A few days ago, Scott Johnson contacted me on behalf of his friend Kyle Rose, asking if I would like to try out a new diabetes logging app – mySugr. As you can see from my diabetes app page on my phone, I am always willing to try an app that promises to make living with diabetes a little bit easier. The bar is set quite high however, for continued use of any of these apps. If there is no value added, it is not worth the time it takes to use it (sidenote: GoMeals is at the top of my list – best app for eating out).
Setting up mySugr was pretty easy. I did get a little confused with the slider bar (pictured below) though. I thought it wanted to know my insulin to carb ratio for some sort of meal calculation. Like a lot of people, I have a different ratio for different meals. Then when I entered my first meal in the logbook, I quickly realized that the slider bar was to set up for exchanges. Apparently some people still use those! (Just leave the bar all the way to the left)
I’ve only been using the app for a few days, so I am still trying out all the features. I logged my lunch yesterday and earned a bunch of points (more on the purpose of points later). It’s nice that I could earn points for things that I do anyway. There was an opportunity to earn more points by logging my location. I am not sure why the logbook would need my location, I don’t understand the benefit for me, and the safety and privacy issues are just too high for me to consider including that information. I was able to squeeze in a little time on my WiiFit after work today and earned points for logging that activity as well.
So what’s the point of points? To be totally honest, I am not sure yet. The progress bar on the home screen helps keep track of the points and the goal is 50 points per day. I obviously have not reached that point yet. There are additional challenges I can participate in, and one of them is at least somehow tied to a donation to a diabetes organization.
There are clear benefits to the mySugr app. It is easy to log BGs, food, insulin usage, and exercise all in one place. The inclusion of the monster makes a boring task a little more fun (especially when you can name it after a friend). The points are a great bonus, and rumor is that the connections to diabetes organizations are going to get stronger. If I can raise money for my favorite diabetes organizations by doing something that takes maybe five minutes out of my day, that is something that would definitely motivate me to use the app.
As is the case with most diabetes apps, I am left wondering if I am the target market. I have an appointment with a new endocrinologist on Friday. I can almost guarantee you that he will have no interest in looking at any of the information from the app. If I can trap him in the room long enough, he will probably look at my Dexcom reports and my pump and meter information from Diasend. If doctors are not taught how to use a mobile app and/or do not understand the benefits of the app, they are not going to encourage their patients to use it.
I am planning to keep an eye on the app and the updates and continue to experiment with it as more features are rolled out in the United States. If you’ve got an iPhone (Android soon), I’d suggest downloading it and seeing if it fits with your current diabetes management plan or can improve your management and help you tame that diabetes monster.
Disclosure: I was invited to review the mySugr app before it officially launched on Wednesday, June 5, 2013. I was not compensated for this review, and as always, all thoughts and feelings are my own. The mySugr app is now available for download for free in the App Store. For a more comprehensive review, please read Scott’s post.
P.S. The writing of this post was interrupted by a fire truck, ambulance, and hairball. Apologies for any confusion or gaps in information.