Review: Withings Sleep Provides a Simple Way to Track Your Nights for $50 Cheaper than Apple’s Beddit

Sleep tracking has become a popular activity for many people, since the practice can result in major benefits to your daily wellbeing, restfulness, stress levels, and mental health. There are many ways you can go about tracking your sleep, and Apple itself sells a few products that can help, including the Apple Watch (paired with a third-party app like Pillow) and the Beddit Sleep Monitor.


Withings' solution to sleep tracking is similar to Beddit's, coming in the shape of a slim mat that you place beneath you as you sleep to automatically track and assess your sleep quality, heart rate, snoring, duration, and more. With the latest update, Withings Sleep can even detect breathing disturbances, and later this year the device will add an ability to detect the symptoms of sleep apnea.

Design and Setup


Withings Sleep is a 25" x 7.5" mat that has a straightforward design with a very nice and premium fabric finish, which matches well with the braided power cord. In reality, you don't ever really see Withings Sleep once it's placed where it needs to go, but it's easy to see that the company strived to make a nice-looking product despite the fact that it's not something everyone coming over to your house will see.


Withings Sleep is also super easy to install: you simply unroll the mat from the box, plug in the included USB power adapter into an outlet near your bed, and place Withings Sleep underneath your mattress at chest level.

This is a crucial difference between Withings and Beddit's sleep trackers, since the Beddit Sleep Monitor sits right below your fitted sheet and above the mattress. With Withings, I never noticed the mat while I slept, and some nights I even forgot that it was tracking my sleep. I just placed the mat under my mattress the first night, and guided the power cord through slats in my bed, and I haven't touched it or needed to adjust it since.


Once it's plugged in, Withings Sleep goes through a brief pairing process with the iOS Health Mate app [Direct Link]. If you're new to Health Mate, which is Withings' iOS hub app, you'll have to create an account with an email address, password, name, sex, birthdate, weight, height and consent to allowing Withings to process your personal data (which in this case could include your heart rate, sleep cycles, snoring episodes, etc). Withings says it does not sell your data, and only uses anonymized data to develop new products and services and sometimes conduct data studies.

After creating an account, Withings Sleep will calibrate and once that quick process is done the mat will be ready to track your sleep. This is done automatically, so the first time you sit in your bed to fall asleep, the sensors in the mat will begin accumulating data.

What Data is Tracked in the App?


Withings Sleep tracks the following nighttime data:
  • Sleep duration (this includes the time it takes you to fall asleep and wake up)

  • Sleep cycles (deep, light, and REM phases)

  • Continuous and average heart-rate

  • Snoring duration

  • Sleep quality score

  • Sleep regularity

  • Breathing disturbances
Each morning, this data is presented to you on the main "Timeline" tab of the Health Mate app, which also encompasses your daily steps (if you want to sync to Health), average heart rate, and your currently enrolled Wellness Programs. When you tap on a night you'll see your Sleep Score (Withings uses a basic 100-point scale), a chart of your sleep cycles, and all of the other tracked data in little squares.


Each of these can be tapped on to expand the data and to learn some more about each metric. Overall, Withings has taken a no-frills approach to presenting sleep data in its app, and I really appreciated how simple it was to understand my previous night's sleep. Over time you're also able to combine all of your data into weekly and monthly charts to really get a wide glimpse at your sleep habits.

Of course, the question is whether this data is helpful and can it actively change your sleep cycles for the better? In the weeks I've used Withings Sleep, I've found these data snippets to be fun and interesting recaps of my nighttime routines rather than integral stats that I could use to change any negative habits.


According to Withings Sleep, I don't have too many bad sleep habits. My Sleep Score consistently remained above 90 and -- as I could have told anyone before owning a high-tech sleep mat -- my worst area was always the time it took me to fall asleep. Withings's Wellness Programs told me to stop staring at my iPhone before bed and to dim my lights, but these are already things I do (or I at least have Night Shift enabled), and I've long since accepted the fact that I simply will always need to be in bed about 30 minutes before the time I actually want to be asleep.

Withings Sleep didn't really change that for me or provide new solutions to the issue, and there were a few problems with some of its findings, particularly with the time to get up stat. For every single day I've used the mat, it's placed my time to get up at zero minutes. I consistently set my alarm to go off earlier than I intend to actually get out of bed (another no-no according to Withings), which could be anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes. This is definitely a nuanced statistic that the mat missed every morning.

On the positive side of things, my time to sleep was always between 20 to 30 minutes (the app wanted me to be under 20), and on one particularly tiring day where I couldn't wait to get into bed, Withings Sleep tracked me at falling asleep in seven minutes, which proved very accurate.


