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Happify is an app for adults aimed to improve overall well-being and happiness, with influences from positive psychology, cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness. The application has three tabs: Home, Win Prizes, and Profile. “Home” shows the user their current activities, which consist of games, tasks and meditations. The goal is to spend a few minutes every day completing activities. Each activity intends to strengthen one of the five happiness skills: savor, thankful, aspire, give, or empathize. As the user completes activities, they earn points and unlock additional activities. Points go towards winning an experiential prize, ranging from a film night to a family trip, and can be viewed under “Win Prizes”. The number of points required for prize eligibility varies from month to month, though they usually start at 20 points which can be earned through one short activity. There are over 70 prize winners per month providing many opportunities for users. “Profile” allows the user to see points earned in the present month, lifetime and check on their improvement on skills. Additional features include the option of following other users in the app to track their progress and receive encouragement on yours.

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Credibility

Overall Score: 3.92/5.00

Overall Score: 11/14

Research Base: 1/3
Research Funding: 2/2
Proposed Intervention: 2/3
Consumer Ratings: 3/3
Clinical Input in Development: 1/1
Software Support: 2/2

Date of Rating: February 2018


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User Experience

Objective Quality Score: 3.34/5.00

Subscale scores:
Engagement: 3.80
Functionality: 2.88
Aesthetics: 3.17
Information: 3.50

Subjective quality score: 2.38

Perceived impact score: 2.92

Rating date: February 2018
Rated by: Queensland University


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Transparency

Overall Score: Questionable

Overall Score: Questionable

Does the app have a privacy policy?:Yes
Does the privacy policy describe the information storage and sharing procedures related to user entered information, OR state that user information is stored locally?:Yes
Does the privacy policy state that the app/server encrypts/de-identifies the entered data OR state that user information is stored locally?:Yes
Does the app provide the option of a pin entry or log-in process to view and enter user data?:Yes
Does the privacy policy state whether or not users can use the app WITHOUT entering identifiable information, OR state that user information is stored locally?:No/Can’t Tell
Does the privacy policy state whether or not users can delete entered information OR state that user information is stored locally?:Yes
Does the privacy policy state whether or not users can edit entered information OR state that user information is stored locally?:Yes


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More Information

Available For: Requires iOS 8.0 or later;4.4 and up
Developer: Happify, Inc.
Type of Treatment: Cognitive Behavioral Principles, Mindfulness, Symptom Tracking/Self-Monitoring
Targeted Conditions: Mood Disorders, Stress & Anxiety
Target Audience: Adults
Designed to be used in conjunction with a healthcare provider: No
Cost: Free with in-app purchases
Get it on: Google PlayiTunes, Online

Research on this App

One study tested the efficacy of Happify, specifically whether usage predicts well-being. Data was collected from 152,747 users, and results showed that happiness improved about 11% over the course of 8 weeks. More usage predicted more positive emotion and less usage predicted less positive emotion. One aspect of the app is weekly gratitude reflections, which has been studied extensively by Dr. Robert Emmons. One study found that undergraduate students keeping weekly gratitude journals for 9 weeks reported more optimism and overall well-being (Emmons & McCullough, 2003). When the gratitude journal intervention was intensified to daily for two weeks, the participants reported higher levels of positive affect and pro-social behavior.