- Apple just announced a new sleep tracking tool for the Apple Watch during its Worldwide Developers Conference.
- Sleep tracking was one of the few few features the Apple Watch lacked compared to Fitbit and other rival fitness trackers.
- The Apple Watch will use motion sensors, heartbeat sensors, and microphones to keep track of how deeply users are sleeping throughout the night.
- The tool will also integrate with iPhone sleep tools, including a "wind down" lock screen displayed before bedtime and a "sleep mode" display at night.
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Apple is finally launching a sleep tracking tool for the Apple Watch, addressing a key area in which it's lagged behind Fitbit and other smartwatch rivals.
Apple made the announcement during its Worldwide Developers Conference on Monday. Apple Watch sleep tracking will integrate with existing iPhone sleep tools, including a "wind down" lock screen displayed before bedtime and a "sleep mode" display at night.
While users sleep, the Apple Watch will use motion sensors, heartbeat sensors, and microphones to keep track of how deeply users are sleeping throughout the night. Users can then review that data later. The new Apple Watch features will become available when Watch OS 7 is rolled out this fall.
Sleep tracking is one of the only key features the Apple Watch has lacked compared to wearable devices from competitors like Fitbit — which Google recently acquired — Garmin, and others.
Third-party sleep tracking apps are available for the Apple Watch, but some of them cost money and none are directly integrated with the Apple Watch by default. Monday's announcement marks the first time Apple has unveiled a sleep tracking app of its own, coming after Bloomberg reported in 2019 that the tech giant was working on sleep tracking technology.
The announcement marks another step in the Apple Watch's evolution from being a smartwatch with some health-related features to a comprehensive health and wellness device. Apple has gradually closed the gap between the Apple Watch's features and those offered on devices made by Fitbit, a company with origins in digital health and one of Apple's biggest competitors in the space.
Last year, for example, Strategy Analytics.