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Stress is very personal, not knowing how to handle it makes it more stressful: Fitbit

Two years after launching stress management features on its smartwatches, Fitbit now believes that stress is very personal, depending on what the stressors are for a person and how their body reacts to it or how it builds resilience.

Along with his new Fitbit Sense 2 smartwatch announced last weekthe googleThe in-house fitness company is also introducing a body response sensor that measures continuous electrodermal activity (CDA) for managing stress throughout the day. “This type of sensor is mostly used in scientific research devices. So not only are we very excited to bring it to people with Sense, but we are also excited about future opportunities,” explains Elena Perez, Group Product Manager, Google, off on

Fitbit’s new body response feature also includes all-day heart rate, heart rate variability, and even skin temperature data to help identify those acute moments of potential stress that manifest as body reactions. “When we notice or identify these body reactions, we will notify you shortly after,” she said, adding that this was also to ensure the user can take action, clarifying that “body responses can be triggered by a many different things, be it distress, excitement, or even stimulants like a lot of coffee.”

“Knowing that your body is showing these signs of stress, but not knowing what to do about it, can be stressful on its own.” And this is why understanding these body reactions can help users better understand what your stressors are, and Fitbit follows up on this by suggesting tools that can best manage that stress.

“Because stress is so personal,” said Perez, Fitbit makes the experience highly customizable. “You can choose to disable these notifications at any time. If you prefer to look at and reflect on your data at the end of the night or at the end of the week. We care so much about stress management and personalization because we know the impact that can have on overall health.”

When asked how, for example, a person’s ethnicity influences this data, Perez clarifies: “Because we tested with different users and because we realize that stress is so personal, the data really differs from person to person. So it’s not really normalized that way. It’s really done in a way where the algorithms are specific to each person.”

She said the data is based on individual CDA data, linked to heart rate, variation in hearing frequency and skin temperature, which is really specific to each person. “So it really depends on each person’s response and the body’s response at the time.”

TJ Varghese, Director of Product Management, Google, said Fitbit is also introducing the new sleep profile watch face with the Sense 2. “It’s a dynamic watch face that you can use and fun to work with and will be dynamic based on your sleep trends.”

The new Premium Sleep Profile introduces the concept of sleeping animals based on monthly sleep analysis and makes it easier for users to understand their sleep patterns. (Image source: Fitbit)

Sense 2 also takes Fitbit’s heart health features launched last year to the next level with reports of irregular heartbeats using the PPG sensor that assesses signs of AFib. “We’ve already signed up more than 2 million people,” he said, adding that Fitbit premium users can “go deeper into the settings to bring out additional insights and trends.” In addition, the Health Metrics dashboard now provides a holistic view of wellness metrics, including respiratory rate and variations in skin temperature.

The new Premium Sleep Profile introduces the concept of sleeping animals based on monthly sleep analytics and makes it easier for users to understand their sleep patterns and find ways to improve sleep quality. “We analyze your data from the last month and we provide you with a summary of what is typical for you and others like you and we use 10 different metrics including a few new data points such as smooth, sleeping, consistency and time to sound asleep Varghese explained.

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