Kokoon Headphones for Sleeping on Kickstarter

Sure, I wear headphones to bed sometimes to watch movies on my iPad...and yes, there are ergonomic issues. I don't sleep with headphones on, or in (in the case of IEMs), but I know people who do. Some sort of trouble is always expressed. Kokoon intends to change all that.

With over a quarter million dollars pledged and over 50 days to go on this fully funded $100,000 ask, Kokoon looks set to go into production on this very unusual feature packed headphone. Unusual characteristics include:

  • Ergonomic shape and flexibility for sleeping.
  • Passive cooling features improving airflow around the ear.
  • EEG sensors to monitor brain wave activity.
  • Smartphone app to record and display sleep quality data.
  • Smartphone apps to play music in such a way that the music doesn't wake you up.
  • Binaural beats app to help induce and control sleep.

Color me interested, I hadn't ever thought about a headphone specifically designed to help you sleep, but I do think it's a damned good idea. Hope it sounds good...Onkyo is in on the design team specifically to help with audio quality. That sounds promising!

Check out their Kickstarter page, or punch the play button on the video below for more info.

The Federalist's picture

One of my sons suffers from chronic insomnia and we opted to try creating an atmosphere that lends itself to sleeping rather than pump him full of sleeping pills like Ambian or Benadryl.

We got him a set of "SleepPhones" that are essentially a headband (Think Bjorn Borg or John McEnroe headband, not Sennheiser) with a couple of relatively flat ear buds sewn into them. They are a not nearly as bulky as these one. There are wireless and wired versions... And we play rain storms and river water, ocean waves etc... through his iPod... It hasn't out and out solved the problem but it has certainly helped him and even if he doesn't fall asleep quickly, he is relaxed and enjoying himself while he waits.

markanini's picture

What if his insomnia is due to RLS, breathing disorders or even heartburn. Would you still insist that your non-pharmaceutical solution is superior?

The Federalist's picture

IF it were caused by heartburn, RLS or the like and there were safe pharmacy based solution (I haven't had to look into those issues or medicines so have to plead ignorance regarding what is out there) but yes I would give him the medicine he needed to treat whatever condition/ symptoms he has. I'm not going to forsake giving my son proper care and medicine regardless of whatever personal ideological beliefs I may or may not have.

If the day comes where the environmental solutions, aren't helping and his quality of life is being impacted, then we'll do what we need to, but we've done the work with his doctors to drill down on what his core issues are and are confident that right now his insomnia is best treated with modifications to his environment.... Not saying SleepPhones or the like cure insomnia... but we've found them helpful in our situation.

markanini's picture

It's nice that there are parents like you that care more about their kids well being than dogmatically blaming it all on flu shots and what not. Wishing you the best of luck for you sons insomnia and a good day.

Seth195208's picture

but not as good an idea as just wearing a low profile iem.

tony's picture

Here we have one of our young daughters traversing her fresh Business career with her trusty iPhone & isolation device/appliance.

I think we're gonna be seeing scads of products like this. It'll make a nice purchase for that young Attorney, Accountant, Professional.

Don't know where they're gonna get their music or maybe they're just taking Political Science classes taught by Henry Kissinger or just listening to Rush Limbaugh getting their "Ditto-head" instructions.

I know the video is Fake thought, No girl her age has an Empty closet or sleeps with all the lights on full, there should be empty bottles, half-filled ashtrays and clothes thrown all over the place.

Nice try KoKoon people, don't quit your job at Taco Bell just yet.

Tony in Springtime Michigan

SuperN0va's picture

I guess you missed the part where the young business woman was in a hotel room, wherein the closet may likely not have clothes hanging in plain sight. Also, it appeared to me that she was waking up from sleep, and probably had the curtains open and was exposed to natural daylight, not all the lights turned on. Assuming she was travelling on business, I see no reason why she would throw her clothes all over the place in a hotel, for some stranger to more easily pick through her things while "cleaning" the room. Just sayin'.

tony's picture

Thanks for writing,

I was just being silly about all this. Certainly it's a professionally done promotional video.

Still, I've traveled with ladies, hit Hotel rooms dead tired, woke to a room in disheveled condition and general disorganization.

Real world has people waking-up not quite realizing what city they're in, blood shot eyes, garments bunched up, hairs tangled, gear spread out over the furniture, etc.

I traveled with my Lady CEO, her and her Staff's rooms look like Mogadishu in the early AM. ( mine probably does too ). Of course, you wouldn't want "that" in a Video.

My traveling people hit the Mini-Bar, sometimes too hard, they have no problem falling asleep (passing-out).

The larger issue is keeping the batteries charged and replacing critical items lost or forgotten.

