At heart, I’m a stats guy. I love stats and it is probably the reason I love baseball so much. It is a sport driven by stats for everything. But my love of stats and insights doesn’t end with baseball. In my day-to-day life, I love seeing information on my day, how I’m spending my time and where I’m spending it.
One of the best apps I’ve found for this is Life Cycle from Northcube AB. The Swedish app development company launched the app back in July 2016 and have been slowly building and tweaking on it over the past two years. Now it is a richly detailed app that gives you insights on your day, weeks, months and years. Using location information, Life Cycle gives you a unique donut of information that tells you where you have been in your day and how long you were there or performed that activity. Further, it is customizable with your own activities so you can truly make the information provided by Life Cycle unique to you. It also links to the developers other primary app, Sleep Cycle, so you get the complete picture of your day-to-day, including your sleep.
I’ve been using Life Cycle now for a little over a month (as well as Sleep Cycle) and if you like insights into how you are spending your time each day, this app is one you need to have installed on your iPhone.
Life Cycle is a straight-forward, four-tab navigation app that is bright and bold. The first tab is, aptly named, Donut. This app is the default view within the app and gives you a near real time view of how you have spent your time for the day, week, month, or year. The more time you spend at a particular location, the larger the piece of the donut is for that activity. It’s deceptively simple but it is a great way to present this data to you.
When you are looking at your Day donut, you can also edit an activity as well as add time for an activity. This is done when you tap on a wedge for an activity and you will see three icons pop-up below the donut.
The pencil icon allows you to edit, including delete, an activity. This is handy if an activity was identified as one thing when in reality it was something else. For example, when I’m staying in a hotel, I’ve had times where my location was interpreted as being at the restaurant in that hotel that is located on the floor below me or the like. Editing allows me to properly identify the time as time I was actually in my hotel room and not the restaurant.
The plus sign icon allows you to add an activity and the time you did that activity to your donut while the stats icon allows you to look at the stats for that particular activity over the day and week.
The way that Life Cycle presents your information is more intuitive and certainly more interesting than simply looking at a list of activities.
Next up is the Activities tab, new in a recent redesign of the app. Here you get a list of all of the activities you have done while you have been using Life Cycle. You will see the name of the location or activity that you have spent time doing along with a simple line chart to show you at a glance your trend for spending time at that place or activity.
If you tap on a particular activity, you can get more details about it such as your hors per week spent doing that activity, your last occasions, and in the case of activities, you can see the top locations where you have done that activity.
The idea behind this is to give you a view into your trends which can be helpful if you need to make a lifestyle adjustment.
Finally, there is the Locations tab. This gives you a list of all the locations you have visited while using Life Cycle. In many ways, it is similar to the details provided to you in the Activities tab but is focused on locations. From the list, you can tap on a location and get details about what you did at that location and how long you were there.
Finally, as you would likely expect from an app like this, it ties in with Apple Health. Doing so allows for activities you perform (like walking or mindfulness meditation) to be imported into Life Cycle and calculated as part of your day. It also can tie into your Apple Watch so your activities that you track with that device can be imported and tracked from it. You can also view your daily activity donut on your Watch.
Finally, the question with an app like Life Cycle is the impact that it has on your battery life. Northcube indicates that it consumes less than 1% of your battery life and I have found that to be true. I run the app all day on my iPhone 8 and it has virtually no impact on my battery longevity.
Overall, Life Cycle does an excellent job of keeping track of your activities as you go throughout your day. It provides you with great insights into the time you are spending at locations or doing activities that can help you sort out that work/life balance or help you make lifestyle changes.
Life Cycle is a free download in the App Store and you will get a free month of premium services which allows you to have online backups of your data. That add-on is $9.99 per year.
If you like stats and seeing insights into how you are spending your time each day, give Life Cycle a try. I for one have found it to be one of my key go to apps on my iPhone as it provides a wealth of information on me… being me.