Quick Start Guide

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So you downloaded AutoSleep - best move ever! This Quick Start Guide takes you through the essentials to ensure your sleep tracking is ready to rumble (or should that be ready to snooze). AutoSleep learns your sleep behaviours and gets better the more you use it, so what are you waiting for.... get sleeping.

Tip: if looking for something specific or having an issue, our Frequently Asked Questions page has tons of commonly asked questions and answers, including the 'Top 10 Most Popular Asked Questions' by all our users.

We also have a printable version of this Quick Guide if required, just scroll to the bottom for these links.

1 - Get Your Apple Watch Ready

(Before you use AutoSleep, ensure your Apple Watch is ready, this is most important and catches new users out)

Wrist Detection On, Passcode On

Check to make sure Wrist Detection & Passcode are turned on.

Passcode On - This is required for the Apple Watch to access your background heart rate, which AutoSleep needs to work. Open your iPhone and go into the Apple Watch settings app (its a black icon with the image of a Watch). Go into Passcode and check you turned on to use a Passcode. Don't worry, you only need to enter the passcode once when you put your Watch on. If you also enabled Unlock with iPhone, you can auto enter your passcode simply by unlocking your iPhone when you put the Watch on your wrist. The 'Simple Password' option lets you set a 4 digit passcode instead of a 6 digit password, but this up to user preference. Just make sure you have the Passcode On!

Wrist Detection On - As above, on your iPhone go into the Apple Watch settings app (its a black icon with image of a Watch). Go into Passcode and check you turned on Wrist Detection. This is also required for background heart rate. Just make sure you have the Wrist Detection On!

Check Health Permissions

Health permissions are asked for when you install the AutoSleep app, but sometimes updates and restores can fiddle with things. It's best to make sure all health categories are on for AutoSleep to be safe. No health data from AutoSleep will ever leave your device.

Go into the Apple Health app on iPhone (the app icon is white with a red heart):

  • Select Sharing tab.

  • Scroll down and select Apps.

  • Select AutoSleep.

  • Make sure that all the switches are turned on (see below image showing all the green switches indicating ON).

Note you can also find health permissions by going into the iPhone Settings - Privacy - Health - AutoSleep

Add AutoSleep To Your Watch Face

Complications are widget like displays on your Watch face, and AutoSleep has some great options for all types and sizes. We suggest as a good starting point to use AutoSleep in the middle rectangle on the infographic modular Watch face, as AutoSleep will show you a summary of your sleep and also assist when you start to use the smart alarm (more on this later).

For information on how to setup complications the Apple site has a great overview here. You can also see all the available AutoSleep complications by going to the Watch Use Complications page.

Also, you may not know this, but you can create multiple Watch faces and swipe between them. This makes it really easy to have a daytime and nighttime Watch face.

Sleep Schedule (Including Shift Workers)

Firstly, AutoSleep is fully automatic. You don't need to tell it when you go to bed and wake up. However, what is important is to define the sleep reporting schedule, especially for shift workers. This is setup in an option called Night Hour. The default setup is 9:00PM, so if 9:00PM is the hour before you normally go to bed, you can skip this step. If not, refer to the below.

Night Hour

Open AutoSleep on your iPhone and go into the Settings tab, Wizard option, some questions will appear and you will see a panel called "Set Your Night Hour" (see image below). This doesn't affect sleep detection, it affects sleep attribution. For example, if you set your night hour to 8:00PM then any sleep detected after this hour will be attributed to the next day. Any sleep before will be attributed to the previous day.

The default setting is 9:00PM to 8:59PM. This works well for most people.

What About Shift Workers?

The trick is to set your Night Hour to an hour that you are always awake regardless of your shift. We find the most common choices for shift workers are 6PM / 18:00 or 7PM / 19:00.

Setup Blood Oxygen Background Measurements

Only for those users with an Apple Watch Series 6 or above which allows SpO2 measurements:

  • Make sure the Blood Oxygen health permission is on, as explained above in 'Health Permissions'

  • Next, ensure all switches are turned on in the Apple Watch settings app (black icon with image of a Watch) in the Blood Oxygen section, including 'Allow Background Measurements' (see image below). This allows blood oxygen measurements while you sleep.

  • Next, while still in the Watch app, scroll down and open Privacy. Ensure that Blood Oxygen is enabled:

  • Finally, blood oxygen measurements only occur during sleep if the Track Sleep with Apple Watch setting is turned on. While in the Watch app, scroll down and tap into Sleep, you will see a switch to enable called 'Track Sleep with Apple Watch'. This needs to be on the Watch you wear to bed.

