Fitbit has added female health tracking in its iOS and Windows apps, enabling users to track their menstrual cycle and keep track of fertility windows. The feature will be available for both the wearable maker’s first two smartwatches – the Versa and Ionic.
Utilizing the data collected the smartwatch will let the user know when her next period will likely occur and suggest the best time frame for conception. The company claims that the more data it collects, the more precise the forecasts will be. It will also feature push notifications that will send the user a reminder 2 days prior to her next period.
Among the several dozen menstrual tracking apps and devices already in the market, what makes Fitbit’s new app a better choice is its ease of use.
For the San Francisco-based company, the new feature has the dual appeal of welcoming a huge population group often ignored by wearables. At the same time, it will let its female users more informed about their health, and especially menstrual cycle, a subject many don’t know much about.
As the company notes in the accompanying press material, “According to a recent Fitbit survey, 80-percent of women did not know how many phases are in a menstrual cycle and more than 70% were unable to correctly identify the average length of a cycle, demonstrating a lack of awareness about women’s health.”
The female health tracker app is available to all Fitbit users age 13 and older. It is designed to help the wearer learn more about her menstrual cycle and her body, so she can better understand how it impacts other aspects of her health and fitness.
“This exciting development by Fitbit could help potentially create one of the largest databases of menstrual health metrics in the world, providing healthcare and research professionals with an unprecedented ability to study menstrual cycles and women’s health with real world data,” says Dr. Fitbit adviser Katharine White in an accompanying press release.
Here’s what to expect in the new app:
In-app period tracking. This will allow the user to log her period, record symptoms, and receive push notifications 2 days prior and on the day of her forecasted period start date.
Useful news. User can learn about the menstrual cycle, fertility, ovulation, and more with content created by Fitbit advisors Katharine White, MD, MPH, assistant professor at Boston University, and Larry Tiglao, MD, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Stanford Healthcare’s Los Olivos Women’s Medical Group in Los Gatos, CA.
Smartwatch integration. User can track where she is with her cycle, view when her period is expected and view her forthcoming estimated fertile window.
Better knowledge about her body. The user can see how her cycle and symptoms change month by month and discover the affect her menstrual cycle has on her overall health.
Community support. User can join new Fitbit Community Groups which are focused on birth control, periods, pregnancy, conception, and perimenopause and menopause to ask questions, exchange tips, or share advice.
Doctor visits that are more productive. By tracking symptoms and menstrual cycle data a user can be more informed for discussions with her doctor about the exact timing and details of her symptoms, thus provide her doctor a clearer picture of her menstrual cycle and receive more personalized care.