Where can I find the right information? In the app? The manual? On a website? Or should I make a phone call? Why isn’t there one central point where I can find everything?
We heard you. Therefore we are pleased to announce the Somnox Support 2.0 – a new way to support you through an updated live chat, an always up-to-date knowledge base and support messages for new Sleep Robot users.
Renewed Support Center
A large part of our Somnox Support 2.0 is our renewed Support Center. The latest information is now always available through the app. You can look up a question in the app:
Or you can use your browser of choice on your phone, tablet or computer to go to https://support.somnox.com and type in your question:
Get direct help from us
You want help. By real people. We understand that. You can now reach us on weekdays from 09:00 to 17:00 CET via our renewed chat. Click on the chat icon in the lower right corner of your app and start a conversation with one of our Sleep Supporters:
Improved experience for new users
For the past few months, we have only sent messages via e-mail to help you and other new users on their way. The biggest stumbling block was that we didn’t reach you in the right place or when you were actually using your Sleep Robot. That’s why we found a solution that allows us to send messages to new users at the right time and the right place: via the app when you’re actively using the Sleep Robot. By doing this, we want to make it easy for everyone to understand the Sleep Robot.
“I like the fact that everything is now in one central place.” – 100% of test users
Start your sleep adventure
If you are a Sleep Robot user, you can make use of all the benefits of Somnox Support 2.0. Download the update on iOS (click here) or Android (click here). If you don’t have one yet, you can order the Sleep Robot with our 30-night sleep trial. You will be actively supported by our new Somnox Support for 30 nights, so that you can finally feel rested again.
We value your feedback a lot. That’s why these updates are a direct result from your input.
To update your Sleep Robot, you have to have a stable connection between your Sleep Robot and your mobile phone. Make sure that your charger is not connected with the Sleep Robot while updating. Read an extensive guide on how to update your Sleep Robot:
You can download the latest update here on iOS and Android.
✨ 04/20: Adjust your speed in adaptive breathing
Our redesigned breathing screen allows you to set the start speed and end speed when adaptive breathing is on. This allows you to better adjust the robot’s breathing to your own rhythm!
✨ 02/20: Renewed introduction screen for new users
This update is focused on giving new users a better experience when introducing the Sleep robot!
✨ 12/19: New breathing programme designs
In this update we’ve improved the design and user experience of the breathing program selection, added more information about the breathing programs. Next to that, we’ve added the user’s name to the Hello message at the home and breathing tab. The lightning icon is now replaced with a standard Bluetooth icon!
✨ 11/19: Accessibility update
The application is now automatically adjusted based on the accessibility settings of your device.
📱 11/19: Somnox Support 2.0
Where can I find the right information? In the app? The manual? On a website? Or should I make a phone call? Why isn’t there one central point where I can find everything?
We heard you. Therefore we are pleased to announce the Somnox Support 2.0 – a new way to support you through an updated live chat, an always up-to-date knowledge base and support messages for new Sleep Robot users. Have all information available in one central place.
✨ Added: Somnox Support for improving communication between you and Somnox
✨ Added: Audio will fade out when the Sleep Program is ending
Read more on the different ways you can use this: https://somnox.com/blog/new-somnox-support-2-0/
🔨 10/19: New Welcome Screen
In this update, we focused on improving the existing features of the mobile application. We directed our efforts on improving stability, performance and the first user experience.
– Brand new first-time experience with the Somnox Companion App
– Logging in and signing up user experience and interface has been improved
– Improved Bluetooth communication with Sleep Robot in terms of stability and performance
– When creating an account with Somnox, you will receive onboarding emails based on your phone’s language settings now
– Fixed bug where Serial Number registration prompt-up was unnecessary
– Fixed a crash when no account is logged in somehow
– Sleep Robot updates can now be performed on the background
– Fixed a bug where performing a Sleep Robot update for the second time would result in a crash
– Fixed some translations issues
Important: Don’t swipe away the update notification on your Android phone, because this disrupts the update. Wondering how the notification will look like? See the image down below.
📱 08/19: Status Screen
During the feedback rounds in the past month, you asked us to display more valuable information about your Sleep Robot. In the past month, we have focused on delivering exactly that. We’re introducing the Somnox Status Screen, displaying:
– The battery status of the Sleep Robot
– The firmware update changelog of the Sleep Robot
– The installed software version of the Sleep Robot
Next to that, we did some behind-the-scenes maintenance to make the app more stable. At last, we’ve improved our support in German 🇩🇪.
