Google’s latest Nest Hub smart display can analyze your sleep and help you get a better night’s rest – all without wearing any sort of tracker. I’ve been sleeping with it near my bedside and I now know more about my sleep than ever before.
“We were kind of astounded actually with how many people were struggling with sleep,” started Ashton Udall, a Google product manager with Nest.
The Nest Hub 2nd generation, as it’s officially called, is very similar to the company’s first smart display – it can handle all of your typical smart home commands, like playing music, checking the weather and turning lights on and off. But Google learned that a lot of people preferred to put the original display in the bedroom since there is no camera on it. That gave them the idea to put sleep tracking tech in the latest version.
“We really wanted to gear the experience towards helping people make improvements in their sleep,” explained Udall.
The latest Hub now contains a tiny radar sensor called Soli. It’s tech that first appeared in the 2019 Pixel 4. There is still no camera, so you can feel more comfortable having it at your bedside.
“[Soli] gives you a really rich resolution of what happened with sleep through measuring human motion but at the same time there’s nothing intelligible that you can tell otherwise that’s not sleep-related in the environment,” explained Udall.
After a brief setup, just be sure the device is angled towards your body. Google has a little test you can run to be sure it’s aimed just right.
Then, just go to bed. There’s no need to tell it to start or stop, or wear any sort of physical tracker.
In the morning, you can see your sleep stats on the screen, or on your smartphone. You will need to download the Google Fit app to your iPhone or Android to see the info.
You’ll see information including how long you sleep, how long you were in bed, your sleep efficiency, when you got into bed and when you woke up. Other analytics include how long you were in bed before you fell asleep and how long it took you to get up (aka did you hit the snooze button).
There’s also a bar graph that shows any disturbances in your sleep, including when you were restless and how often you snored or coughed while in bed.
Finally, there is a chart of your respiratory rate.
It’s pretty amazing data, especially since it’s all collected automatically and without worrying about charging a smartwatch, setting a bedtime mode or wearing a bulky device.
After it collects enough data, Google will offer insights into your sleep and suggestions on how to make it better. For instance, Google says my bedtimes are inconsistent, which could be contributing to a feeling that I’m not getting enough sleep.
Overall, I’m super impressed, and if you’re having trouble with your sleep, this gadget could be one way to help you figure out what’s going on and ways to improve it.
The Google Nest Hub 2 is available now for $100. Google says your sleep data remains private.
“We’ve made very clear commitments that this data will not be used for ads,” said Udall.
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