Breathe with the robot pillow • TechCrunch
From the team that brought you the weird and wonderful robot cat pillow comes an equally weird and wonderful breathing pillow. Japanese boutique robotics company Yukai Engineering returns to CES with Fufuly, which follows in Qoobo’s footsteps, literally giving a cushion a little life.
The hardware startup claims the product uses “breath entrainment,” which refers to a phenomenon where the rhythm of a patient’s breathing matches that of a ventilator. Here, that essentially means that the person’s breath matches the robot’s cushion, rather than the other way around.
Yukai says the product was developed based on research from the University of Tokyo. Certainly, much has been written about the power of the breath in improving mental state and reducing anxiety. This is precisely the reason why breathing is so closely linked to meditation, for example.
There’s no app, and really, not much intelligence here (and unlike Qoobo, it doesn’t respond directly to user stimulus). Instead, you cycle through three modes: regular, deep, and third designed to help the user relax.
Via the Fulfuly website [translated from the Japanese], “It’s very easy to use. Light it up and embrace it. That’s all you need. If only the rest of life could be so simple. Like past Yukai products, the pillow will be launched via a crowdfunding campaign. No word on pricing yet, though CEO Shunsuke Aoki tells me the product will likely cost more than Qoobo, which is currently priced just north of $100.
Another novelty at the show was Lightony, a robotic lamp designed to “fall asleep” with the user.
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