Which Is the Real ‘City That Never Sleeps’ ?

By Alyse Borkan  |  Sep 3, 2014
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Everyone’s having bad dreams in Tokyo. Why else would they only be sleeping 5 hours and 46 minutes a night?

Jawbone just released a humongous dataset based on wearers of its UP bracelet, which tracks activity, both waking and sleeping. They’ve sold hundreds of thousands of the bracelets around the world, and have used this pervasiveness to understand how people sleep and move in the world.

International cities have a samples of at least 5,000 people. American cities were in the tens of thousands.

Melbourne is the sleepiest, with an average of 7 hours and 5 minutes slept, while Tokyo is full of insomniacs.

Screen Shot 2014-08-19 at 11.38.00 AMThe Wall Street Journal has, for once, done something kind of cool. They took the Jawbone dataset, and plotted it in several graphs. When you look at the numbers represented in such a way, people’s habits become clear.

New Yorkers are very set in their ways, getting up early on weekdays and not really moving around throughout the day. They sleep in on the weekends and seem to walk around more and more. (In the graphic below, red corresponds to sleep and blue corresponds to activity. The darker the color, the more people doing it.)

newyorkOther American cities aren’t quite so stratified. Orlandoans, for example, don’t really change their habits from day to day. Instead, they pretty much wake up at the same time everyday and remain sedentary.

orlandoOf course, this is no perfect dataset. It only tracks people who have UP bracelets, which are expensive at $149.99. Obviously not everyone has them. But it’s still a good barometer of global sleep habits.

We must admit though: it makes us a little sad that the original “city that never sleeps” get more shuteye than San Antonio, Texas.

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