Other stats that feed into your overall Sleep Score include interruptions, which was accurate save one or two nights when I know I was awoken by a loud noise before falling back asleep, which the mat didn't detect. The mat also tracked my breathing disturbances over the course of a few weeks, which was an interesting chart to watch evolve and the feature should become a bit more impactful when full sleep apnea detection is added later in 2019. Lastly, the snoring and heart rate tracking appeared consistently accurate throughout my testing, no matter what position I laid in at night.

As to the sleep cycle tracking, it's a bit harder for me to determine whether or not Withings' middle-of-the-night tracking is on point or not. Each night followed an expected falling asleep pattern: I first entered light sleep for about an hour to 90 minutes, fell into deep sleep for another 45 minutes, and then entered the Rapid Eye Movement (REM) stage. The pattern wasn't exactly the same every night, but Withings Sleep said I entered the REM stage about four to six times every night, which is accurate for the average adult.


Some irregularities appeared in the early morning and waking hours, where sometimes the mat indicated I was in REM sleep the minute I woke up and got out of bed. Most mornings I lightly doze in the minutes before I actually get up, and am definitely not in any sort of deep sleep.

After using Withings Sleep for a few weeks, I began questioning the method Withings was using to add up to my overall Sleep Score when I received a few 100, so-called "perfect nights." I had solid sleep duration, good depth, no interruptions, and decent regularity and time to sleep numbers, which is all good, but these nights didn't particularly stand out to me as exceptionally great or anywhere near perfect.


Withings says that it grants Sleep Scores that even reach above 100 in some instances, depending on the quality of each parameter on each night. Some parameters (like sleep duration) hold more weight than others, so if you get an extra lengthy night of sleep that's full of poorer, light sleep periods, you could still reach a near-perfect night. This exact example happened to me one night, resulting in a score that definitely did not mirror my fatigue the next day.

Wellness Programs


On the middle tab of the Health Mate app, Withings encourages users to participate in its Wellness Programs, which are daily activities that are built to help you meditate, sleep better, lose weight, learn more about cardiovascular health, track a pregnancy, and even compare activity stats with friends. I joined the mindfulness and sleep programs early on, and was largely disappointed with this aspect of the company's overarching health goals.

While the tab still has a sleek design like the rest of the app, the programs themselves feel hollow. Particularly the "Meditate with Petit BamBou" class that I joined for a few days, which has every traditional mindfulness exercise like body scans, posture work, anchored breathing, etc. I've been a big fan of Calm and have found some success with that app, and comparatively Withings' version is very anemic.


You can look at a schedule of the 21-day class, start a session, read about what you'll be doing that day, and then hit play. The UI in each daily session is poor and makes these additions feel like an afterthought, and the voice over work is a bit stilted and not relaxed enough. The classes will also move forward each day no matter if you've completed them or not, making it particularly confusing to keep track of your progress. On the plus side, I like that Withings adds in offbeat meditation days, like some that have a brief story to read or an animated video to watch.

The other Wellness Programs offer essentially the same idea as the mindfulness one, but focused on other topics. Unfortunately, there is some bugginess to this area of the app, as I consistently could not continue my Sleep Smarter program and got an error message every day.

IFTTT Automation


With Withings Sleep, you can connect the mat to other IFTTT automation platforms and activate lights or thermostats just by getting in to or out of your bed. Keeping with other aspects of Withings Sleep, this is something that I've been enjoying during my time with the mat and it works quite well, but it felt a bit like a superfluous addition to my daily schedule.

That's especially true of the Nest Learning Thermostat IFTTT integration. With this automation, I set my Nest thermostat to drop to 65 degrees when I got into bed at night, and then to rise to 72 degrees when I got out of bed in the morning. This is something that is entirely unnecessary because the Nest Learning Thermostat's main draw is that it learns your schedule and automates a weekly routine for you, so even before Withings Sleep my thermostat was dropping around 9 p.m. every night and rising at 6 a.m. every morning.


The Philips Hue automation offers a bit more utility. Before Withings Sleep, when I would get into bed I would activate my Goodnight HomeKit scene via a nearby HomePod, which turns off all my Philips Hue lights and turns on my bedside fan. Thanks to the Withings Sleep IFTTT automation, I was able to turn off my lights simply by getting into bed (there is about a 10 second delay), so I didn't need to speak to turn off the lights. However, I did still need to use HomeKit to activate the iDevices smart plug connected to my fan.

