The term “baby monitor” is no longer appropriate. On Wednesday, Owlet unveiled its new Owlets Smart Sock Plus, which fits youngsters up to age five (and 55 pounds). The first Owlet Sock has launched in 2015 and monitors heart rate, blood oxygen level, and sleep patterns in infants up to 18 months of age (or about 30 pounds). According to the firm, the most popular request from consumers is to prolong the product’s use into early infancy.
This smart infant breathing monitor has come a long way since CNET first reported it in 2013. “Sock” back then was more of a boot, and the firm was still in its early stages of crowdsourcing. As of today, the Owlet Sock is a lightweight. Basic design that has used to monitor the vitals of over 1 million newborns.
While the new Smart Sock Plus has the same appearance and feel as the Smart Sock 3, the bigger sizes make it more comfortable. It has also modified its algorithms to take older youngsters into consideration.
Evolution in Baby Technology
There is a danger that this type of baby technology may appear to be a solution in search of a problem for parents. As a result, the market for smart baby monitors has exploded in the years since Owlet’s launch. With new products like Nanit Pro, Cubo AI and Miku Smart Baby Monitors. These can measure and track vitals like oxygen levels in the baby’s lungs and temperature as well as sleep quality. All of this information is presented in visually appealing charts and graphs that data-hungry millennials find appealing.
In the past, I’ve recorded my son’s milk consumption, diaper changes, and naps for a whole year for no apparent reason. The Owlet app delivers similar bio-intelligence to my Fitbit Charge 4. Which has used to track my own sleep, physical activity, and heart rate.
Discovering trends and patterns that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to is a great thing to do. My son’s pulse rate calms down as I sing him to sleep with the Owlets latest sock. When I hear your voice, my BPM settles down. Aww.
When he was younger, I would wake up in the middle of the night, convinced that he had stopped breathing.
To monitor your child’s health as they get older, Owlets has created the Smart Sock Plus. There is just enough ambiguity in that promise to make it seem enticing without making any claims regarding value. A parent’s sleep habits or heart rate data probably won’t tell them anything about their child’s health.
Keeping track of your child’s sleep isn’t much more than a curiosity in the absence of any health issues.
Owlets Smart Sock Reduce the risk of SIDS
A medical gadget, Owlet’s Smart Sock does not promise to prevent SIDS (in fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics actually advises against using breathing monitors like the Owlet to reduce the risk of SIDS).
I see the Owlet Smart Sock for infants as a security alarm for a house without doors. However, if your kid is able to roll over on their own by the time the doors (and locks) are placed, you may still want to add an alarm.
The peace of mind during the newborn phase is worth it. If your budget allows it, and if you’re not able to sleep despite following safe sleep practises to the letter, like I am. “Sleep while the baby sleeps” would be easier with the Owlet or similar breathing monitor.
There are three sizes of Owlet Smart Sock Plus socks and a base station that can be used to charge the socks wirelessly for $349. Pricey, especially when you consider that the video monitor is an add-on ($159 if purchased individually, or $459 if purchased with the Smart Sock Plus). By purchasing a $69 Smart Sock Plus extension pack, current Smart Sock 3 users can upgrade to Smart Sock Plus.
The price of the Smart Sock has nearly doubled since 2016 due to the fact that it may now be worn by children as young as five years old. Given how much my need for “peace of mind” diminished after the first year. It’s impossible to determine whether the increased price is justified by the expanded age and weight range.