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Sleep Number i8 mattress review: Trial and error eventually leads to better sleep

John Brandon | April 16, 2015
After some trial and error, this mattress will help you get more high-quality sleep.

The data speaks volumes. If you're going to spend almost $3,000 on a bed, it had better perform. One reason I'm a fan of this tech is that, after consistently scoring above 80, I noticed how I worked faster during the day and those around me said I wasn't as cranky. I felt more energized and even started biking more often during the day.

The whole process is different from the Kingsdown Sleep Smart Intuitive mattress, which does all of these adjustments for you but for three times the price. The Sleep Number i8 is a barebones "tech" mattress that connects to your existing Wi-Fi network, so you can monitor your sleep from anywhere--not just on your home network.

The Kingsdown mattress I tested offered more data about how often I tossed around each night, let me adjust the base (raising the head or foot), and it even had a vibration/massage mode. Sleep Number also offers higher-end beds with adjustable bases and vibration options, but the basic tech features are the same.

The Sleep Number i8 remote control is also bare bones. You can adjust the firmness of the left and right sides independently, and you can see your sleep score, but that's about it. An added feature that let me see my history for the week would have been handy; once I found the ideal setting, I mostly forgot all about the remote.

I'm a big fan of both high-tech beds, but I wouldn't recommend buying either the Sleep Number i8 or the more-expensive Kingsdown if you have no trouble sleeping on a more conventional mattress. No mattress will last forever, so bear in mind that replacing it with an equivalent model will set you back another three--or 10-plus--grand in eight to 10 years.

On the other hand, it's remarkably helpful to make adjustments to your mattress as your sleep patterns change, so you can maintain the quality of your sleep. The Sleep Number i8 is an exceptional product that helped me enjoy my waking hours even more.


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