Philips Sonicare App vs. Oral-B Smartphone App

Why compare the Philips Sonicare brushing app with the one from Oral-B? Should the app really influence your buying decision? Maybe not, you should pick your toothbrush certainly by it’s brushing features first. On the other hand, knowing that there is a difference might help in your decision if you are really unsure which rechargeable toothbrush you want.

How does the Philips Sonicare App work?

After you downloaded the Philips app from the Google Play store or Apple’s AppStore and installed it on your smart phone you are ready to go.

First, you need to click on “Brush” in the app and turn your toothbrush to active mode. If the lights at the handle are turned on, you are good to proceed. Handle and app should now connect automatically. If it does not work, bring your phone closer to the toothbrush.

Prepare your toothbrush for brushing by adding toothpaste and place it in the upper right part of your mouth. This is important so the app can trace your progress correctly. While it is ok to move your head a bit, larger movement is something you should avoid as it will make it difficult to impossible for the app to exactly trace your brushing process.

While brushing watch the screen and follow the instructions on your phone. The location sensor in the handle send a signal to the phone and displays your position. If you press too hard, the pressure sensor will alert you in real time. The scrubbing sensor detects an incorrect brushing technique and will alert you use less motion. This is an especially helpful feature for users who just switched from a manual toothbrush as your old brushing habits do not work for sonic toothbrushes. They require you to let the brush do the work, not your hand.

Every 20 seconds the handle will vibrate to alert you to move on to the next segment. You should brush the segments as indicated by the app for this to work. If you switch earlier or choose a different location, you confuse the app and the data produces might be useless.

After 2 minutes the handle will shut off. If you turn the toothbrush back on within 10 seconds, you are in the so called touch-up mode. You can see on the screen if you missed any areas and will be guided to brush them for 20 seconds.

Sounds complicated? It isn’t. After a few days your will do it on autopilot.

See all Philips Sonicare electric toothbrushes that connect to your smartphone here.

How does the Oral-B App work?

Once you downloaded the Oral-B app from Apple’s AppStore or the Google Play store you can start your journey into better oral health.

After you turned on the the smart phone app, you need to take the brush handle out of the charger. Attach the brush head if necessary and add toothpaste. Bluetooth pairing will not work while it is charging. The app will instruct you on all steps necessary to pair the device.

Next step would be to choose your brushing routine by picking a goal. This can be either something your dental professional recommended or you go with one of the standard routines the app suggests like fresh breath, plague removal, whitening, ortho care or gum health.

Follow your process in real-time on the monitor. The app will assist you in your progress while a 3D mouth map shows you where you are.

Because the Oral-B handle is already equipped with a quadrant and 2-minute timer as well as a pressure sensor, this is no job for the app. This is a huge difference to the Philips app which has to take care of all this information for the lack of these features in the handle.

Your Oral-B brush handle keeps track of 20 session in a row. So even if your phone is nowhere near you, you can collect brushing data and watch it later on your phone.

The app also allows you to set reminders for tongue cleaning, flossing or rinsing.

A lot of thoughtful features are included with this app. You might be overwhelmed by the choices at first, but believe me, this app is really easy to use. Just start with the standard process and you are fine. With all the other option you can deal later.

Oral-B rechargeable toothbrushes with Bluetooth are listed here.


Both brands developed a smart phone app to help you reach your bushing goals and assist you in improving or maintaining your oral health.

Both apps attempt to lead you to 100% brushing coverage. They both provide feedback in real time for pressure as well as for technique.

The main difference, and this is also why I like it better, is the extra though that went into the Oral-B brushing app. The routines and reminder you can choose are really helpful to reach your goal.

Apart from that, Oral-B also produces a wider choice of handles compatible with their app than Philips Sonicare.

Toothbrush HQ