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Wearable computing startup Misfit, best known for its Shine activity tracker, announced plans to sell a new piece of hardware on Thursday. But unlike the Misfit-made Shine, you don’t wear this sensor-laden product — the Misfit Beddit Sleep System is “worn” on a bed, underneath the sheets.
Last month, Misfit announced that it intends to start licensing its proprietary sensor algorithms, starting with an app that uses the accelerometer on the Pebble smartwatch to turn it into a pedometer. The Beddit isn’t Misfit hardware — it’s an existing product made by a Finnish startup — but it is integrated with the Misfit app and is taking advantage of Misfit’s sleep tracking software. Unlike the Shine, Misfit isn’t making hardware, but is rather partnering with sensor makers to fill a specific niche with the Beddit — people who want to specifically track their sleep.
The Beddit is focused on measuring sleep cycles and quality. The actual device is a skinny, sensor-laden dongle that is meant to semi-permanently lie on top of a mattress. Sensors in the hardware measure a number of biometric signals, using ballistocardiography, movement, and sound data to estimate respiration, heart rate, and even snoring. The Beddit transmits this data to the Misfit app over Bluetooth. Later this fall, a new version will come out that uses the Bluetooth Low Energy standard.
Misfit’s Shine wearable has sleep tracking capabilities, but as Katie Fehrenbacher noted in her weekend with the wearable tracker, users have to activate the Shine by tapping it three times before starting an activity. So if you forgot to tap your Shine before hitting the hay, you’d lose your stats for the night. While the Beddit does requires a user to activate the device with the Misfit app, it is intended to remove a barrier to consistent sleep tracking by requiring less active participation from the user.
The Beddit Sleep monitor costs $150 — which is not that expensive for someone affected by, say, sleep apnea — and is available from the Misfit online store.
This story has been updated to clarify the nature of the Beddit Sleep System.