Wear Stand Up Alert

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Trouble installing the app?

Please see Wear OS Google Play Store issues

Version 3: major updates

Initial setup

WATCH FACE COMPLICATION
New Android doesn’t let apps work in the background reliably. Now Google’s AI decides what you, the user want. To get around Google’s “smarts”, place the app’s watch face complication, which ensures accurate step detection and reminders on time. Most Wear OS watch faces let you add “data” or “complications”. The way to add data is different for each watch face. Here is an example:

ACTIVATE STAND UP ALERT

Open configuration screen by tapping on the watch face complication:

Enable “Inactivity tracking”, and do your sitting work for an hour or so. The activity chart will show you how many steps were – falsely – detected when you just worked at your desk. Set movement goal slightly higher than the number of false detected steps in the sample hour.

IN PRACTICE
If you don’t get up for a period of time, the watch will remind you: Do not dismiss the notification if you are not in a situation when you can stand up. It will not alert you until you do get to get up

SET AND FORGET
In day to day practice this is a fully automatic app. You set the active hours of the day, reminder frequency and the limit based on your watch, then it will politely do its thing. No more fiddling necessary.

NEVER DISTURBS
It will not frustrate you with unwanted, repeated alerts: if you are not in a situation when you can get up, just keep the notification. It will go away automatically as soon as you get to get up. No repeat alerts.

FALSE STEP DETECTS
Our watches do a good job of differentiating steps from other movements, but there will always be mistakes. Experience:
►Moto 360 (1st gen) 20-30 false detects / hour
►Huawei Watch 60-80 / hour

ACTIVITY CHART
Shows your steps in the last 8 x 15 minutes (2 hours). Watches may differ in step detection. You will see what your particular watch detects. Note: the activity chart will only appear after 15-30 minutes following installation (and only if there was at least one step detected).

Troubleshooting checklist

Not getting notified?

  1. Install the app on your watch. The phone app is only necessary for old old Android Wear 1.x watches
  2. Place the watch face complication on your watch face. This is necessary, otherwise Wear OS / Android will not allow the app to reliably work in the background to monitor your movements (details)
  3. Enable the option “Inactivity tracking”
  4. Set the Active hours. The app will not notify you outside the active hours
  5. Set the active days. The app will not notify you on unmarked days of the week.
  6. Set the step limit high enough. Every watch detects some false steps as you move your hands, even if you don’t get up.
  7. Set the option “Notification card” and/or vibration patterns, beep sound as you like
  8. Make sure your watch is not in “Do not disturb” if the option “Obey do-not-disturb” is enabled
  9. If you have Google Fit configured to track your movements, mark the option to “Track via Google Fit” (default)
  10. The app will not track you while your watch is on charger, the notification timeout will start when you take your watch off the charger

Not getting strong enough vibration?

  1. Increase the vibration strength using the seek bar next to the stretching figure icon
  2. Increased vibration is not compatible with the “Notification card” option on newest watches. Please disable the “Notification card” option (you will still see Stand Up Alert status in the mandatory watch face complication).
  3. If vibration is still not strong enough, you can enable audible notification (“beep” option)

Not seeing the peek card?

  1. Android Wear 1.x watches can show notifications as peek cards
  2. Google removed peek cards from Android Wear 2.x and Wear OS
  3. I implemented peek cards for Wear OS in the Bubble Cloud watch face (details)

Not getting audible notifications?

  1. Option introduced only in Version 3.03
  2. Make sure your watch has a speaker
  3. “Media volume” should not be muted (in System Settings / Sound)
  4. Enable the option “Beep” in Wear Stand Up Alert
  5. The app will not make any sound in “Do not disturb” mode, even if the option “Obey do-not-disturb” is disabled

Manual install

You do need the watch component of Wear Stand Up Alert: if the watch doesn’t automatically prompt you to install the watch component, here is how you can install it manually from the Play Store on the watch:

Obey Do-Not-Disturb

If obey “do not disturb” is unchecked, you will get notifications even when the Do-no-disturb mode is enabled on your watch (however no beep sound in DND)

Screenshot_1546331936.png

Notification

Make sure to check the option “Notification card” so you get notifications like this on your wrist:

Screenshot_1541580260.png
(Given that you enable the peek-card notifications in the Bubble Cloud watch face – otherwise you just get the usual “notification dot” (how to hide it) on the watch face and you can swipe up to see Standup alert as the top item)
What to do, when “Stand Up” notification appears:
  • If you can, stand up and complete the hourly steps goal. The notification will auto-dismiss as soon as you reach the hourly goal.
  • If you are in a situation when you cannot stand up, do not dismiss the Standup Alert notification, because if you do, it will notify you again after your set time limit. As long as the notification is active, the app will not notify you again.

Example: I set the watch to vibrate 3 times when I need to stand up, and I even set it to vibrate once when I complete the steps goal:

Screenshot_1546331936.png
Some don’t like the completion vibration, you can control both to your liking.

100/60min means: my goal is to take 100 steps every 60 minutes between 8AM and midnight. If I don’t I get a notification.

