I’ve been casually tracking my sleep for years. Still, I decided to do it consistently after realizing the effect of sleep deprivation on my mental health. I spent $4.99 on the AutoSleep app, an Apple Watch tracker with many positive reviews. After using it for six months, I can confidently say it’s worth the purchase. In this post, I’ll explore the pros and cons (even though I recommend the app, there are some drawbacks) and the features I use most.
AutoSleep App Review
The most common question I get is whether paying for a third-party app is essential when Apple has built-in sleep-tracking functions. My response is that it’s up to personal choice, but the sleep tracking that AutoSleep offers is much more precise than using your Apple Watch on its own. I’ve found that it’s impressively accurate regarding my awake time, along with its tracking of my deep sleep.
The app uses algorithms and a heart rate tracker to deliver sleep data and compare trends. The screenshot below shows my sleep averages for the last month (aside from the days I vacationed without my watch charger). It’s great to have an easy way to notice trends and patterns, and the color-coded chart makes it easy for me to compare days.
This isn’t an ad for the company, but I really am impressed with how much the app offers you at such a low price tag. You can track your time asleep, sleep ratings, readiness, consistency, and more. You can even get recommendations for when to go to bed. I use this chart whenever my mood feels off — more often than not, my sleep has been wonky.
Below, you can see more data points from my own sleep history. The “sleep debt” feature is exciting. It tracks when you haven’t gotten enough sleep and shows the difference between the ideal amount and how much you slept. I make everything a competition, so I’ve been motivated to keep my debt at zero.
I don’t use all of these features regularly, but I appreciate that they’re there if I change my mind. Tracking quality sleep and determining when I drift off is enormously helpful for me. Even if you aren’t worried about rest for health reasons, it’s a dream for data nerds (like my husband, who loves the app).
No app is perfect, so AutoSleep has some drawbacks that I want to address. The first isn’t an AutoSleep problem — just the nature of using an Apple Watch for a tracker. You can’t charge your watch while you sleep, so tracking your steps and using the watch during the day can be tricky. I bought an Apple Watch charger for my office and charge my watch when I’m at my desk, so that’s an easy solution.
The other annoying thing is that the sleep tracking only works if your watch is unlocked. I’ve had nights where I forget to unlock my watch before bed and wake up to no sleep data. (Again, this may be the case for all sleep trackers — I haven’t used any others to compare.) I’ve also seen Reddit reviews that say the tracking isn’t accurate. While I haven’t had this problem, I wanted to mention it.