🔋 07/19: Battery Improvements
The July 2019 update introduced the low power mode: once your Sleep Robot is turned off, it will consume 50% less battery than before. This creates an overall battery life improvement of around 20%.
✨ 06/19: Adaptive Breathing
The June 2019 update introduced a beta version of the Adaptive Breathing: your Sleep Robot will measure your breathing speed and automatically synchronizes itself to you. After this, it will gradually bring you to a slower and more relaxed breathing pattern. How to turn it on? Just enable the button on your Breathing home screen.
✨ 06/19: New Design
In the June 2019 update, we did a big overhaul on our Companion App design.
We’ve updated the design to:
Help you find the right settings straight away
Change the overall mood and atmosphere
Improve the readability for use during the evening
We did this by doing extensive research and create a more useful and intuitive navigation experience in the app. Next to that, we’ve added new icons and engaging illustrations to support you to use the app more intuitively.
🎵 06/19: Upload your own music
Because everyone has a different taste, we added the ability to upload your own music, audiobooks, podcasts or any other audio file to your Sleep Robot. You can learn how to do that by following the guide by clicking here.
The Somnox Sleep Robot soothes body and mind to help you fall asleep faster, sleep longer, and start your day feeling fully recovered and energized. It’s a unique device that regulates your breathing and plays audio at just the right time.
By hugging the Sleep Robot at night, you will feel it breathe, helping you adjust your rhythm accordingly. A few minutes and you’ll be breathing like a Buddhist monk! (For more information on breathing, click here.)
Apart from breathing with you, the Sleep Robot also uses smart audio to enhance your sleep. Listen to soothing sounds such as meditative music, ambient sounds and cognitive shuffling. They’ll turn off as soon as you fall asleep. Just let the Sleep Robot do the worrying for you. (For more info on sounds, click here.)
Being huggable and soft, the robot makes the user calmly doze off again. Say hello to the newest member of the family, your new sleep companion. (For more info on comfortableness, click here.)
Personal preferences can be set, such as during the day and ensure a tailored approach to improve the user’s sleep during the night. Users can also upload their audio files to the app (read on how to do so by clicking here).
Smarter Over Time
With the use of software updates, we are continually increasing the features and benefits of the robot and thus make it smarter over time.
30-night Sleep Trial
Try the Sleep Robot in your bed. Not satisfied? Get your money back, no questions asked. (See the full conditions on our website.)
Our team has been working for the past 3 years to make our dream come true: creating a healthier and happier world, doing our best to deliver smart soft robotics that will make a major difference in people’s daily lives. Want to join our mission?
Similar to development of the Sleep Robot, the design of the app is a process of many iterations. Starting from the basic functionality: setting the breathing movement of the sleep robot and audio settings towards creating a personal tool that helps you understanding the Sleep Robot and improving your sleep habits. In this blog, I want to explain the challenges in our design process.
The app will be used to set the different functionalities of the Sleep Robot to the user’s preference: the breathing movement and audio options. A brief introduction to both.
Someone’s breathing rate depends on physical and mental state as well habits. Some examples:
Professional athletes often breathe at a slower pace compared to those who never exercise.
Those who smoke a lot or consume high amounts of caffeine are more likely to breathe at a higher frequency
The level of stress is one of the most important variables for breathing rate. You might have experienced a stressful situation in which you noticed your breathing becoming faster or irregular, or even started to hyperventilate.
Thus, since the breathing rate is dependent on many different personal aspects, we want to provide the user with the possibility to adjust this setting. Next to that, there’s the breathing ‘ratio’, which is often described as a certain ‘pattern’ or implemented in a breathing exercise. Normally, you inhale, exhale and have a natural ‘pause’ in before you inhale again. When enlarging the duration of the exhalation, body and mind will relax.
These patterns have been implemented in breathing techniques as well. Do you know the breathing exercise of Dr. Andrew Weil? It’s slightly different with a pause in between the in- and exhale. By focusing on this pattern, people often fall asleep within no time. You might want to try that one tonight.
We are working on integrating different breathing patterns (created by experts and based on literature) as well. Do you think you want to use a validated pattern or create your own? We’d like to hear your preference. This feature will be included in a later update of the app.