Screenshot_1546331962.png
You might need to set a higher steps goal, because watches tend to register some of “phantom steps”, (hand movements identified as steps). The chart helps you to see how many steps were detected in each 15 minutes in the past 2 hours.
Calibrate the limit: Work at your desk or watch a tv show for an hour, and see how many steps are shown in the chart for the last 4 slots (if you set the time limit to 60 minutes). Use this step count as the baseline. (Example: if it’s between 70-80 steps, set the hourly steps goal to 100, which is slightly over the baseline).
Watch face complication
For those who don’t use Bubble Cloud as their watch face the complication is necessary, so the operating system does not kill Stand Up Alert’s background task. (New Android doesn’t let apps work in the background reliably. Google’s AI decides what you, the user want. To get around Google’s “smarts”, place the app’s watch face complication, which ensures accurate step detection and reminders on time.)
The watch face complication shows you useful status information:
complication.jpg
The progress around the circle can mean either of 2 things:
Inline images 1
  1. Always show steps: yes it shows you have achieved 75% of your hourly steps goal. Please note this percentage will go down as you sit longer than an hour (or your programmed alert period).
  2. Timeout then steps: while you are sitting, the progress meter will correspond to the percentage of your alert period (if your alert period is the default 1 hour, the 75% could mean about 75% of the hour (60-17 minutes) is still remaining before you should stand up). In this mode the after you do stand up the circle will show you how close you are to meeting the hourly steps goal and this way clearing the alarm.
In short: the progress bar always shows you your steps progress when the watch tells you to stand up. But mode #2 lets you change this to kind of an hourglass where the time counts backwards before you have to stand up.
Color codes in Bubble Cloud watch face complications
Bubble Cloud can show progress type watch face complications in different ways (details):
  • circle completing,
  • gauge pointer
  • bubble color: the bubble (or the text in the bubble) can change its color from green to red (when it’s red, it’s time to get up!)
complication-bubble-cloud-only.jpg
Watch face complication icons
Here are the explanations of the icons:
Inline images 1
You will see the standing man with the raised hands when the app encourages you to stand up. The 43 minutes means you have not met your hourly goal in the last 43 minutes!  It will switch back to the walking man as soon as enough steps are detected. And when you sit down, after a while it will show the sitting man with the timer. When you pass the inactivity time you set (1 hour by default) you will again see the standing man with the raised hands.
If you connect a charger, turn off inactivity tracking or outside of configured office hours the no-alarm (crossed bell) icon will show.
The sitting man with 21m means the watch detected you have been sitting for about 21 minutes.
Chart

The chart mentioned above can be viewed both in the watch app and in the “Stand up alert” section of the Bubble Cloud app:

Inline images 2
The chart shows you how many steps were detected in the last 2 hours (in 15 minute resolution). “:51” is minutes of the hour, the value on top is the step count. You can touch the columns in the chart, and it will give you a little bit more explanation.
This chart is intended to help the initial setup, where you can work out the hourly limits. This is only necessary, because there are always a bunch of falsely detected steps. So you work at your desk for an hour, and then you can see it still detected 12 steps in each 15 minutes on average.  So you can set your reminder to 60 minutes and 50 steps.  If less than 50 is detected it will remind you.

Colors in the chart

red = no stand up monitoring (while the watch is being charged for example) numbers turn red in activity chart: time slots considered “done”, you don’t need to meet a “moving step count”, time slots outside your “active hours” are also marked with red
blue = after you disconnect the charger (or dismiss the stand up notification) it will not remind you for the amount of time you set. If you have 30 minutes configured and disconnect the charger, the next two time slots (15 + 15 minutes) it will keep track of your steps, but will only start to remind you if the 30 minutes is up

Bubble Cloud integration

As a bonus to Bubble Cloud users, they can configure Wear StandUp Alert using the Bubble Cloud app on their phones. The following settings work well on a Huawei Watch 2 for example (other watches might have different step count sensitivity):
Screenshot_20181107-095219_Bubble Cloud Wear + Widgets.jpg
Notes:
  • Many options, including the “Stand up Alert” section works without any limitation in the free version of Bubble Clouds. No Premium/Pro purchase necessary.
  • You can also disable every other function of Bubble Clouds, and simply use the app to give you easy access to the settings of Wear Stand Up Alert using your phone (instead of the tiny screen of the watch)
  • Moreover, since Wear Stand Up Alert is a “set and forget” type of app, after the initial configuration you might never even need to alter the settings, the app will just work in the background and alert you when it finds you sitting for too long.
  • Every setting is available on the watch itself. Using the settings on the phone only differs in convenience.
  • Little lock icon: it belongs to the spinners (time and step limit), and it is there only to prevent accidental changes as you scroll up or down. The first touch of the spinners unlocks it, then you can change

Version 3: major update

  • Workaround for Android killing background process
  • Dark UI
  • Battery saver watch face complication
  • Improved connectivity with Bubble Clouds
  • Option: Google Fit step count source

For details see Wear Stand Up Alert v3.02

  • New option: audible notification with a beep (on watches with speaker)

For details see Wear Stand Up Alert v3.03beta

Get it on Google PlayWear Stand Up Alert is a small utility, the main idea is that it will buzz your wrist if you sit too long, and you can quickly glance on the watch to see how long you have been sitting and whether you should take a break or not yet.

Author: greg

the dev