  • Full setup details can be found on the SpO2 Setup page here.

Setup Respiration Rate Measurements

Only for users with an Apple Watch Series 3 or later:

  • Make sure the Respiration Rate health permission is on, as explained above in 'Health Permissions'

  • Respiration Rate will only be measured if you you have the Track Sleep with Watch setting on. Go into the Watch app on your iPhone (black icon with image of a Watch), then into Sleep and you will see the switch. This needs to be on the Watch you wear to bed. See image below.

  • Next, while still in the Watch app, scroll down and open Privacy. Ensure that Respiratory Rate is enabled

  • Finally, Respiration Rate will only be measured if you activate the Apple Watch 'sleep mode' when you go to bed. We describe this more below in the Setting Up section

  • Full setup details can be found on the Respiration Rate Setup page here.

Have an Apple Watch Series 8 or Ultra?

If so, make sure you turn on Wrist Temperature to track while you sleep. To enable, go into Settings and into Wrist Temperature. Once activated your temperature will appear on the Today tab. More details on setup can be found here.

Can I Use More Than One Apple Watch?

Yes you can use multiple Watches. As a number of users upgrade Watches they keep one for sleeping and one for day use. Just make sure that both Watches are on the same WatchOS version (if possible) and are paired with your iPhone.

Hereโ€™s an explanation of how to set this up.

*Low Power Mode

Please be aware that using low power mode on your Apple Watch will turn off background heart measures and blood oxygen readings among other things. So it makes tracking of little use as heart rate is an essential health metric in sleep monitoring!

2 - Going To Bed

(Just before you lay your sleepy head, ensure you are across these steps)

Going to Bed - Unlock Watch

If wearing a Watch to bed, it needs to be unlocked to enable the heart rate sensors. So make sure the passcode has been entered before you lay down to snooze, especially if it has been charging as this will require the passcode when put back on your wrist. So if you see a little blue lock icon at the top of your Watch face when going to sleep this means no heart rate data will be collected, so you need to input the passcode to make the little blue lock disappear.

Using Sleep Focus Mode - Do Not Disturb My Sleep

Firstly, AutoSleep is fully automatic. You don't need to tell it when you go to bed and wake up, unless you want to track the time it takes to go sleep with lights off, but more on this later. However it is good practice to tell your Watch to not light up the screen and also stop sending you notifications during the night and waking you.

Sleep Focus - Apple have implemented a new 'Focus' app which contains a Sleep Focus mode option making it easier than the previous 'do not disturb' options. It is a now a very simple process to put your Watch into Focus & Sleep mode. Here are the steps to enable sleep mode when you go to bed:

  1. Swipe up on your Apple Watch to open the Control Centre

  2. Tap the crescent moon icon (looks like a half moon icon)

  3. You will see an option called "Sleep", tap this and the icon will turn into a bed image and apply the Sleep Focus mode. Refer to our FAQ page if you do not have a Sleep option, as you will need to add this in the Focus app.

Important: Sleep Focus mode is essential if you are looking to use the Sleep Stages mode in AutoSleep, which uses the sleep data from the Apple Sleep app. More on this below.

WatchOS 7 - if your Watch is on the older OS version, you can enable 'Cinema Mode' and 'Do Not Disturb' mode.

Cinema mode you can do this on your Watch by swiping up on the clock face. You will see a button with 2 masks on it. Tap this to turn on or off (see image below).

Do Not Disturb has 2 ways to do this:

  • Go into your Apple iPhone Settings app, select Do Not Disturb and then enable scheduled Do Not Disturb. This will automatically transfer to your Apple Watch.

  • You can also control this manually on your Watch by swiping up on the clock face. You will see a button with a crescent moon on it. Pressing this will turn Do Not Disturb on or off. It will also prompt you some clever options such as 'on until morning' which is one we like. If you do select just 'on', remember to turn this off after your sleep, which is why we encourage those smart options to automatically turn off for you.

Note: Your smart alarm explained below will still work when you have 'do not disturb' set to on

Another tip to save some time is using the Edit in the Settings Panel on your Watch is great for moving the 'Do Not Disturb' and 'Cinema Mode' to the top of your Watch screen. Go into the Control Panel by swiping up on your home Watch clock face, scroll to the bottom and tap 'Edit', then do a long press and drag to move the icons up the top (see below I now have cinema mode and do not disturb at the top)

What About Flight Mode, Bluetooth or My iPhone Being Off

Flight Mode / Airplane Mode

AutoSleep will still track your sleep if you put your watch into flight mode. The only thing to keep in mind is that the data will not be sent to your iPhone until you turn flight mode off whilst wearing the Watch. This may take a few minutes to complete. You can do this at any time.

