SleepScore vs Sleep Cycle: best app for improving sleep quality

Sleep apps are everywhere, but it can be hard to know which one is right for you. Plenty offer analytics-based services, while others focus on helping you get to sleep with music and meditation. Let’s compare two of the most downloaded sleep apps across the world – SleepScore and Sleep Cycle.

The low down

First launched for iOS in 2016, SleepScore provides analysis of your sleep patterns by studying the motion changes you make. Their system uses a patented sonar sleep tracker to measure how you sleep from your nightstand, then provides personalised recommendations on how to improve.

Founded in 2008, Sleep Cycle is a smart technology app that helps you to understand your sleep patterns and make it easier to wake up every morning using your phone’s microphone, setting it during a designated 30-minute period.

SleepScore – What does it do?

One of the most accurate non-contact sleep apps, SleepScore provides a tracker to analyse how you sleep. It also offers personal goals and a smart alarm to gently wake you up, as well as giving you a Daily SleepScore to measure how your sleeping habits change over time.

Sleep Cycle – What does it do?

Sleep Cycle is, at its core, a smart alarm clock that uses your sleeping patterns to improve both how you fall asleep and how you wake up. It provides detailed information about the quality, length and changes of your sleep.

What are the differences between SleepScore and Sleep Cycle?

Whilst both apps are non-contact sleep aids that analyse the quality of your sleep, there isn’t a huge difference between them. SleepScore has a greater depth of analysis – it’ll show you not just how you sleep, but also tips on how to improve it. Sleep Cycle, on the other hand, has a cleaner, more user-friendly interface that focuses on improving habits around both sleeping and waking up, attempting to demystify the reason why we wake up tired.

Pros and cons of SleepScore


• High level of detailed analysis about the quality of sleep

• Lots of free content available without subscription

• Contactless use


• Currently only available for iPhone

• Not great for people who travel a lot

• Takes a long time to set up

Pros and cons of Sleep Cycle


• Gentle wake-up alarm that plays during a 30-minute period

• Huge number of analytical data

• Can run through other devices like AirPlay speakers


• Doesn’t sync with other fitness trackers

• Drains your phone battery quickly

• Can pick up the movements of others, including partners and pets

Which is the right product for you?

Both SleepScore and Sleep Cycle are sleep trackers that use data to help you better understand how you sleep. If you’re an analytics buff and want help not just sleeping, but waking up too, Sleep Cycle has the most effective tools to help you. But, if you prefer a tracker with more detail about how you sleep – and one that can offer personalised advice on how to improve it, you may have better luck with SleepScore.