[UPDATE: WakeMate is no longer being sold]
WakeMate measures the quality of a person’s sleep based on actigraphy. It consists of a small accelerometer placed inside a soft elasticated wristband. The device is first charged for a few hours usings a mini-USB adapter. One charge lasts for about two nights of use if the device is switched off between uses. Before going to sleep, the user activates a small switch inside the unit tucked into the wristband and an LED appears. Then a custom app is activated–the device is factory set to work with only one mobile architecture, either Apple iOS, Android, or Blackberry. The user then makes sure the app has a bluetooth connection to the wristband and sets the desired wake time. As with other sleep monitoring devices, the software will sound an alarm in advance of the desired wake time if it detects the user is in a light sleep phase so that they are not accidentally woken from a deep sleep leaving them more groggy upon waking.
Ease of Use
The device and software are somewhat complicated to use because of the need to switch on and off, charge often, and the multiple button presses to activate the software and ensure a bluetooth connection is active.
This is one of the least expensive lifelogging devices available at time of writing at approximately US$60.
Although WakeMate is subscription free and provides unlimited access to user data on the website (or the app), there is no export function and I have found no way to scape data from the web interface, although their Wakelytics website does have the most comprehensive analysis of the actigraphy data that I have seen compared to other devices. They also allow comparison with the whole Wakemate user base. When I use the device, I often appear in the top 10 and will therefore campaign for sleeping to be entered as an Olympic sport.
Here is a sample of the within user comparison bar chart showing sleep pattern over successive days:
The WakeMate is less intrusive than the FitBit wrist strap but more tricky to operature as you have to flick a small microswitch, then fire up an app on your phone, make sure Bluetooth is on, then press a button at the right time and the battery only lasts about 2 nights so there is a lot of re-charging involved. It does produce more fine-grained data than the FitBit and is less expensive, but the electronics seem a little unreliable, as mine stopped working after a few months. At time of writing there was no data export facility.