If you have an Amazon Alexa device that your voice can reach while you're in bed, you may be pleased to know that Swedish bed maker DUX has gotten together with smart speaker brand stellé to integrate Alexa smarts right into a bed. This is accomplished through an integrated smart speaker that sports Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity. Along with smart speaker capabilities, the module, which is mounted under the bed, also comes with a proprietary app that packs in a number of home automation capabilities and allows you to make some tweaks to how the whole package works together and what items it can control in your house. DUX's Alexa-enabled beds will begin rolling out in the US this May, and will be available in Queen, King, and California King sizes. The King size will retail for $4,950.
Background: DUX wants to use this Alexa-enabled Smart Module, essentially an Amazon Echo nailed to the bottom of your bed and festooned with a few extra features, to create "the ultimate sleep environment". While that claim is a subjective one, the ability to take care of last-minute stuff for the day, such as arming your home security system and making sure all your smart lights are off, will have a much smaller impact on your body's sleep cycle and the quality of your sleep if they can be done by voice, rather than sticking your face in a brightly-lit smartphone and focusing on finding and using the right apps for all of those jobs. DUX doubles down on this angle by integrating mood lights right into the Smart Module under the bed, which can double as a night light and allow fitful sleepers who have a TV on or rely on a dim traditional night light to finally unplug those in favor of something more specialized. Users can also enjoy music in bed, guided meditation, background noise, and any of the many other audio-centric features available via the Alexa ecosystem that could conceivably help one fall and stay asleep. As a side note, DUX mentions that its Smart Module makes a perfect companion for your DUX bed, so it may end up selling the module separately at some point. Judging by pictures of the Smart Module, it may not be that big of a feat to attach it to just about any bed, though future DUX models will likely have dedicated mounting hardware for it, if this ends up being the case.
Impact: Many studies have shown that taking your tech to bed with you is bad for your sleep, but this has been almost exclusively due to the light, blue or otherwise, emitted from those devices' screens. Settling in and having an audio book read to you, listening to some music or podcasts, or meditating before bed, all sans smartphone, promise to provide a more restful alternative to the usual bedtime routine for most dedicated tech lovers. You'll also be able to use Alexa first thing in the morning to get your smart home's morning routine going, check the news and weather, and more. While DUX's Smart Module and the bed that's being announced here are obviously niche luxury products that likely won't see a ton of market share, it's not hard to fathom this product kicking off a wave of smart beds that enable similar functions at a variety of price points.