Right after college, I ended up moving in with a roommate and had to look for a bed for the new apartment I called home. After shopping around and doing my research, I ultimately ended up buying a futon of all things — mainly for the convenience of converting it from a couch to a bed and back again. Fast-forward a couple more years, and I was paying $500 for a queen mattress. That whole experience convinced me that it would be a waste of money to pay more than $500. I was wrong.
It’s funny how things go because I believed that $1,000 beds didn’t hold the same value as, say, a top-of-the-line smartphone. I’m referring to the Apple iPhone 12 Pros of the world — in addition to everything else out there that starts at $1,000. That’s a little less than what you’d pay for a queen-size Sleep Number smart bed. But after trying one out for the last couple of months, I’ve become a firm believer that this bed holds more value than a smartphone. Allow me to explain.
Smartphones are incredibly powerful, but we spend a lot of time in our beds — and it’s not just sleeping I’m talking about. Factor in activities such as watching TV, the unwinding time getting acquainted in bed before sleeping, and yes, all those naps, and the time adds up, which is how I’m able to fully understand the value of a bed. A queen-size Sleep Number 360 i8 Smart Bed comes in at more than $3,000. It’s part of Sleep Number’s Innovation Series, which features pressure-relieving comfort layers as well as a breathable fabric that better absorbs excess heat, so you can sleep cooler. The queen-size version of the Sleep Number 360 C2 Smart Bed is priced lower at $1,200 but still has the most notable feature that makes Sleep Number beds fantastic — the ability to customize the firmness.
I can’t tell you how this one single feature has made me look forward to bed each night. There’s just something about slowly sinking into the mattress as it reaches my preferred Sleep Number setting of 35. And it’s even better when I move to sleep on my side and the mattress automatically adjusts to the change.
“Quality sleep is invaluable as it affects every aspect of your health — physical, mental, and emotional. Without quality sleep, your days, long-term health, and even your lifespan are impacted,” said Stacy Stusynski, who knows a bit about this topic as VP of Product Development of SleepIQ Technology.
We’ve all experienced how a lack of sleep can adversely impact our activities the next day. And when I think about how much time we spend in our beds, I realize this is just as important as the time we spend on our smartphones. “Just 15 more minutes of quality sleep per night — which adds up to 100 more hours per year — is meaningful,” Stusynski said. Imagine what you could do if you could get that much more sleep.
Most people judge their sleep based on how they wake up the next day, but they neglect other things that determine a good night’s rest. Of late, I’ve been engaging in discovering my SleepIQ score. The Sleep Number Smart Bed is able to gauge restlessness during the night, in addition to the amount of time I get out of bed because the cats are nagging me for food or I have to go to the bathroom. All this is tracked, resulting in a SleepIQ score from 0 to 100.
This helps me to achieve qualitative sleep because my SleepIQ score is indicative of my physical well-being. Lower scores under 70 validate my feeling of exhaustion as I start my morning. If my score is anything above 80, I feel more rested. Sleep Number goes deeper with its tracking, monitoring biometrics during sleep such as heart and breath rate, which is swell considering that I don’t have to wear something — smartwatches and fitness trackers have to be worn.
The Sleep Number bed’s “proprietary, dynamic algorithm measures sleep time, restful and restless sleep, heart rate and respiratory rate,” Stusynski said. “A.I. and data science enable the automatic adjustments to improve sleep and provide actionable, individualized insights for our sleepers.” I wouldn’t have thought about these insights while sleeping on a conventional mattress until I discovered these ways to validate sleep on a smart bed.
There’s one other reason a Sleep Number bed holds more value than a smartphone: Its untouchable warranty. Sleep Number’s warranty puts everything else to shame. Most devices tend to have one-year warranties, but Sleep Number offers a 15-year limited warranty on its smart beds, while the first year is covered by a full warranty. That means if there’s a defect with the mattress, perhaps a malfunction with how it is pumped with air, the full warranty covers the bed in the first year. After the first year, defects are still covered, but owners would essentially pay a percentage of the cost for repairs covered by the warranty. It’s still better than paying 100% for a repair or replacement.
Investing in a smart bed probably is one of the smartest decisions you can make. While some folks have no problem forking over $1,000-plus every couple of years for a new phone, the money you invest in a smart bed, like those from Sleep Number, easily will cover you for a decade. It’s not like most people are buying or replacing mattresses every couple of years.
So, the next time you scoff at the cost of a smart bed, you should think twice. I know I did.
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