After getting all sci-fi with the introduction of sonar as a revolutionary no-addon sensor to be used for sleep tracking more than a year ago, you might think there’s nothing left on your smartphone that could enhance sleep tracking further.
Let’s shed some light on this!
You guessed it – we’re introducing usage of the ambient light sensor so you can find out whether you sleep better in light or dark conditions.
Light level on your sleep graph
When you enable the light sensor usage (by enabling awake detection), you’ll get ambient light line on your sleep graph, similar to how we already show heart rates or breath rates. The line shows how the light level was changing during the night, in absolute units (lux).
Measuring in absolute units is very important, since we are then able to tell not only change, but whether your bedroom is dark or there is a disturbing light in there that could affect your sleep.
When you measure your bedroom light with Sleep as Android, you’ll be able to experiment and gather statistics on how well you sleep in different light conditions.
Automatic light-based tagging
For very bright nights (at lest 30% of the night over 60 LUX) we do automatically add a #light tag to your sleep. The same goes for very dark nights (90% of the night is under 30 LUX) where we add #dark.
You can use those tags to do your own study on how light affects your sleep score metrics.
Using light for awake detection
Light measurement also gives a nice hint to the awake detection. When there is significant light (over 30 LUX) in your bedroom after sunset we consider this an awake.
In a similar way light measurement enhances automatic sleep tracking – when we think you might be sleeping, we also check the light. If it’s after sunset, but your lights are still up, we’ll hold off the tracking start.
After adding light as another awake detection method we really had to break all the different approaches down and give you fine grained control about how your awake is determined, see below.
We are eagerly looking forward to your feedback on this new feature!
Since you now have light statistics, corelate it with ratings and sleep quality. As a prime researcher in this field, you know you Melatonin, the hormone responsible for sleep, is impacted by light levels. This will help your users to improve sleep quality and smart wakeup while help you make further progress with the large data available.