There are a few ways to analyse your sleep. Wear a smartwatch. That’s what I do and whilst it works it can be a bit bulky depending on the watch, and it can be a little sensitive. If you move too much it’s triggered as waking up and your sleep cycle is stored, regardless of if you drift back off to sleep. The alternative is only possible if you have a significant other; they can constantly jab you when you’re snoring and you can add up those jabs in the morning to see how often you woke up! Thankfully there’s another way. The Withings Sleep Analyzer will sit under your mattress and deliver an impressive array of sleep metrics.
- Great design and comfort
- Detailed Readings
- Easy setup and use
- Cheaper sleep trackers can provide similar data
Overview & Unboxing
I, personally, have reviewed a number of Withings devices, and I keep going back to them for one main reason; they follow Apple’s simplistic methodology in practice in that their devices just work. Each and every device I’ve used from Withings has delivered at least the required usability, and each upgrade has improved that feature set.
The Withings Sleep Analyzer is a sleek, thin and unobtrusive piece of kit, echoed in the minimal packaging too (big tick!). But why do you need a device such as this? Simply put, there are multiple reasons why you might not be getting your beauty sleep. Stress, too active, not active enough, bed too firm, not firm enough, and many many more. There could also be some underlying health conditions contributing to it. Whilst none of these are earth-shattering themselves, they contribute to withholding you from being on top of your game. The Withings Sleep Analyzer looks to give you all the information you need to understand your sleep pattern and address it.
So, what is it? It is a small mat that fits under your mattress towards the top end of where you usually start your sleep. That mat then inflates slightly to allow sufficient contact with the user to measure movement.
In the box comes the Analyzer, a USB power adapter, as well as a quick start guide.
- Material: Premium fabric
- Length: 637mm (25″)
- Width: 190mm (7.5″)
- Thickness: 5mm (0.2″)
- Weight: 350 g (1.13 oz)
- Tracking Metrics:
- Sleep duration, apnea episodes, cycles: deep, light, REM phases
- Continuous and average heart-rate
- Snoring duration
- Power Supply: 5v 1A USB
Performance & Use
First things first, if you want to understand how the Health Mate app works, take a look at some of the other Withings reviews where we deep dive into how the app receives the data from Withings’ array of trackers and displays them in-app or via web interface. We’ll be concentrating on this specific device here.
After nearly a decade of wrist-worn devices for sleep tracking, it feels both strange and long overdue that Withings delved into the market with an actual mat. It makes perfect sense right? You sleep lying down (most of the time) and this should be able to monitor what you do way better than a wrist-worn device.
Slight disclaimer here, I don’t really have much of a problem sleeping. I go to bed, drift off relatively easily, and wake up when I’m supposed to, perhaps with a few disturbances throughout the night. Nothing major. However I have always believed that I don’t get enough deep or REM sleep, and wearing the Withings trackers seemed to back that up. I was keen to understand whether I’d get a little more data with the Withings Sleep Analyzer.
Simply place the mat under your mattress, plug in, pair with your smartphone, and sleep. I’ll say it again; it just works! Each morning, the mat will connect to your device, synchronise the data and reveal your Sleep Score – a score out of 100. You can then delve into deep metrics such as the type of sleep you achieved (light, deep, REM, etc) as well as disturbances and any recorded bouts of sleep apnea.
There are a few gotchas though. Whilst tracking sleep on a watch can be cumbersome, it has some advantages. For example, I like to go to bed and read for a short period before I drift off. The watch will read the consistent (yet not often) changes in my hand movements and not enable sleep tracking. Conversely, the Withings Sleep Analyzer will start to track from the moment I’m still enough, and well into my first or second page. Luckily this is easy enough to edit in the app after the sleep has been synchronised. It’s just something to be aware of.
Furthermore, I noticed a few occasions the Withings Sleep Analyzer noted I’d had no interruptions when I know I awoke many times in the night. This may be due to the mat simply believing I was turning in a restless sleep pattern. Again, this can be edited but it’s a shame it doesn’t pick it up all the time.
In addition, the fact the device has to be tethered to a power source might be irksome for some. If you’re not near a power outlet that will cause a bit of a re-jig. When reviewing the device I pondered on whether I’d actually want a large battery sitting under me as I tossed and turned. I’ll give that a miss and just live with the wire thanks!
Finally, and this is less of an issue if you take a wider view, it only provides data as to how you sleep. There’s little that it can actually do to improve your sleep. Yes, Withings include some blog posts about the importance of sleep, but this is all information you could learn elsewhere. I suppose what I’m saying here is that if you expect the Withings Sleep Analyzer to gentle turn you onto your side so as to avoid snoring and facilitate a deeper sleep, it won’t (that would be cool though). Just like with all data metrics, you need to provide some intelligence and correlation, to turn it into useful information. Just bear that in mind.
The Withings Sleep Analyzer goes into more depth than I personally thought I’d need, especially when compared to wrist-mounted watches of times gone by. It’s true that Withings’ own smartwatches are pretty adept and providing the same data as the Sleep Analyzer to an extent, but one is infinitely more comfortable than the other.
There’s a pricing discussion to have also though. You can get wrist-mounted sleep trackers that will give some if not all of these measurements for anywhere from £25 to £50.
If you value your comfort, the Withings Sleep Analyzer is a worthy addition to your smart home!