App Reviews /

Tactical Breather Review

Tactical Breather Screenshots
Credibility

Credibility

2.00 / 5.00

Overall Score: 6/15

Consumer Ratings: 1/2
Proposed Goal: 1/2
Evidence Based Content: 1/1
Software Updates: 0/2
Clinical Input in Development: 1/1
Research on Development Process: 1/1
Efficacy of Other Products: 1/1
Research Independence and Review: 0/2
Research Base: 0/3

Rating Date: August 2020

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User Experince

User Experience

3.38 / 5.00

Engagement: 2.50 Functionality: 4.50 Aesthetics: 2.50 Information: 4.00 Subjective quality score: 1.88 Perceived impact score: 2.67 Rating date: July 2018 Rated by: Queensland University

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Transparency

Transparency

Questionable

Overall Score: Questionable

Does the app have a privacy policy?: Yes

Does the policy describe the information storage and sharing procedures related to user entered information 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?: No/Can’t Tell

Does the privacy policy state that the app/server encrypts the entered data OR state that user information is stored locally?: Yes

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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Professional Reviews

Professional Review

Not Yet Available

Tactical Breather teaches users mindfulness and breathing exercises for stress management. It is ideal for those living with symptoms of depression or mood disorders (especially military personnel). The app breaks down user experiences into four categories: intro, tutorial, breathe and settings to improve navigation. Tactical Breather uses mostly verbal instruction with guided teachings on the importance of breathing for physiological stability and how best to engage in simple exercises to prevent shallow inhalations or exhalations. While breathing, the app offers a visual aid designed as a circle with a timer that changes color as one follows the instructed audio. The guided voice can be switched from male or female to best tailor to the user’s personal preferences, but does not offer long term tracking or personalized user features related to one’s health.

Technical Details

Available for: Requires iOS 10.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Requires Android 5.0 and up.
Developer: National Center for Telehealth & Technology
Type of Treatment: Mindfulness
Targeted Conditions: Mood Disorders, Stress and Anxiety
Target Audience: Adults, Military Personnel
Designed to be used in conjunction with a professional? No
Languages Available: English
Cost: Free
Get it on: Apple App Store, Google Play

Research on this App

Tactical Breather has been evaluated in several ways, mostly focused on gathering qualitative information about peoples’ perceptions of Tactical Breather. Indeed, the Tactical Breather app, which provides structured experiential exercises, was identified as preferable to other apps that primarily provide psychoeducation (Roy, M. J., Costanzo, M. E., Highland, K. B., Olsen, C., Clayborne, D., & Law, W. 2017. https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/cyber.2017.0221).

Despite the lack of data supporting its efficacy, it has been identified as a popular tool for mental health (Shore et al. 2014. https://doi.org/10.7205/MILMED-D-13-00429).

How we evaluate

We review apps against rating criteria developed by experts in the field. Some of those criteria are:

icon-Credibility

Credibility

We look at the research supporting the technology and the credibility of the development process.

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Transparency

We review privacy policies to see if key pieces of information about what happens with entered data are addressed.

UserExperiencePG

User Experience

We explore how fun, functional, easy-to-use, engaging, and interesting the technology is.

ProfessionalReviews

Professional Reviews

A professional in a relevant field downloads and uses the technology and writes a narrative review, highlighting pros & cons and some recommendations for use.

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