Bluetooth Off

If you wear the Watch to sleep, you can still track sleep without a bluetooth connection to your iPhone. As with flight mode above, you'll need to wear the Watch and have a bluetooth connection between your Watch & iPhone again for it to send all the sleep data to the iPhone.

I Turn my iPhone Off at Night

If you wear the Watch to sleep, you can still turn the iPhone off at night. As with flight mode above, you'll need to wear the Watch and have the iPhone turned on again for it to send all the sleep data to the iPhone.

Track The Time It Takes To Fall Asleep

You do not need to press any start or stop buttons at all to track your sleep. But if you want to optionally track how long it takes for your body to enter sleep, then you can start using the Lights Off feature. This is called sleep onset latency, tracking the time it takes from you being fully awake to going to sleep.

Lights Off is a brilliant way to get more insights, you just need to tap 'Lights Off' from your AutoSleep Watch app when you lay down to sleep. Thats it! In the morning it will automatically turn off for you. Refer to the Lights Off page for more information.

Make Sure Your Watch is Charged

It sounds simple, but establishing a regular routine of charging your Watch sometime during the day is important. Some people like to do this when they wake up in the morning while having a shower, some like to do it in the evening before bed. Whichever works best for you is fine, as we want to avoid the Watch going into low power mode (< 10% battery) while you sleep.

AutoSleep lets you set a reminder if you need to charge your Watch before bed. More on this below in setting up a charge reminder, but for now, just be mindful to have a good charge before sleeping while we get used to capturing our sleep with AutoSleep.

3 - Time To Sleep

(Time to sleep and let AutoSleep work its magic)

How it Works

Using Advanced Heuristics AutoSleep works out how long you've slept.

If you do wear your Watch to bed:

1. Go to Sleep.

2. Wake up.

Even if you don't wear your Watch to bed, AutoSleep can track your time in bed. It's extremely simple.

If you don't wear your Watch to bed:

1. Put your Watch on charge before you go to sleep.

2. Sleep.

3. Put your Watch back on (or touch your iPhone when you wake up then put your Watch on within 30 minutes).

You can switch between these methods, but not on the same day. It is perfectly fine to do this on different days though.

What About Those Naps

Any naps 30 minutes or longer will be automatically tracked as sleep. Nappers usually find that changing the clock to the 24 hour mode (by pressing 12/24 on the top right of the clock tab) makes it easier to see naps.

The most important thing to keep in mind is that if you track your main sleep wearing your Watch then you should also wear your Watch when having a nap. If you do not wear your Watch when tracking your main sleep, then you should also take off your Watch when tracking a nap.

4 - Waking Up

(Check your sleep from your wrist, setup an alarm for tomorrow and record additional metrics with these steps)

Review Your Sleep From Your Watch

No need to reach for your iPhone yet, stay in bed and check your sleep directly from your wrist! Tap AutoSleep from the complication on the Watch face that you setup above. Drill into each of the sections and see how easy it is for AutoSleep to show a summary of your sleep directly on your wrist. Pay attention to how the colours reflect your goals.

Refer to Watch Use for all the information on using the AutoSleep Watch app.

Capture Todays Readiness

Are you ready for the day ahead? Use the Apple Breathe app that comes installed on all Apple Watches, it is found in the Mindfulness app on your Apple Watch. Perform a 1 minute breathe session when you first wake up while still lying down, this will capture what is known as your Heart Rate Variability (HRV), plus its a great way to start your day with a quick mindfulness minute!

AutoSleep uses HRV and your waking pulse to indicate your physical and mental stress. As soon as you finish your 1 minute breathe session, open AutoSleep on your Apple Watch and you will see a Readiness star rating. Remember that readiness is usually always in the grey to green bands and that bright green and red are outliers. Track and follow your readiness over the course of a couple weeks.

Refer to the Readiness page for more information on todays readiness and HRV.

Take a Blood Oxygen Measurement

Only for users with an Apple Watch Series 6 that allows blood oxygen measurements, use the Apple Blood Oxygen app that comes installed to take a 15 second blood oxygen reading. AutoSleep will automatically take your blood oxygen measures while you sleep provided you have background settings enabled (as mentioned above), but a manual reading in the morning can help AutoSleep understand your daytime baseline for additional insights.

Refer to the Sleep SpO2 page for more information on setting up and measuring your blood oxygen.

