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Sleep disorders are a common problem and contribute to a wide range of healthcare issues. The societal and financial costs of sleep disorders are enormous. Sleep-related disorders are often diagnosed with an overnight sleep test called a polysomnogram, or sleep study involving the measurement of brain activity through the electroencephalogram. Other parameters monitored include oxygen saturation, respiratory effort, cardiac activity (through the electrocardiogram), as well as video recording, sound and movement activity. Monitoring can be costly and removes the patients from their normal sleeping environment, preventing repeated unbiased studies. The recent increase in adoption of smartphones, with high quality on-board sensors has led to the proliferation of many sleep screening applications running on the phone. However, with the exception of simple questionnaires, no existing sleep-related application available for smartphones is based on scientific evidence. This paper reviews the existing smartphone applications landscape used in the field of sleep disorders and proposes possible advances to improve screening approaches.

Original publication




Journal article


Physiol Meas

Publication Date





R29 - R46


Actigraphy, Cell Phone, Humans, Polysomnography, Sleep, Social Control, Formal, Surveys and Questionnaires