There are tons of music genres and everyone has a different preference. Personally I like jazz, but you might like classical music, the latest pop-hits or easy listening.. Does it make you fall asleep? I like to listen to a bedtime story, while my mother likes to listen to Chopin’s piano pieces.
Since everyone’s preference is so different, we cannot provide standard audio settings along with the breathing settings. Therefore, we will integrate playlists with music and sounds that, based on research, be relaxing and soothing to your ears and mind. We are currently co-developing a set of music samples, natural sounds (such as rain, wind and thunderstorms) and voice samples (such as someone that tells you random words that prevents your mind to think about personal issues, similar to the cognitive shuffling method by Dr. Luc Beaudoin).
Next to that, we want to provide you with the possibility to add your own music to the Sleep Robot’s SD card. Which music makes you fall asleep? Let us know!
We have been brainstorming and iterating on how to translate the above story into an understandable app design. We want to design an app that doesn’t overwhelm you, and still provide you with the possibility to adjust everything to your preference.
But do people want to adjust it, or do we have to tailor everything automatically? How do we find a balance between those who want to be guided and provided with standard settings, and those who want to be in control of every detail? Do we have to make different versions of the app (e.g. a basic- and advanced version), or keep it simple in general? And how to provide enough information in the app or via a manual?
All challenges are related to the user experience and interaction with app and robot. We have done many tests and interviews to find out what people want. Some responses:
“I want to practice the breathing techniques during the day as well”
“I want the robot to adjust to my own breathing rate”
“I love to listen to the sound of a storm in the rainforest, a playlist that I have found on Youtube”.
“It sounds weird, but I actually fall asleep by listening to rock music”
“Actually, I believe that silence has been proven the best to fall asleep”
Iterations And Testing
We have tried many things in our process of designing the companion app. Different colours, different configurations, different ways to present the settings. We iterate a lot and test the designs in our team and during user tests (do people understand the interfaces, do they like it or get lost?). We have invited future users to come over to Delft, present the new designs to friends and family and have seen the design developing over time.
Final Design Or An Ongoing Process?
Currently, we are working on the software implementation of the final design. The design is based on the Somnox brand identity (soft, comfortable and clear) and the user’s desires on how to set the robot. We will guide the user by asking about the purpose of use (do you want to sleep or have a relaxing moment?) and desired duration of the movement. Not satisfied about the Sleep Robot’s movement? You will always be able to customize the breathing rate. In the future, we aim to add options if the user’s desire is there.
Some (pipeline)-ideas: adjusting the colour theme, adjusting the breathing movement, an integrated sleep diary, breathing exercises.. What (else) would you like to use?
Of course, we have not tested this app with all future users of the Sleep Robot yet. We will keep on asking for feedback to make sure we will update it. I’m curious to your opinion, let us know what you think.
An interview with the chief technology of the Somnox team, Stijn Antonisse. He tells us all about his experiences with the Kickstarter period and about what’s going to happen next.
The Kickstarter period went very well and brought €200,274 in investments. What’s going to happen next?
The coming months will be all about investing in fabrication equipment and the components of Somnox. Together with Auping, we will create Somnox out of these materials. Thanks to the Kickstarter period we’ve collected all the money we need to actually do these investments, because they are of course quite expensive.
‘The button to initiate the production line of Somnox can finally be pressed.’
How do you look back on the last weeks?
It was very hectic, there’s a lot of things coming at you. We’ve never expected to reach 70% of our goal in just the first day, and that we would achieve the actual goal in only 4 days. A crazy start to bring Somnox on the market!
Will the Somnox delivered to the people who’ve ordered them be exactly the same as Somnox is at this moment?
Mostly yes, aside from a few adaptations that will make Somnox even better than it is now. The model, the size etc. will all be the same. It is mainly about the adaptations to the software. The control panel and the software will be adapted to make them flawless and to optimize the interaction between Somnox and the user.
When can I expect my Somnox to arrive if I have ordered one through the Kickstarter page?
In the summer of 2018, the sleep robots will be delivered to the people who’ve ordered one through Kickstarter. In the coming six months, the Somnox will be further improved to be able to deliver an optimal Somnox sleep robot to your home.
Are you also still going to test with Somnox or is the test period over now?
We’re continuing the tests. Now that we have 10 fully functioning prototypes and enough money for logistics we can really iterate towards an optimal Somnox at launch. With the current prototypes, we can even let test sleepers keep Somnox for over a month instead of only one week. This will increase the accuracy of the results regarding the long-term use of Somnox.
