Hello Sense won’t just tell you how well you slept; it will tell you why

As the movement to pack sensors into everything we own and quantify everything we do continues at a feverish pace, it’s become increasingly easy to track how active you are in a given day. But what about the other side of the equation? What about tracking how active (or inactive) you are at night? Getting a good night’s sleep is arguably just as important to you your mental and physical wellbeing as daily exercise, and there’s a new product on Kickstarter that aims to help do just that.

Designed by San Francisco-based startup Hello, Sense is an upcoming device that keeps tabs on your sleep activity each night. The idea here is that, with the help of more detailed information about the quality of your sleep, you can begin to make changes in your lifestyle to improve it.

It’s definitely not the first product if it’s kind, and there there are already a handful of products on the market that serve the same purpose — but that’s not to say that Hello Sense doesn’t bring anything new to the table.

Generally speaking, most currently-available sleep tracking systems rely on accelerometers to track your movement each night. Some more advanced ones use this thing called ballistocardiography to gather more detailed info, but even so, the fact remains that almost all currently-available sleep trackers focus solely on data gathered from you, and pay no attention to the environment you’re in. This is problematic because without this contextual information, it’s hard to pinpoint the reason why your sleep quality changes from night to night.

Sense aims to solve this problem. Unlike other sleep trackers, this device contains sophisticated sensors that are able to detect noise (in your bedroom and beyond), pick up on light (whether continuous or flashing), monitor temperature and humidity conditions, and even identify particulates such as dust and pollen. This means that if you’re roused from your slumber by something –say, a buzzing phone, car headlights shining in from the street, or simply too much moisture or pollen in the air– you’ll actually be able to figure out why just by looking at the data. Armed with this information, you’ll know exactly what changes you need to make to improve your sleep quality.

To raise funds for its first large-scale production run, Hello has turned to the crowdfunding community on Kickstarter, and it’s already blasted past its initial funding goal. At time of writing, the project has gathered more than $450K in pledges, and still has 28 days left in its campaign. If you back the project now, you can lock down a Sense sleep tracker for just 99 bucks — a full $30 cheaper than what it’ll eventually retail for. Once the Kickstarter campaign concludes, Hello expects to ship the first devices to backers as early as November.

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