Dr. Mark Aloia, Sleep Expert & Global Lead for Behaviour Change, Philips Sleep & Respiratory Care

The mind has long been respected in the East, Buddhists set aside time daily to clear the mind, Westerners on the other hand place importance on cleansing the physical body (and generally not the mind). A shift is taking place with many futurists predicting mental exercise, meditation and mindfulness will be practised by more people around the world than any form of physical exercise which makes sense as we transition from a manual workforce driving global economies to a mental one driving automation and intelligence. Our minds will become more important than what the physical body is capable of.

Evidence of this is emerging amongst consumer electronic companies who are creating a whole category of mind evaluation, stabilisation and control related devices. I had the pleasure of asking Dr. Mark Aloia, Sleep Expert & Global Lead for Behaviour Change, Philips Sleep & Respiratory Care a few questions about their new SmartSleep product and what is happening within this space.


What is Philips SmartSleep? What does it do and how can it help with health and my lifestyle?
Philips SmartSleep is the first technology that is clinically proven to enhance the wearer’s deep sleep. It is a light and adjustable wearable headband uniquely designed with two small sensors that detect periods of slow wave sleep and intervene with clinically proven technology to boost it in real time. The device pairs with Philips SleepMapper mobile application to track sleep patterns over time in addition to the performance of the slow wave boosts a person receives overnight. Designed for people between the ages of 18 to 50 who don’t get enough sleep due to lifestyle, it increases natural slow wave sleep activity with customized tones to improve the wearer’s sleep quality, which will in turn improve energy and alertness the following day.


Is the device medically approved?
The FDA classifies this product as a Wellness Device and not a medical device, so FDA approval is not required. That said, SmartSleep has been registered with the FDA.


How long does SmartSleep need to be worn for in order to benefit long term?
We recommend two weeks of use to start seeing the best results. In fact, consumers who don’t get enough sleep due to their various lifestyles who used the device for at least two weeks reported feeling more refreshed and energized, in addition to feeling less sleepiness throughout the day.

There seems to be many mindfulness orientated wearables on the market, all carrying out a variety of functions. Tell me more about whats happening in this space? Why now, whats driving product innovation and why have Philips decided to be a part of it?

While we are certainly interested in watching this trend emerge around mindfulness and encouraging meditation through apps and technology, SmartSleep is a product rooted in sleep science. It was developed by scientists and researchers who reviewed neurocognitive outcomes from clinical trials that showed improved sleep quality, executive function and verbal fluency. It isn’t designed to help the wearer to relax, fall or remain asleep, but to optimize the sleep that wearer gets. Mindfulness is certainly important to our ability to wind down in a particularly hectic world, but we designed SmartSleep with the occasional unavoidability of that hectic world in mind. SmartSleep is for today’s adult whose fast-paced and ever-evolving lifestyle comes at the expense of consistent, quality sleep.

What trends do you see in our future lifestyles that make products such as SmartSleep valuable?
Philips envisions a future where its total sleep ecosystem can be utilized to improve sleep and, ultimately, lives. By leveraging knowledge in the true functionality of sleep and sleep stages, the company has the opportunity to make headway toward that ultimate vision. Guided by the understanding that restful nights lead to energetic days, Philips strives to research and develop innovative empowering tools, products and services that are supported by clinical research and technical data.


What future technologies do you see emerging? What kind of data and value can we expect to see from future mindfulness orientated wearables?
I anticipate seeing more innovative solutions to address challenges in the healthcare market in new ways. However, with these mindfulness applications and wearables emerging every day, the industry needs to root the innovation of these tools in science and market need. As part of this growing ecosystem, SmartSleep builds on Philips’ leadership in sleep therapy and more than 2.6 billion nights of sleep data collected by Philips over the last 10 year and showcases how we are uniquely positioned to combine clinical know-how with a superb consumer experience. It will be interesting to see how other companies approach this kind of innovative technology in the next few years alongside Philips.


For more information on Philips SmartSleep click here: https://www.usa.philips.com/c-e/smartsleep-ces.html

SmartSleep Front ViewSmartSleep Sensor (1)SmartSleep iPhone App Download

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