Eight Days on the Eight Sleep Pod

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I recently recieved the Eight Sleep mattress I ordered a few weeks ago, and a lot of my friends have asked me about it. Online mattress reviews are notoriously bought and fake more often than they’re real, so here’s my thoughts as someone who has owned a whopping three mattresses in their life.

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what is this thing?

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I will let their site explain more but basically – it’s a great foam-based mattress with a zipper at the bottom. On top of this goes the cover, which is like a topper with a bunch of tubes in it that zips on to the mattress. The tubes go into the Pod™, a black obelisk that cools (or heats?) the water and connects to Wifi to enable all the smart connectivity.

smart connectivity in a mattress?

Yes, and it’s actually pretty nice. I previously used a Withings under-bed sleep sensor, and the Eight has it built in (it also integrates with IFTTT so you can program it to do whatever you want when you wake up, for example). Under bed sensors are more accurate in my experience than wrist-based sensors like (poorly-performing) Fitbit or Galaxy Watch and even the very-good Oura Ring. The bed will tell you  how long it took for you to get to sleep, how you slept, in what sleep stages,and how long it took you to get out of bed after you woke up. It can also tell if you’re tossing or turning, and what your heart rate is through the night. Uniquely, it can also tell you your respiratory rate, which I haven’t seen other wearables offer. The Pod itself will also read the air temp and humidity, and adjust accordingly.

Of course, for the King size, you can program which side of the bed you sleep on, and invite your partner to the app. Each site can be heated or cooled independently, and based on your preferences, you can configure the bed temperature to change through the night and get much warmer or colder to wake you up (the bed can also vibrate as an alarm).

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is it worth it?

After a night: yes. I sleep hot and the bed gets impressively cold. The reccomended cold level for me of -6 (out of 10, -10 being coldest and 10 being warmest) was almost too cold for me(!) It does work as advertised in almost every way, temperature, alarms, smart connetivity and all.

almost every way?

There are a few caveats. The Pod is 2.4GHz only, which I wouldn’t quibble with becuase it’s a mattress, but it also can’t stay connected properly. Setup was easy except for the part where it disconnected from the wifi every couple of minutes. One of the big negatives I read of Eight Sleep before purchasing was the relability of the Pod, and this didn’t give me confidence. After manually setting the 2.4GHz channel to the lowest utilized one in my area, it did stay connected through the night.

The Pod also requires distilled water and hydrogen peroxide to refill, a fact Eight Sleep does not seem keen to advertise.

The checkout page also included a “free” Eight Plus membership. I swear they tried to charge for this at one point, but it’s free “forever” now.

As with every negative, it’s a big We’ll See. If the Pod breaks down, or they lock features behind a membership, Eight can expect some negative feedback on the over-$4,000 sleep system, but until then, I love it.

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Update 1 (10/16/2021):

Well, it leaked. Some hole in the active grid dumped two or three canisters of water in the mattress before I realized something was up (I had come back from the ER a few hours before and was not in the best mental state as I filled it up again and again). To Eight Sleep’s credit, they processed the reutrn right away and I should have a new Active Grid and mattress in a week. Fingers crossed, but this is exactly what I was afraid of. What if this happened over a year in?

Update 2 (11/5/2021): About a week after I reported the break to Eight Sleep, they sent me an all new mattress, active grid, and pod (I don’t know why they sent the pod — the pod was fine. I told them that and they seemed like they either sent it on accident or didn’t have a way of unbundling the Pod from the Grid — they arrive attached together). Now we wait to see if it happens again in six months.

Update 3 (4/21/2022): It sprung another (smaller and less consistent, oddly) leak. Eight replaced just the cover this time. Despite the problems, it’s more comfortable than any other mattress I’ve ever been on — I just hope the warranty holds up.


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