A medical-grade contraception app is offering choices for women tired of the pill.

As women’s health increasingly intersects with technology, fertility apps are becoming a popular contraception tool. Stockholm-based Natural Cycles is one initiative that has seen success with over 100,000 users in 161 countries. It also recently became the first app of its kind to be regulated as a medical device after a clinical study concluded that it “can be an effective means to prevent pregnancies if couples are willing to abstain or protect themselves on fertile days.”

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Natural Cycles co-founders Dr Elina Berglund and Dr Raoul Scherwitzl

The app works by using daily body temperatures to establish the likelihood of a woman becoming pregnant. With the help of an algorithm and a large data set from thousands of women, Natural Cycles determines “red” and “green” days, the former being the days a woman could become pregnant if she were to have unprotected sex and the latter being “safe” days.

As well as helping those looking for contraception, the app can assist women who are trying to conceive. In Sweden alone, 5,000 women have become pregnant with the help of the tool. “Natural Cycles is a great example of how technology is helping women to conceive in an easy and accessible way,” says Dr Elina Berglund, co-founder of Natural Cycles. “We know we’re dealing with women’s lives here and we take that very seriously.” Other fertility apps have seen similar success stories—Ovia has helped with over 50,000 pregnancies and Glow with over 200,000.

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Ovia fertility app
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Ovia pregnancy app

For consumers looking for natural methods of contraception or conception, these apps have a lot to offer. With recent controversy over the link between the pill and depression, it is likely that even more women will want to use fertility apps.

As described in our Women, Next report, there is a massive opportunity for brands when it comes to women’s health. For example, female-specific wearables have been relatively unexplored. The YONO Earbud which tracks basal body temperature, a key indicator of fertility, is changing this. As is Ava’s wristband which uses sensors to detect when a woman is most fertile based on nine different biological parameters.

On a broader level, women’s health as a whole can be explored and portrayed in exciting new ways with digital innovations and effective campaigns. The opportunity here to empower women can be taken one step further and offer true value to consumers.