Jawbone’s UP and The Napa Earthquake


Jawbone’s UP activity tracker monitors everything from fitness to diet to sleep, but it wasn’t until recently that the company used its wearer’s data to understand in-depth how natural disasters affect us, even if it is something as simple as sleep.

 

The South Napa Earthquake that occurred in California last month is reported to be the strongest earthquake that Northern California has experienced in 25 years. As with any strong earthquake, its vibrations are felt from miles away, making it a prime example to study the effects such vibrations have on people’s sleep patterns. Using UP wearer’s data, Jawbone’s data science team compiled the collected information and found varying effects based on the distance wearers were from the earthquake.

 

The number of Jawbone UP wearers awake in areas affected by the earthquake. Source: Jawbone.

The number of Jawbone UP wearers awake in areas affected by the earthquake.
Source: Jawbone.

 

In areas within 15 miles from the center of the earthquake like Napa, Fairfield, and Sonoma, almost all (93%) of UP wearers were awoken by the quake, with about half unable to go back to sleep and forced to stay up the rest of the night. As the distance grows further away, the disturbance of sleep decreases accordingly. In San Francisco and Oakland, approximately only half (55%) of wearers were awoken by the earthquake, and even less in Modesto and Santa Cruz with almost no wearers being awoken.

 

With more people using activity trackers, scientists now will have access to big data that was previously unavailable, or too costly to get. While there are concerns over privacy in terms of such data, there is something to be said on its ability to help us learn more about ourselves, or even assist on more critical research such as research on serious and fatal diseases.

 

Check out Jawbone’s original blog post here with the interactive chart..

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