This slightly expedited my bedtime routine, but not in such a way that it felt like I couldn't just go back to using Siri. There were also some nights where I wanted to get into bed and keep the lights on to read, and although you can set boundaries to activate the IFTTT scene only during certain times of the day, the feature lacks any more nuanced settings.


Lastly, there were some bugs with the IFTTT features of the Withings Sleep, although they were rare. One evening, I began receiving frequent notifications on my iPhone that my IFTTT applet had been activated, turning off my lights and dialing down my Nest. I was on my couch at the time and no one was in my bed, and the notifications became so frequent (about 20 within 5 minutes), that I eventually had to temporarily turn off each applet in the IFTTT app. I turned them on again the next day and things went back to normal.

Bottom Line


Withings Sleep is a worthy addition to the growing sleep tracker market, and it earns a lot of points for its unobtrusive placement, clear-cut app statistics, and mostly accurate sleep data. For someone who wants to take an active approach to tracking their sleep, Withings is a good place to start, but there are caveats.


Some of the mat's data readouts aren't consistent, the app can be buggy, its Wellness Programs aren't very deep, and the various IFTTT automations are more of an interesting afterthought rather than a selling point. For $99.95 ($50 cheaper than Apple's $149.95 Beddit device), these downsides are easier to deal with, especially because the company has already committed to ongoing updates for the mat, like the sleep apnea detection add-on coming later in the year.

How to Buy


Withings Sleep is available to buy for $99.95 on the company's website and on Amazon.

Note: Withings provided MacRumors with a Withings Sleep mat for the purposes of this review. No other compensation was received. MacRumors is also an affiliate partner with Amazon, so you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.


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Withings Sleep Now Tracks Breathing Disturbances, Full Sleep Apnea Detection Coming Later This Year

Connected health company Withings today announced new features coming to its sleep sensor mat, Withings Sleep, which will help track and provide detailed information about breathing disturbances during the night. This feature is available to all Withings Sleep owners today, and is the first step towards more advanced sleep apnea detection, which is coming later in 2019.

Withings says that a breathing disturbance can be any sign of troubled breathing that happens at night, which can be fairly common but goes unnoticed by most people. While these disturbances can be harmless, when they happen more frequent and become more intense, they have the chance to impair sleep quality and act as a sign of a chronic illness such as sleep apnea.


With breathing disturbances tracking on Withings Sleep, users will be able to identify early warning signs of these issues. Withings Sleep itself is a slim mat that you place under the mattress to track sleep cycles, heart rate, snoring, and more. The new feature monitors all of these statistics to track the intensity of breathing disturbances.

Each disturbance is then rated in the Health Mate app, from low to high, while providing monthly charts to see how your progression has been. The app also provides educational content so you can learn how these disturbances impact sleep, blood pressure, fitness, and weight, and seek proper medical care if needed.


Withings notes that these features are the "first step" towards launching a full sleep apnea detection update on Withings Sleep, planned for the end of 2019 and dependent upon FDA and CE clearances. According to Withings, the Withings Sleep is the first device to offer breathing disturbances detection on a non-intrusive in-home sleep tracking system.
“Despite its prevalence and serious consequences, sleep apnea goes largely undetected as current tests are confined to the clinical and sleep lab environment,” says Eric Carreel, President of Withings. “By allowing people to track the intensity of breathing disturbances, we are helping them identify warning signs early. This announcement is very important as it furthers our mission to bring medical grade analytics into the home and is the first step towards the medical certification of sleep apnea detection which we aim for by the end of this year.”
Withings Sleep is a direct competitor to the Apple-owned Beddit sleep monitor system, which is a flexible strip placed under a sheet on top of a mattress that tracks sleep time, heart rate, respiration, temperature, movement, and more.

Those with the Withings Sleep can update their device with breathing disturbances tracking starting today, through the Health Mate iOS app. Withings sells the Withings Sleep for $99.95 on its website and on Amazon.


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CES 2019: Withings Unveils 3-in-1 Cardiovascular Monitor and Analog Smartwatch With ECG Feature

French consumer electronics company Withings has announced a trio of new wearable products at CES, including a three-in-one health monitor and two smartwatches, one with electrocardiogram (ECG) capability.


The health monitor is an upper arm cuff called the BPM Core that can take blood pressure, valvular health, and ECG readings, the latter of which can identify atrial fibrillation or irregular heartbeat in users.

The cuff inflates to take the blood pressure readings and heart-rate measurements, and displays them on the built-in LED matrix display, which includes instant traffic-light feedback showing normal, moderate, and high blood pressure readings.

