How to Use the Pillow App on iOS to Analyze and Improve Your Sleep

Sleep is one of the most essential human needs. The healing and restorative processes that happen during sleep allow both body and mind to recharge and recover for the day ahead. And sleep deficiency has been linked to numerous health complications.

If you own an Apple Watch, you’ll already have access to the built-in Sleep app. But that only provides basic data on time spent asleep. Pillow is an iPhone and Apple Watch app that promises a more detailed sleep analysis. Here’s what you should know before you decide if it’s worth the subscription.


What Is Pillow?

Pillow is a sleep tracker for Apple devices that automatically analyses your sleep cycles. Pillow claims it can “help you uncover the scientifically proven benefits of good sleep.” The app boasts a vast range of features, but the most important is the level of detail in which it measures every aspect of your sleep. You will wake up with a complete sleep analysis by wearing Apple Watch to be, placing your iPhone or iPad under your pillow, or using a combination of both.

Download: Pillow (Free, subscription available)

Detailed Sleep Analysis in Pillow

Pillow measures sleep statistics in high detail, including these metrics:

  • Time in bed
  • Sleep duration
  • Sleep quality
  • Detailed sleep stage analysis (Awake, REM, Light Sleep, Deep Sleep)
  • Detailed heart rate analysis
  • Blood oxygen
  • Respiratory rate

Each metric can be analyzed using weekly, monthly, or yearly views in the Pillow app. Data is presented in a clear format, allowing you to see trends and patterns in your sleep at a glance.

Getting a Full Sleep Picture

As well as recording your sleep data, Pillow analyzes the whole sleep environment. If you use Apple Watch Series 4 or later, it measures environmental audio and displays it on your sleep chart. You can see how sounds might have affected your sleep quality, even if they didn’t wake you.

If you start a sleep session manually instead of letting the Apple Watch sense your sleep automatically, the app will record sound events through your iPhone. These might include snoring, coughing, and sleep talking.

You can replay the audio recordings in the app, adding to the analysis of what might have disturbed a less-than-optimal night’s sleep. You are also encouraged to add your own sleep notes and record your mood when you wake up. Check out further advice on ways to sleep more peacefully.

Alarm Presets and Naps

Pillow features a smart alarm clock that aims to wake you up at the lightest possible sleep stage with your choice of music, sound, vibrations, or Apple Watch haptics.

There is also a Powernap feature, which aims to improve your mental performance and alertness by helping you take time to recharge during the day.

Relaxing Sounds in Pillow

Pillow includes an impressive collection of meditations, soundscapes, and stories to help you fall asleep. Mark your favorites, and Pillow will store them for easy access in the future.

If you want to listen to your own music choices, Pillow integrates with Apple Music to allow you access to any track that will help you unwind and prepare for sleep. If you prefer, you could use one of these soundscape apps to help you prepare for sleep.

Personalized Sleep Advice From Pillow

As you use the app over time, Pillow will start to learn your sleep patterns and habits. It provides you with an optimal bedtime reminder. And there is a Snooze Lab section packed with personalized insights and articles containing sleep tips to help you use technology to get a good night’s sleep.

Pillow’s tracking features fully integrate with Apple’s Health app, allowing you to compare your sleep data with other metrics to build a holistic health picture. Data can be exported from the app for further analysis and sharing with your healthcare provider.

What Is Included in Pillow for Free?

The free version of Pillow is an easy way to sample some of the app’s features. It includes limited sleep tracking, an alarm feature, and a sample of sleep sounds. If you like what you find, the full subscription-based app is well worth the cost.

If you have any sleep issues, Pillow will help you spot possible reasons for them in no time. It’s fascinating to look at a colorful chart analyzing a vital health element of your life and learn more about it.

No matter what challenges you face each day, you are always better prepared after a good night’s sleep, making sleep aid apps an invaluable health tool.

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