An overnight oximeter to sleep tight
Fitbit has long been the pacemaker in gadgetry to track personal health. Now, again, it is first off the blocks with tech to measure blood oxygenation. Blood oxygenation saturation level is a key measure of health, which is why anyone in hospital regularly has a little oximeter device clamped briefly to their fingertip. Blood oximeters measure oxygen levels by shining red and white light through the skin. The same principle applies in latest Fitbit products, but using the wrist rather than the finger. Fitbit takes regular readings through the night. So when you wake up, along with graphs of heart rate, restlessness, sleep depth and so on, you see your oxygen level variation. Too many orange peaks, indicating times when your level has dipped below ideal, can indicate potentially dangerous sleep apnoea and other breathing problems. FitBit Versa 2, £179, fitbit.com
A magical electronic-powered customised massage
This electronic massage bed from GTech in Worcestershire is the most British-looking piece of tech I’ve seen in ages, and I mean that in both a good way and a not so good way. It’s not pretty. But it’s practical, works really well – and there’s nothing else out there that does what it does and folds away in a cupboard. It gives a solid and satisfying customisable massage. Want to concentrate on one particular bit of you that needs extra attention? It’s a breeze to adjust the mechanism in any way you like. Plus, you can increase or decrease the massage intensity equally without ploughing through menus and sub-menus. GTech Myo Touch, £300, gtech.co.uk
A Swiss smartwatch with Googly powers
At last, there’s an Android smartwatch to properly rival the Series 5 Apple Watch. It comes from Tag Heuer, which cheekily overtook Apple four years ago with the world’s first always-on smartwatch display. Tag’s newest, third-generation offering looks and feels like the real deal and, with a 45mm case, comes in any colour you like so long as it’s stainless steel or black titanium. Precision sports features are its USP. It is powered by Google software, and its features include custom-built sports tracking with GPS, accelerometer and heart rate sensors to make it your macho companion for running, cycling, walking and golf, with maps to 39,000 courses worldwide. Other specially-tailored sports apps are promised down the line.
The metrics it collects run from distance, duration, pace and speed to calories burned. The controls are not wishy-washy on-screen touches and swipes, but big precise mechanical buttons – proper chronograph pushers at the two o’clock and four o’clock positions – plus a highly ergonomic rubberised crown. The Tag also has Google Assistant aboard – which, as a voice-controlled helpmate, continues to leave Siri in its slipstream. Tag Heuer Connected Watch, from £1,495, tagheuer.com
Restful soundscapes help count sheep with sophistication
I absolutely love this wearable, connected, analytical sleep aid from Brixton startup Kokoon. It takes the form of a big, squashy pair of headphones – they work OK, incidentally, just for music – which connect with an extensive phone app chock-full of sleep routines. There’s restful music that turns off as soon as the device senses you’ve fallen asleep, breathing routines, spoken meditations, soundscapes, and calm advice on sleep which is itself quite sleep-inducing.
The big question, though – can you really wear them comfortably all night? By 1am on the first night I tried Kokoon, I’d have said no. By morning, especially when they’d lulled me to sleep from two wakeful periods later on in the graveyard shift, emphatically yes. Having a soft pillow for the cans to sink into helps a lot. Kokoon, £315, kokoon.io