Glo Pillow – Waking Up With the Sunrise

Eoin McNally and Ian Walton, two industrial designers based in Ireland, teamed up to create the Glo Pillow. In this project, they invented a pleasant alternative to the conventional alarm clock. Alarm clocks can wake us abruptly at any stage of our sleep cycle, resulting in a slow and difficult awakening process. The Glo Pillow uses light, and not sound, in order to wake sleepers, by using built-in LEDs. The LEDs simulate a natural sunrise over a period of forty minutes, waking the sleeper in a gentle, gradual way. McNally and Walton’s design won the Royal Society of Art Design Directions (RSA) Award in 2006.

The conventional alarm clock frequently disturbs us when we are in deep sleep, resulting in an abrupt awakening that leaves the body tired and stressed. The solution offered by the Glo Pillow is a gradual awakening that begins with a soft glow, forty minutes before the pre-set alarm time. The soft glow gradually intensifies until it reaches 250 lux.

The pillow is wireless, as it is charged by induction via a pad that is placed underneath it. The unique SoftSwitch interface allows the user to control the different functions through six switches in the fabric interface, which is integrated into the pillow. The LED fabric substrate’s function is not only to wake the sleeping person using light, but also to display the time on the pillow’s surface.

The pillow consists of five layers; the first, exterior layer envelopes the pillow with 100% cotton fabric, the second is a layer of netting, the third layer is made of foam batting, the fourth layer is a LED woven substrate that covers the fifth and final layer, a 5lb density visco-elastic memory foam.

TFOT has covered Waterdrop – an innovative clock and personal weather station. Besides some of the usual features, such as a weather forecast and temperature and humidity readings, which are displayed on an illuminated LCD screen, the Waterdrop is equipped with a hands-free infrared sensor.

More information about the Glo Pillow can be found here.

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