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Pebble app looks to tell you when you're at your happiest

The new experimental app tries to measure how you're feeling based on how you rate your mood, energy level and more throughout the day.


Are you happy? Just ask Pebble.


A new app for Pebble's Time smartwatches aims to tell you when you're happy, sad or in between, and how you may be able to improve your mood.

Launched on Thursday, the Happiness app is part of Pebble's goal to gauge more than just your health and fitness by also getting a sense of your emotional well-being.

The Happiness app pops up on an hourly basis to pose a few questions. You're asked to rate your mood and energy level as well as tell where you are, who you're with and which activities and tasks you've done over the past hour. Such activities include eating and drinking; exercising; socializing; working; attending meetings; and meditating. You can also chime in with your own custom responses.

At the end of a week, Pebble sends you a report via email detailing the results based on your responses. The goal is to determine how your activities, location, social time and other factors affect your happiness. Pebble promises that the data isn't shared beyond the app itself but says it may be used anonymously to improve the software. The app is compatible only with the Pebble Time, Time Steel and Time Round smartwatches. But it works with iPhones and Android phones, as do other Pebble apps.

Fitness bands and smartwatches have been gaining popularity among consumers. Ultimately, though, the key to these devices is apps. The more useful and diverse the number of apps available for a wearable device, the more that device can prove beneficial to existing users and attract new buyers.

Pebble has tested the new app internally, and Pebble Head of Data Science Susan Holcomb shared her thoughts and experiences in a blog posted Wednesday. Holcomb said that through the app, Pebble wanted to know how our mood and energy level changed during the day, whether we felt the happiest with friends and if and how drinking water or alcohol affected us.

The app has stimulated people to adopt new behaviors, according to Holcomb. One person began drinking more water. Another person started doing yoga. Holcomb herself resolved to spend more time socializing with friends, since that's when she seemed to be the happiest.

"The Happiness App is our first experiment in this arena," Holcomb told CNET. "Members of our data science team were personally interested in visualizing how our mood and energy fluctuated throughout the day, so we built the app to test if we could get meaningful feedback. Even with just a week's worth of data, we found we got powerful insights about our emotional landscape and the drivers behind it, on a very personal level -- so we decided to share it with the world."

Update, 1:20 p.m. PT: Adds comment from Holcomb.

This article also appears in Spanish. Read: Este nuevo app para Pebble te dice cuándo eres más feliz