As far as the Lady in the Video, I've never met her or anyone like her. My Ladies (traveling people) are keeping 20 to 30 balls in the air, timing their day to the minutes, staying on the run from 6AM in San Fransisco till 10PM in Atlanta ( or 7AM in Paris ). Phew.
They are not the well rested "pretty".

Women have a much harder time of traveling than Men; Women live a much higher standard in appearance. I once made an entire business cycle trip with no matching shoes, I had to wear one black and one brown for a week. Women could never get away with that sort of thing, nor could they get by with a bad haircut like I often do. I don't wear any make-up, yet every female is expected to look and smell beautiful with perfect Makeup ( a broken lipstick is a crisis for them ) . I can spray my underwear with Fabreaze, no woman can get away with that trick.

Well, Ok, I accept your points. I just came off a grueling trip and had a chuckle watching the kokoon video, we should probably use it to recruit traveling reps.

Tony in Michigan

SuperN0va's picture

It sounds like you and your lady CEO lead very interesting lives; in comparison, my own would probably bore folks to tears. I can't imagine coming from a grueling trip (business?) as I was working at home for the last 3 - 4 years before recently taking a "have to put on pants every day now" job. To get back on topic, those head phones seem like a clever idea, but I still can't imagine they'd be comfortable to lie on. I would normally use IEMs, and use two pillows side by side, so that my down-facing ear can nestle itself "in the valley" between the two pillows. I am curious about the sleep monitoring feature that would turn down or shut off the sound, however simply playing a single podcast or short music playlist works just fine for me, with no additional financial investment. Cheers.

tony's picture

I love my music, I have thousands of A level ( iTunes ***** 5 Star ). I require Sennheiser HD580 or better. Otherwise I'm not wanting to listen to marginal transducers, I'll accept the little yellow earplugs to control noises or Etymotic IEM for portable/road/travel.

If I have someone traveling with me we'll have millions of things to talk about and share, including recorded music during the lulls.

I can't figure the Sleep part of headphones, I doubt I could wear an appliance. Michael Jackson slept using Propofol, I think I'd rather have a Morphine Drip mounted to my bed stand ( music or no, I wouldn't notice ).

Tony in MIchigan

Smiling Kev's picture

and I'll send a brief review to our IF forum in February or March 2016. My wife and I are each funding a pair at Kickstarter, so I'll include her reactions and opinions, too. We're not expecting anything miraculous, but we both have sleep disorders, we both get some relief from an ambient sound machine (to augment medication and other strategies tracked by our doctors), and neither of us can sleep in our IEMs or any of our normal headphones. So, we are willing to give the KoKoon headphone a comprehensive trial.

We know enough about the physiology of sleep (and its disorders) to be a bit skeptical about the precision and robustness of the EEG-based analytical and interaction routines the Kokoon system will attempt to provide. However, such functions as the ability to recognize the neurological traces of the complex process that winds
us down from "awake" to "asleep" - and progressively lower music volume and transition to white noise as sleep impends - seem well within the reach of a device like the Kookon. We'll be able to render a verdict when the units ship in February 2016.

If they don't work as expected, perhaps they will turn out to at least be decent wireless headphones. If not, then we already know two "lucky" people - totally addicted to gadgets of all types - who will be getting a Kokoon system for their 2016 birthdays and won't really care if it doesn't quite live up to its hype. ;<)

Have a happy and safe Memorial Day Weekend!

dp's picture

I found Bose fixed my problem, when there was a snoring coworker in the same hotel room. It cuts down the snoring to almost 0.

Lunatique's picture

As soon as I had heard about this, I pledged to back the kickstarter.

I suffer from insomnia. I often wake in the middle of the night for hours and can't get back to sleep. I usually read an ebook (with the screen dimmed even darker than lowest setting with the help of a screen dimmer app), and e-reader app set to black background and light text, or read emails, web articles, or listen to music and podcasts.

Whenever I do listen to something, it's always with an IEM, because my wife would be able to hear leaked sound from any other type of headphones--they just don't isolate enough.

The problem with IEM's, is that even the ones designed to fit flush against the ear and I can sleep on my side without being uncomfortable, after a few hours, they do start to hurt the ear canal a bit. I have the Westone 4 and it's a great fit, and I use the triple-flange tip. It's very comfortable, but prolonged listening does expand the ear canal too much and it starts to get sore.

With the Kokoon, I'm hoping it'll both help me sleep better with the app, and also be more comfortable. I'm not sure if there's still going to be some sound leakage like any other typical sealed headphone though, and if so, I won't be able to use it to listen to music/podcasts, since that would wake my wife up.

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