Are you having problems sleeping or are you concerned about your heart rate, by this time next year you will be able to pop into Harvey Norman or JB Hi Fi to get a fix, courtesy of Samsung.
At a media packed event in Berlin overnight the Korean Company used the IFA trade show to reveal a new sleep tracker, as well as a smart home hub that will even tell you when your partner or kids get home.
Using the branding ‘SmartThings’ Samsung has released a new line-up of in-home sensors for its Internet of Things connector hub.
One of the most interest aspects of the new product was a new sleep tracker device, called SleepSense, that you simply slip under your mattress to track your sleep behaviour.
The devices will go on sale in Australia next year at mass and specialist retailers.
Phil Newton the Vice President of Marketing at Samsung Australia admits that a “great deal” of education work needs to be done with medical professionals and consumers to educate them on the value of the new sleep product.
I tried the new device and after a quick snooze I was staggered at the amount of data it actually collected.
Rather than being worn, as with some existing sleep trackers, the contactless SleepSense sensor is placed under your mattress where it can keep tabs on heart and respiratory rates, plus how much the sleeper moves around while they sleep. If there are two people in the bed two sensors are needed. There was no mention as to whether sex sets it off the Richter scale.
The big question is why does a sleep sensor need to be able to switch off your TV or tweak your air-con? To help you sleep better.
According to Samsung The sensor can connect to other Samsung smart appliances (such as its smart TVs), or other non-Samsung connected devices if you have a SmartThings hub to do the bridging – so that it can switch things off or on, or dial things up or down, based on whether you’re falling asleep or about to wake up.
The gizmo will also do what more common-or-garden sleep trackers do: analyse your “sleep quantity and quality”, dishing up personalised sleep reports and serving up recommendations on how to improve your sleep via the companion mobile app.
You also get a sleep score so you can compare whether your 40 winks matches up to the average for your age. Samsung says its sleep score is based on seven factors: total sleep time, sleep ‘efficiency’, time taken to fall asleep, the number of times you woke up, the number of times you got out of bed, percentage of time in REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, and the percentage of time in deep sleep.
Samsung says it was working with Harvard Medical School Professor Dr Christos Mantzoros to create recommendations for boosting sleep quality – with advice apparently covering areas including lifestyle, nutrition and exercise. (One wonders whether ‘turning off your gadgets several hours before bedtime and reading a (paper) book’ will be among the app’s anti-insomnia advice.)
Another feature of SleepSense touted by Samsung is an alarm which will gradually wake up the user, based on analysing their sleep cycles to identify the best time to wake them (so avoiding a deep sleep phase). Being late for work because your robot decided to let you sleep in may or may not be an excuse that washes with your boss.
Samsung also suggests the sensor can be used by families to keep tabs on elderly relatives who they might be worried about. The app includes a ‘family care’ option which delivers an analysis of the quality of the user’s sleep to another family member via email.
There’s no word on price or market availability and launch dates for the SleepSense in Australia other than it is coming next year.