significantly impact the data it records. But if you have a non-wearable one, your partner’s physical signs may affect the data collection.
Final Verdict: What is the Best Sleep Tracker Sold Today?
Although sleep trackers are not medical diagnostic devices, they can help facilitate underlying medical issues.
After looking at the vast range of sleep tracking devices, we believe that the Fitbit Versa 2 is the best sleep tracker that provides accurate sleep analysis.
Meanwhile, the Withings Sleep – Sleep Tracking Pad is one of the best and most accurate non-wearable sleep trackers.
Lastly, if you want a sleep monitor for your baby, Owlet – Smart Sock 3 Monitor is a good option that is easy to use and provides prompt alerts.
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