Pod Pro by Eight Sleep Review

Last Updated: May 21, 2022

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The Pod Pro by Eight Sleep is a temperature-controlled sleep system that consists of a five-layer memory foam mattress, an “Active Grid” topper and a central command center called “The Hub.”

The purpose of the water-based heating and cooling technology built into the Pod Pro is to help your body achieve and maintain an ideal temperature while you’re sleeping, thus increasing your sleep time and improving the quality of your sleep (more deep and REM sleep). This makes it more likely that you’ll wake up feeling fully rested and refreshed.

While the device can provide either a warmer or cooler sleeping experience, this review will primarily focus on the cooling aspect, which more closely aligns with improved sleep outcomes.

Additionally, the Pod Pro by Eight Sleep has advanced sleep tracking technology built into the mattress cover, which the company calls the Active Grid. This technology layer can measure your heart rate, heart rate variability and other sleep-related biometrics.

I had the chance to sleep on the Pod Pro over the past few weeks, and I’m excited to share my findings with you in this review.

Pod Pro by Eight Sleep

Michael Kummer

The Eight Sleep System
Ability to Control Bed Temperature
Sleep tracking


For us (my wife and I), Eight Sleep is the most comfortable mattress we’ve ever slept on, and I’m still excited every night when I go to bed and feel the cool surface of the mattress on my skin.


Continue reading to get answers to the following questions and more:

  • Why is staying cool while sleeping important?
  • What is the technology in Pod Pro?
  • How accurate is the Pod Pro’s sleep tracking, compared to other sleep trackers?
  • What sleep issues can the Pod Pro help with?

I’ll also explain how my sleep has changed since I started using the Pod Pro.


  • Comfortable memory foam mattress.
  • Perfect bed temperature control with dual-zone support.
  • Cools down to as low as 55 Fahrenheit.
  • Smart alarm that uses vibration and temperature.
  • Reasonably priced (compared to regular premium mattresses).
  • Integration with Apple Health, Oura, Peloton and more.
  • Data-driven sleep and health coaching (via Span Health acquisition).


  • Sleep tracking is not always 100% accurate.
  • Adds more electronics to your bedroom.

The Importance of Sleep (Quality)

As I’ve said numerous times on this blog, sleep is the very foundation of your well-being. If you don’t sleep well, nothing else matters.

That’s why I’m protective of my sleep and follow a strict sleep routine.

A lot happens inside your body and brain while you sleep, and if you disrupt that delicate cycle you’ll suffer consequences, like the inability to focus, reduced mental and physical performance, increased risk of developing a metabolic disease and irritability, among others.

While sleeping well should come naturally (we don’t have to learn it), research suggests that many of us don’t get enough quality sleep. For example, I recently discovered a statistic from the CDC that claims that up to 44% of adults in the United States get fewer than seven hours of sleep per night

Additionally, about 70 million Americans suffer from sleep disorders, including insomnia, sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome or narcolepsy.

If you’re surprised by these numbers, just ask your friends and family how much sleep they get every night, and how rested they feel when they wake up. I bet most don’t get enough sleep or feel energetic in the morning.

Sufficient (quality) sleep is important for our well-being. So make sure that your bedroom is set up in a way that is conducive to sleeping well.

The Role of Temperature in Sleep Quality

How to Improve Your SLEEP (by Controlling Your Body Temperature)
You can learn more about the relationship between temperature and sleep in the video above.

Two important factors that directly influence sleep quality are the temperature in your bedroom and your body’s ability to regulate its own temperature.

There are several reasons for that, including:

  • Your body temperature naturally declines throughout the night based on your circadian rhythm.
  • Falling asleep requires your core temperature to decline by about 2 degrees.
  • Feeling too hot, and the subsequent need to remove covers, disrupts your sleep.

Every cell in your body follows what’s known as a circadian rhythm. Think of it as a biological clock that influences the release of certain hormones, such as melatonin in the evening and cortisol in the morning. 

As part of that circadian rhythm, your body starts to slowly cool down as you approach bedtime, and its temperature continues to decline until a few hours before waking up. In order to support that natural cooling-off period, it’s best to keep your bedroom temperature set somewhere between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit.

