Fertility Apps: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Fertility Apps: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

One of the first things I did when we started "trying" for a baby was to do a ridiculous amount of reading about how to actually plan a pregnancy. I have a beautiful daughter, but she was a "gift from heaven" as they say. A surprise when I was 19 years old.

I found the best way to track my fertility was through Basal Body Temperatures (BBT) and through cervical mucus (CM). For reasons I will explain later, the CM wasn't going to work for me, so I started tracking my BBT.

It didn't take long to discover that following a BBT chart and seeing the tiny changes was not going to work for me. I'm a scientist by nature, but the charts I produced on my own weren't clear enough for me. So, I started going through fertility apps. 

I downloaded over a dozen fertility apps and tracked three cycles through each of them. I determined there are three kinds of fertility apps:

To be clear, I named these categories, but I think they encapsulate what you're going to find out there. What are the difference between these three types?

Ovulation detectors: Will track your BBT and show you when you've ovulated according to the scientific data.

Period trackers: Will track your BBT, but their ovulation indicators are always on the same date as your LH surge. Scientifically, that's not sound, so, though they are often very useful apps, they aren't always the best when you're looking to pinpoint when you should be having sex.

Get it off my phone!: These apps often have no ability to track your cycle. They're glorified calendar apps that let you put a flower on days of your menstruation. Some of them even have bizarre functions that I did not expect.

Disclaimer: I am not paid by any of the below apps or their competitors. The following is an honest assessment from trying each one.

I am a born researcher, so I started finding the best apps out there. I found an article on Fit Pregnancy that gave, in their opinion, the ten best fertility trackers:

  1. Fertility Friend
  2. Glow
  3. Kindara
  4. Clue
  5. Conceivable
  6. Period Tracker
  7. Ovia
  8. OvaCue
  9. Daysy
  10. Natural Cycles

I later found some more apps by just searching around the app store:

  1. Life
  2. Cycles
  3. Lady Timer

Now, some of those apps got eliminated:

  • Conceivable - cannot use without $597/90 days or $249/month program. 
  • Period Tracker - only tracks period. No BBT or CM track
  • Daysy -  Requires use of a digital BBT that retails for $480 CHF (≈$583 CAD).
  • Life - Requires a subscription of $3.99/month to enter your BBT. Just too many that will allow you to do that for free

Which leaves us with a neat 9 apps:

  1. Fertility Friend
  2. Glow
  3. Kindara
  4. Clue
  5. Ovia
  6. OvaCue
  7. Natural Cycles
  8. Cycles
  9. Lady Timer

In the end, I ended up using two separate apps, which, yes, I'm going to tell you all about! Just stay tuned!

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