To use the ECG function, the wearer has to place the hand of their other arm on the stainless steel sensor for 20 seconds, while the digital stethoscope involves placing a sensor on the user's chest for 20 seconds. In-depth results are sent wirelessly to the Withings Health Mate app.

Withings says its BPM Core is currently awaiting FDA clearance but that the cuff should go on sale for $249 in the second quarter of this year.


The company's two new analog-face fitness trackers come under the Move moniker and both track activity and sleep, with the Move ECG also able to take electrocardiogram readings when users touch both sides of the bezel.

The watches can recognize activities including running, walking, and swimming, feature water resistance up to 50 meters and up to 12 months of battery life.

The Move will initially be available in five color options priced at $70, with pre-orders now open and shipping expected to begin on February 5. The Move ECG comes in white and black, costing $130, and will be available in the second quarter of 2019. See the Withings website for more information.



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Withings Announces ‘Pulse HR’ Fitness Tracker With 20-Day Battery Life

Withings today announced the Pulse HR, the first all-new addition to its health and fitness tracker range since the French company relaunched two months ago.

Reviving the classic design of Withings Pulse – the first tracker Withings ever launched in 2013 – Pulse HR matches an OLED display in stainless steel casing with a silicone wristband that comes in several optional colors.


Under the Pulse HR is a PPG heart rate sensor capable of measuring pulse at 10-minute intervals and continuous heart rate measurements during workout sessions, which include a full breakdown of HR zones synced to the Health Mate app.

By raising their wrist or using the tracker's button, users can scroll through time/date, heart rate, calories burned, activity goal progress, real-time workout information, and smartphone notifications.

Like the Withings Steel HR smartwatch, Pulse HR includes multi-sport tracking for over 30 different activities from yoga, volleyball, and rowing to boxing, skiing and ice hockey. It also offers GPS-connected automatic activity recognition for over 10 activities including walking, running and swimming, and is water resistant up to 50 meters.

The 20-day battery life enables full sleep tracking, including a Smart Wake-up feature that can wake users with vibration alarms at the most optimal times during their sleep cycle.


Pulse HR begins pre-orders today and will ship in time for the holidays on December 5, priced $129.95. Additional information is available on the Withings website, where customers can browse its full range of fitness trackers and other connected products like scales, blood pressure monitors, smart thermometers, sleep trackers, and more.


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Withings Brand Returns With ‘Steel HR Sport’ Hybrid Smartwatch

Withings has returned with a new hybrid smartwatch offering, after one of the company's co-founders bought the brand back from Nokia earlier this year.

Back in 2016, Nokia acquired health startup Withings in a deal estimated at $192 million, hoping to re-establish its presence in the consumer electronics market. It did so by rebranding Withings' line of iOS compatible products under its own name.


But by May 2018, the acquisition was considered a failure, and Nokia announced its intention to sell the division back to Withings co-founder, Eric Carreel. Carreel promised a "relaunch" of its products by the end of 2018, and today's arrival of the Steel HR Sport smartwatch is apparently just the start.

The Steel HR Sport shares many of the features as the Steel HR smartwatch which Nokia released in 2016, such as the heart-rate monitor, sleep tracking, smartphone notifications, and 25-day battery life. But it also packs some additional new features, like the ability to track 30 different activities (yoga, rowing, boxing, skiing, and so on).


Water resistance is now up to 50 meters, while new oxygen intake sensors allow the watch to measure variables like VO2 max, which is supposed to be a good indicator of overall health. Connected to a smartphone, the Steel HR Sport is also able to GPS-track walking, running, and cycling workouts with distance, elevation, and pace metrics recorded in the accompanying iOS Health Mate app.

In addition, the digital readout on the analogue watch face has been tweaked to show notifications from over 100 apps, as well as regular alerts for calls, text messages, and calendar events.

The Steel HR Sport comes in a single 40mm size, costs $200, and is available to order online today from the Withings website or from Amazon.


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Withings Co-Founder Buys Back Digital Health Company From Nokia, Relaunch Planned This Year

Back in 2016, Nokia acquired health startup Withings in a deal estimated at $192 million, hoping to re-establish its presence in the consumer electronics market. Nokia did this by rebranding Withings' iOS compatible products under its own name, with devices like the Withings Steel Watch and Withings Go fitness trackers becoming the Nokia Steel and Nokia Go.

