Innovation

Sweet dreams with a sleep robot

Insomniacs could be soothed to sleep by a deep-breathing soft sleep robot that plays relaxing sounds seen at Berlin’s IFA consumer electronics show. Amy Pollock reports.

BERLIN, GERMANY/SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES (REUTERS) – Nodding off can be difficult

But a new sleep robot could be the answer to insomnia

The Somnox looks like a “breathing” pillow, with a soft cover and a huggable shape.

Its developers based its technology on slow yogic breathing techniques combined with calming music and sounds.

SOMNOX CO-FOUNDER, JULIAN JAGTENBERG,

“We made, I think, a thousand prototypes in shapes, in sizes, in features, and we also made ones that became warm or cold, or had a different scent or smell – but we found that the most effective ones to reduce the time it takes to fall asleep were these of breathing and sounds.”

Lying down with the Somnox sleep robot helps you drop off more quickly, says the company.

By simulating deep, low frequency breaths and playing soothing sounds, the part of the user’s nervous system responsible for “rest and digest” functions is stimulated.

Its curved shape mimics the foetal position, which is how many people doze off.

SOMNOX CO-FOUNDER, JULIAN JAGTENBERG,

“We want to try to really give that feeling of companionship and affection… Actually we provide a birth certificate within the package so you can give it a name so that you have your new sleep companion with you in the bedroom.”

The “breathing” bot comes with a smartphone app allowing users to upload their own audio and adjust its setting.

The Somnox sleep robot goes on sale in November with a price tag of around $500.

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