The Kickstarter period is over now, can I still order Somnox?
At the moment you can order Somnox at Indiegogo with a 15% discount, though we’re not quite when this offer will expire. But from now on Somnox can be ordered anytime, though not always with a discount.
What does the future look like after the first batch in summer is delivered?
Eventually, our dream is to see Somnox being sold in retail stores where people can buy it and take it home straight away. Another idea that we have is to maybe work with a lease model. You pay a certain amount of money each month or year, and thereby you’re ‘renting’ Somnox.
Besides, we will always continue improving and optimizing Somnox. After the first batch delivery in summer, we will be very pleased to receive all the feedback to improve Somnox even further. We’ll not stand idly by!
The Somnox Sleep Robot has been designed to be a comfy, useful, and easy to use product. Comfort is mainly ensured by the ergonomic shape of the robot and the material used to cover it. The user hugs the Somnox sleep robot at night like a teddy bear, which means the shape of the Somnox Sleep Robot had to be carefully designed to be both easy to hug and pleasing to the eye. The materials that are used in Somnox have been carefully selected after reviewing and visiting several mattress factories. The sleeve is washable, fully breathable, and consists of natural fabrics. In addition to the breathing and audio function of the Somnox Sleep Robot, the huggability of the Somnox Sleep Robot creates affection which in turn contributes to a better night rest.
Why this shape?
The Somnox Sleep Robot shape is designed such that people maintain a natural position when hugging it without deviating from the natural neck and shoulder alignment. The curved shape of Somnox and the absence of sharp edges give a sense of peace and calmness since, as stated by Oshin Vartanian of the University of Toronto at Scarborough, humans prefer curves because they feel safer. The two-sphere-connected shape gives a sense of harmony, as the sphere shape allows higher volume over surface area ratio than other shapes. This is the principal reason why most natural objects ranging from water drops to planets are spherical.
How can affection lead to a better night of sleep?
Maybe some of you know what it’s like to sleep with a partner, sleeping together in a specific position, like spooning. Or maybe it only takes 10 minutes before you and your partner turn your back to each other and drift off. Either way, cuddling and the affection of your partner release chemicals that help you relax after a stressful day. These chemicals are hormones, called oxytocin. This hormone relieves pain, boosts your immune system, and relieves stress. Therefore, and that’s exactly where we’re heading, it can help you sleep (Kuchinskas, 2009). The study of Spiegelhalder et al (2017) showed that for both sexes, sleep quality was perceived to be better when sleeping together.
Three studies involving a total of around 1400 adults have shown that a deprivation of affection, the condition of receiving less affectionate communication than desired, is significantly associated with multiple facets of disturbed sleep and physical pain (Floyd & Hesse, 2017).
Of course, the Somnox Sleep Robot can never be compared to a partner, but it’s an inanimate object you can cuddle or spoon just as well. The Somnox Sleep Robot is designed to feel like having a sleeping companion through the night, like a living being instead of a mechanical robot. The Somnox Sleep Robot overcomes the archetype of robots by providing you all the good feelings that arise during the simulation of sleeping with someone.
Somnox’ shape is designed to allow the sleepers to comfortably place it on their chest, wrap their arms around it and hug it. In this way, the Somnox Sleep Robot can give you affection.
Holding an inanimate object when sleeping has many other benefits. There are many examples of people who hug their pillow at night. That way Somnox serves as a reminder for the brain during bedtime that it should start to settle down. In this way, it could function as “an environmental cue”. It can also function as a protective barrier during the night and therefore provide a sense of safety and security which will help to relax.
The fetus shape of the Somnox robot accommodates the fetal position that many people naturally adopt when they sleep. This natural adoption stems from childhood where we typically prefer the fetal position while sleeping and hold a stuffed animal or similar soft object.
Whether you’re an adult or child, everyone prefers the presence of a person, a stuffed animal, or Somnox over sleeping alone. There’s nothing wrong with that because adults often have problems with self-soothing skills. Somnox can promote these self-soothing skills and therefore take care of a better night’s rest (Owens, 2014).
Want to improve your sleep?
Our team has been working for the past 3 years to make our dream come true: creating a healthier and happier world, doing our best to deliver smart soft robotics that will make a major difference in people’s daily lives. You can try the Sleep Robot in your bed, with our 30-night trial. Not satisfied? Get your money back, no questions asked. (See the full conditions on our website.)