Unfortunately for the company, the acquisition has largely been seen as a failure, with the digital health division earning just $62.4 million in 2017, part of Nokia's overall $27.9 billion in revenue for the year. Because of this, the company announced earlier in May that it would sell the division back to Withings co-founder, Eric Carreel, and today that deal has officially closed (via TechCrunch).


Financial terms were not given for the sale, but it is said to have included 200 employees rejoining Carreel under the Withings brand. Moving forward, Carreel said that the next steps for the renewed Withings brand will be a "relaunch" of its products focused on preventive health coming by the end of 2018.
“I am delighted to start working again with the brilliant teams that made the brand such a great success” said Carreel in a statement. “We have an exciting challenge ahead of us as we continue to push the boundaries of connected health.”

“We are still only just starting to discover what connected health can really bring to people,” said Carreel in a statement. “From now on we must concentrate our efforts on developing tools capable of advanced measurements and the associated services that can help prevent chronic health conditions. Today’s technologies allow us to imagine solutions that have the potential to benefit the lives of millions of people, and our ambition is to ensure that we, as Withings, lead the way with technological advances and intuitive designs.”
Withings offers connected products like scales, activity tracking smart watches, blood pressure monitors, smart thermometers, sleep trackers, and more, and according to TechCrunch it "sounds like it will keep all of these in place" after the relaunch. The news of the deal closing also brought confirmations of an executive shakeup in Nokia, with president Gregory Lee exiting Nokia and Maria Varsellona stepping up to the duty from a chief legal officer position.

In late 2016 Nokia and Apple entered a series of legal battles that began when Nokia sued Apple for patent infringement in the United States and Germany. As the dispute escalated, Apple decided to remove all Withings products from Apple.com and most Apple retail locations around the world, since the connected health devices were at the time under the Nokia umbrella. Although many of the Nokia-branded products have since returned to Apple.com, Withings should have a much easier time selling its smart scales and more when it returns to its original branding scheme later this year.


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Nokia to Sell Digital Health Division Back to Withings Co-Founder

Nokia has revealed plans to sell its digital health business back to the co-founder of Withings, the French health tracking company Nokia bought in 2016.

Finland-based Nokia originally acquired Withings for $192 million in an effort to re-establish a presence in the consumer electronics market, rebranding Withings' iOS-compatible smart connected home products as well as a range of health and fitness wearables.


However, it looks as if the acquisition simply didn't pay off for the erstwhile mobile phone powerhouse. In 2017, the digital health division earned just $62.4 million in revenue, but the rest of the company posted sales of $27.9 billion. Now Nokia is handing back the business to Withings' co-founder, Éric Carreel. The sale will likely be at a significant loss, although the Nokia press release didn't mention figures:
Nokia announced a review of strategic options for the Digital Health business in February 2018. The planned sale is part of Nokia's honed focus on becoming a business-to-business and licensing company. The transaction is subject to terms agreed in the negotiations and completion of the information consultation with the Works Council of Nokia Technologies (France) SA., with the deal expected to close in late Q2 2018.
The announcement follows recent reports of layoffs from the company, as well as a leaked memo that revealed the digital health division was in a bad way with little prospect of turning things around. Then in October, Nokia announced a $164 million write-down of the division's assets. Google and Samsung were reportedly looking into taking the ailing health business off Nokia's hands, but today's announcement suggests nothing substantial came of the negotiations.


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After a Year-Long Delay, the Nokia Steel HR Hybrid Smartwatch is Now Available for Pre-Order

Nokia has announced that its Steel HR hybrid smartwatch will ship in time for the holiday season, almost a year after it was supposed to launch under the Withings moniker.

The watch was first announced in September 2016, but its scheduled launch the following month never happened as Nokia began negotiating its takeover of Withings, which was eventually finalized in June.


Shortly thereafter, Nokia relaunched several Withings products under the Nokia brand, including the Nokia GO and Nokia Steel watches, as well as Nokia BPM+ and Nokia Body+ connected devices.

The Steel HR finally joins the existing line-up and will be available in 36mm and 40mm case sizes. It features a simple and stylish analog watch face with unobtrusive digital meters for tracking heart rate and movement over the course of the day. In addition, the watch features automatic and learned activity tracking for over 10 activities, a comprehensive sleep monitor, and text, call and event alerts.

Nokia says it has also made some software improvements to the smartwatch since its Withings iteration, including an improved heart rate algorithm to ensure more accurate tracking. A design change has also been made that replaces the face with sapphire glass to guarantee up to 50 meter waterproofing.

The Steel HR syncs with the Nokia Health Mate iOS app, costs $179.99, and is available to pre-order from the Nokia website in either black or white.


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