Is the key to happiness spiritual enlightenment, a satisfying family life or hourly water intake? If it's the last of these, your Pebble smartwatch may be able to help you find out. The company's new, experimental Happiness app tracks your mood over the course of a week and then sends you a report, showing how your state of mind changed, based on your activity, food consumption, sleep and location.
The app, which is available free to Pebble users right now, prompts you for data every waking hour, asking about your mood, what you were just doing and who you were with. After 7 days, the app generates a detailed analysis for you, letting you know how your mood varied by time of day.
In a blog post, Pebble Head of Data Susan Holcomb detailed some of the insights she got from using the happiness app for a week and giving it to testers. She found, for example, that her energy level was highest first thing in the morning and then waxed and waned throughout the day. Her mood was best after engaging in social activities such as talking on the phone.
Holcomb reports that testers changed their behavior based on some of the questions they were asked by the app.
"One tester realized that he was always saying “no” when the prompt asked if he drank water in the last hour, so he resolved to drink more water," she writes. "Another took up yoga thanks to a recurring yoga-related question."
Of course, if the real reason you're unhappy is because of relationships, money, your career, an existential crisis, childhood trauma or almost anything more complex than your hourly activities, the Happiness app probably won't do you much good.
The app was developed as part of Pebble's health initiative. The company also announced that it is publishing its activity tracking algorithms and collaborating with researchers, including those at Stanford University's Mobilize Center, to learn more about how to make people active (and healthy).