Let’s get this out of the way: I am sleeping with a robot. (No, not like that, you sicko.) I hold it in my arms each night and feel its chest rise and fall against mine. Without arms to hold me back, it is forever my little spoon. Without a voice to bid me sweet dreams, it simply sits there, purring against me.
The robot with which I sleep is called the Somnox. The $600 device promises to help its bedtime companions fall asleep more quickly, sleep more deeply, and wake up more refreshed—all by simply cuddling. It is shaped like an oversized butternut squash and covered in baby-soft fabric; contained within is a motorized breathing mechanism, which expands and contracts like a lung in miniature. Hold it against you and, without much effort, your breathing begins to synchronize with it. This slows down your heart, which makes you feel relaxed, which guides you gently and swiftly toward sleep.
The Somnox was created by four engineering students in the Netherlands who, in their course of study, were left “personally exposed to the effects of sleep deprivation.”. They put the Somnox on Kickstarter in 2017, offering better sleep in exchange