Location: United States
BetterYou is an app that helps people refocus their screen-time on healthier activities such as exercise and mindfulness. The app uses AI to prompt users to change their current activity depending on their goals to create healthy habits over time.
Adults in the US spend 90% of their discretionary time viewing a screen. This includes a computer, TV, or smartphone. That equates to a significant amount of time consuming entertainment. Compare that to 2007, when only 32% of such time was spent in front of a screen. An increase in lifestyle-related health issues accompanies stationary activities. These include: weight gain, diabetes, heart disease, stress, and poor sleep are just some of the adverse effects.
Breaking the screen-time habit often takes more than willpower because people become conditioned to instant gratification from visual entertainment. BetterYou is a startup using an AI-powered app to help people reprioritise how they spend their spare time.
When a user first registers for BetterYou, they decide on their goals to help the artificial intelligence understand what should be prioritised: physical, social, educational, or mindfulness.
The app tracks how people spend their screen-time and categorises time spent on each app. For example, time spent on Apple Watch or Fitbit gets filed under the “physical” category. The AI, called BetterBot, nudges users towards more beneficial activities with regular reminders based on their digital activities that day. It may suggest the user stops Netflix, fit in time for a run that evening, or give a friend a call.
Gradually, the app guides users towards forming long-lasting healthy habits to replace their old ones. Users can update their goals at any time if their priorities change, such as needing to focus more on education when summer break is over.
Refocusing leisure time to include more healthy activities can greatly improve both physical and mental health. By using a digital coach, long-term goals can be achieved.