A smart, huggable bed partner who also improves your sleep quality. Sounds great, right? Soon, you might be able to order one for yourself: Somnox is a soft robotic pillow that gently breathes as you hold it.
Although still in its prototyping phase, Somnox is a startup by students from Delft University of Technology, in The Netherlands. They designed Somnox based on a research showing that the exposure to calm breathing soothes our brain and helps us fall asleep. While holding the smart pillow, your breathing rhythm will slow down to adapt to its rhythm.
Contrary to a large number of sleeping and relaxation smartphone apps, Somnox doesn’t require the use of a screen at night. The sight of the white-blue light emitted by monitors, may prevent our brain from releasing melatonin, and counteract the exact reason why you pick up your phone.
Rather than simply listening to a relaxing tune, Somnox provides a much more tactile, sensory experience. It can also interpret whether the user is awake or in a deep sleep, and respond accordingly. This way, the pillow can help people who are frequently awake throughout the night drift off again.
Maybe lying next to a person with perfect sleeping skills could have the same effect on your state of relaxation. But Somnox could be a nice second option. This smart pillow will not disturb your nighttime with sleep-talking, abrupt movement or trips to the bathroom, and it definitely won’t snore. And in the morning, you’ll just need to plug it in the nearest wall socket.