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Technology to Help You Sleep

Tech Talker explores several gadgets and apps that can help you wake up and go to sleep easier.

By
Eric Escobar,
February 20, 2014
Episode #113

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In this week's episode I'm going to be covering sleep technology.

I was talking with my friend Ellen who is a nurse. She was telling me about a lamp that she uses which is designed to simulate sunrise. Ellen uses it because she often has crazy shift hours, which will require her to sometimes sleep all day and work at night or wake up super early!

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This started a whole conversation about sleep technology and inspired this episode.

Wake-Up Light

First off let’s talk about Ellen’s lamp. This device is made by Philips and it's called the Wake-Up Light. You set a time that you want to wake up and it will gradually brighten with simulated sunlight. This allows your body to wake up naturally, rather than scaring you awake like most alarms.

The lamp has other features such as playing soothing sounds to help you wake up and of course, it can also be used as a regular lamp. It uses a replaceable halogen bulb.

Since I don't have strange work hours, I’ve never needed it. But for someone like Ellen, who routinely wakes up at 1am to go to work, it's a lifesaver and worth the hefty $99 price tag.

The Lark

Next up is the Lark. This little device is great for couples where each partner has to wake up at different times (or for the hearing-impaired). The Lark is a wristband with a built-in clock. You set an alarm time and it vibrates to wake you up. This way, it only wakes up the person wearing the wristband.

The Lark is controlled using your smartphone, and if you get the Lark Pro, it will track your sleep schedule and offer recommendations. The Lark is $49.

Let's say you don't want a $99 lamp or a $50 wristband to help you sleep and wake peacefully, but what about a $0.99 app?

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