Wakeup To A Smart Alarm

Not a dumb alarm, this one is smart! Try experiment during the week with a time window alarm and having a wakeup when you are in a light sleep phase, it is a great way to wake up. Another strategy is to have the Smart Alarm "tickle" or "nudge" your wrist every minute during your time window. Tickle is light, Nudge is a bit more intense. What this will do is take you out of deeper sleep. You may not even feel it at the time. Or just think "what was that?" and then go back to sleep. This however, will take you out of that deep sleep phase.

Refer to the Smart Alarm page for all the information. Once you master the morning alarm, be sure to look into scheduling alarms for your whole week.

5 - I'm Up & About - Reviewing Your Sleep

(Time to check your sleep insights on your iPhone)

Open The Clock Tab

Open AutoSleep on your iPhone and go into the Clock tab (found on the bottom navigation menu). Here you will start to learn all the amazing metrics that AutoSleep captured. See your sleep duration, deep sleep, quality sleep and average heart rate for your sleep. The colours of the rings all relate to your goals (more on sleep goals below). Tap on any of the sleep rings and start to monitor your trends.

Explore The Today Tab

Let's start to understand your sleep at a glance when you wake up. While in the iPhone AutoSleep app, navigate to the Today tab. You will see a number of Tiles that each show different sleep metrics such as a sleep rating, a readiness score and even a recommended latest bedtime for the next nights sleep!

Explore more by tapping the top sleep graph to drill into more details and start learning how much time you spent in different sleep stages, along with looking at the graph to see when you were in deep sleep or awake.

While on the Sleep Session graph, touch the graph and slide your finger along, a pop-up will show you every 15min block of sleep.

Refer to the Today page to learn more.

6 - Sleep Data & Goals Looking Ok?

(Calibrate and set realistic sleep goals)

Sleep a Bit Out - Just Use the Adjust Button

Well done on using AutoSleep and tracking some sleep. This next step is important if you have found your sleep data is a bit out. Tracking sleep is a science and everyone is slightly different, so AutoSleep has been designed to allow you to teach and improve its tracking specific to you! If you adjust your most recent sleep session, AutoSleep will learn from this and apply the advanced sleep algorithms for your future sleeps. Yes, amazing. We call this "Adjust", and you can read all about it here.

The Adjust option is found in the Clock tab, just under the clock, its a little button called Adjust, this presents multiple options for you to easily calibrate.

Note: if still experiencing issues after some sleep, refer to our Frequently Asked Questions page for more troubleshooting or Contact Us

Review Your Sleep Goals

In order to maximise your sleep tracking, ensure you setup realistic goals. If you sleep a comfortable 9 hours every night and your goal is set to 7 hours, it might be time for a new goal. Start reviewing your goals for sleep duration, quality, heart rate dip and deep sleep in Settings to make sure they are applicable to you. This is easiest once you have some data as AutoSleep will give you a feel for your trends.

Goals can be found by going into Settings and tapping on Set Goals. Make any changes and save, you will notice your sleep rings will update straight away too. Refer to Configure in Settings for more information on setting goals

Sleep Goal Palette

By default a traffic light colouring range shows in AutoSleep for your goals, for example, red is generally bad and green is good, blue is exceptional. However we have some users with visual impairments who prefer other colours and those who just like to set their own colours.

While in the AutoSleep Settings, tap into Palette. Just choose the colour range (e.g. 50% is bad, 100% is good etc.) then touch the hue that you want to use. When happy, press Save. These colours will be reflected throughout the entire AutoSleep app. A reset option is available to restore the default colours too.

7 - Widgets, Reminders & Watch Faces

(Life is busy! Let AutoSleep help you even more)

Setup Some Widgets

With the release of iOS14, users can now add AutoSleep widgets to their iPhone screens. Widgets let you see your sleep information at a glance without having to open the app. AutoSleep contains a great range, so even turn them into a Smart Stack and use them all!

Here is the Apple support link on setting up widgets. Also refer to the Widgets page for more information on the available options.

Setup a Charge Reminder

Your going great getting some sleep data into AutoSleep, so for that extra hand loved by newbies and long time users, AutoSleep lets you set a reminder if you need to charge your Watch before bed. For most people this is in the evening.

It pops up and shows your current battery level and a recommendation if you need to charge the Watch. You can either Snooze it for 10, 30 or 60 minutes if not convenient or, you press Doing it Now. This will then send a reminder to your iPhone in an hour's time to put the Watch back on.

Learn all about Charge Reminders in the Watch Charge page

Night & Day Time Watch Face

Switching between Watch faces is as easy as swiping back and forth from the edge of the screen. This lets you have a Day face, a Night face and anything else you choose to setup. So when you go to bed, you just switch to a night face with a quick swipe.

The Apple site has some information on how to switch Watch faces.

8 - Start a Sleep Journal

(Sleep metrics are great, but adding notes makes it even better)

Taking Notes & Tags

Your very own sleeping journal in the same app! Applying notes and emojis to your sleep session can give it a whole new context. You might like to tag whenever you had a coffee later afternoon, or perhaps tag when you were on the computer before bed, or even record some comments on how you were feeling at bedtime. Its really up to you in what to record, but AutoSleep lets you apply these tags and then lets you filter them in the History view, eg. show me all the sleeps where I had some spicy food before bed.

Refer to the Emojis & Notes section for information on applying these.

9 - Monitor Your Sleep Bank

(Keep your sleep in credit and setup bedtime reminders)

Tonight's Bedtime, Reminders & Sleep Bank

A huge favourite of new and long time users is using sleep bank to send you reminders for when should be in bed to stay in sleep credit. Don't be fooled thinking this is a basic "same time every time" notification, AutoSleep uses algorithms to understand your past, current and next morning sleep habits, then combines it with your sleep metrics to provide an accurate latest bedtime.

Start by learning about Latest Bedtime here and Sleep bank here. Next step is to setup some bedtime reminders at different intervals (for example, remind me 60mins before when I should be in bed to stay in sleep credit) and importantly, try stick to the recommended time in bed, your body will thank you for it.

10 - Using AutoSleep with Apples Sleep App

(Both work independently of each other, so why not try both)

Using the Apple Sleep Stages

You may have noticed that your Apple Watch has an inbuilt native sleep app on it. Well we believe in choice here at AutoSleep, so when Apple released Sleep Stage data in WatchOS 9, we built full integration into AutoSleep to allow users the option to use this data. Note that Sleep Stages is only for users with an Apple Watch Series 4 or above (Apple restricted WatchOS 9 to Series 4 and above sorry), but AutoSleep still works on all models. Refer to the Sleep Analysis & Sleep Stages section on the Sleep Session page to understand more how to switch or toggle between both modes.

11 - Uncover Your Sleep Trends

(Great options to dive into your sleep data)

Sleep History

Once you have a handful of sleeps recorded, tap the History tab in AutoSleep to start monitoring your sleep history across an unlimited time period. An interactive graph and calendar view provide insights into your sleep rating, quality, time asleep, heart rate, and deep sleep, all with overlapping averages.

Learn more about this analysis tool on the History page.

Exploring Trends

For those of you wanting to dig a bit deeper, the Explore option has lots of different analysis available. For example, try compare the trends of your baseline HRV to your sleeping heart rate.

Learn more about this analysis tool on the Explore page.

Integrate With HeartWatch

You are starting to conquer the night, so why not conquer both the "day and night" with HeartWatch! This is our premier health app which provides metrics across all 24hrs of the day and night, plus we have a quick link to HeartWatch from the Today view in AutoSleep. Your AutoSleep data syncs directly into it, offering more insights with amazing graphs, workouts and trends. Did we mention its a one time low price with no subscription.... Watch the video below to see what we mean.

Download HeartWatch here.

Tip - if you like exploring trends mentioned above, then HeartWatch dashboards will blow your socks off! It allows 7 day and 21 day averages with overlaps which can compare over 25 health metrics for an entire years worth of data. See below an image where I am overlaying my sleep avg heart rate with my exercise duration, I can see that when I exercise more my sleeping average heart rate is better.

12 - Exporting Sleep Data

(Options are available for exporting your data)

Exporting Your Data

Having access to your data really makes it endless in what you can start to analyse. It's a very common request for users who may be visiting a specialist to discuss their sleep and want to bring some data.

Refer to Exports for more information.

13 - I've Hit Pro Level

(Congratulations, you are officially now an AutoSleep guru. But for users who like to keep exploring, here's a few more suggestions to try)


AutoSleep supports HomeKit which lets you automate lots of sleep type activities, like turning off the lamp at bedtime or opening the curtains when you wake up in the morning. We even setup shortcut buttons on the Watch app to help with popular options. The options really are endless.

Refer to the HomeKit page for more information on setting up and using.

Setup a Shortcut

Shortcuts is a free app that can be used extensively with AutoSleep. Each function the app supports is an action that performs a specific task and multiple actions can be combined into one task.

Refer to the Shortcuts page for more information on setting up and using.

Give Siri a Try

AutoSleep works great with Siri. We find users especially like the "hey Siri, whats my latest bedtime" activation. Refer to the Siri page to learn all about it.

Keep Up To Date

Keep discovering the amazing benefits of sleep. The User Guide contains information on all the different parts of AutoSleep, plus we post key updates on our Twitter and Instagram feeds.