Of course, if you only have one central HVAC unit (like we do), that means cooling down the entire house. Unfortunately, that leads to a lot of wasted energy.

Also, to fall asleep, your body’s core temperature has to drop by about 2 degrees. That’s one of the reasons why taking a hot shower before going to bed helps with falling asleep. As counter-intuitive as it might sound, hot water dilates the blood vessels in your extremities, increasing blood flow and thus helping your core to cool down more efficiently. 

What doesn’t help is having hot air trapped between the mattress and your covers — a situation that most of us can relate to.

I used to sleep hot, especially during the warmer months of the season, and often uncovered myself during the first half of the night. 

Of course, as my body temperature (and the temperature in the house) kept falling during the second half of the night, I would get cold and cover myself up again. That back and forth is obviously not conducive to a good night’s rest.

How I Like to Sleep

How cavemen sleep
Humans sleep best in a dark and cool environment.

I approach sleep similarly to how I approach nutrition — by trying to mimic the behavior of our Paleolithic ancestors. 

Our bodies are genetically conditioned to sleep in darkness, on a cold surface (usually the padded floor of a cave), and covered by (heavy) animal skins and fur. 

My idea of mimicking this environment is to cool down the room, remove as many artificial light sources as possible, and use a weighted blanket in addition to traditional bed covers. 

As a result, the “thin sheet” approach doesn’t really fit into that strategy, because it doesn’t reflect how humans have slept throughout evolution.

But regardless of whether you like to sleep with a thin or thick blanket, your body temperature changes naturally throughout the night. And the chances are that you’ll be too cold or too hot at some point.

Why We Chose Eight Sleep

Why we chose Eight Sleep
Both my wife and I are super happy with the Pod Pro.

While my wife and I were able to figure out how to make our room dark and cold, we’ve been struggling with controlling the temperature between the sheets and the mattress. As a result, we would often overheat in the middle of the night.

I sometimes exacerbated the situation by having a high-fat dinner (at the end of a 24-hour fast). The energy my body would expend digesting a high-caloric meal also increased my body temperature, further preventing me from falling asleep or getting into the restorative stages of sleep.

As a result, I was looking for solutions that would help me to better regulate my body temperature. At first, I was looking into so-called “bed fans” that would blow air under the sheets, but I wasn’t convinced they were the most practicable solution.

Then I stumbled across an ad for Eight Sleep on Instagram and got excited about the technology. So I reached out to Eight Sleep and they graciously agreed to send me their Pod Pro for testing.

Eight Sleep Pod Pro Review

The Eight Sleep System
The complete Eight Sleep system.

Based on my research, Eight Sleep offers the most advanced “cooling mattress” and sleep technology on the market. While this review covers the entire Pod — which consists of the memory foam mattress, the smart cover (Active Grid) and the Hub — you should know that you can retrofit an existing mattress with an Active Grid. Eight Sleep calls this the “Pod Pro Cover*.”

If you do, most of the information in this review still applies, with the exception of anything that relates directly to the polyfoam mattress.

The reason why we got the complete Pod was that our old mattress was already 10 years old and ready for replacement.

Unboxing and Smart Bed Setup

Setting up the Pod Pro was relatively straightforward and took only a few minutes.

Eight Sleep Unboxing - YouTube
Click on the image above to watch my unboxing video!

What’s worth pointing out is that the Pod Pro ships as two separate packages that likely won’t arrive on the same day. We received a box with the memory foam mattress first, and the Active Grid and Hub arrived a few days later.

Once you’ve received the complete shipment, you should unbox the mattress first by carefully cutting away the plastic wrapping. Just make sure you don’t cut into the mattress!

Don’t be discouraged if the mattress looks thinner than you had anticipated. The plastic wrapping compresses the memory foam, and it takes a few minutes for the mattress to expand after the plastic has come off.

The next step includes zipping-on the mattress cover (the Active Grid) and routing the cable along the headboard of your bed to where you intend to position the Hub. 

Once that’s done, you can find a good spot for the Eight Sleep Hub and plug in the water connections, the USB cable and the power cord. Just make sure that the Hub isn’t too close to any furniture, because it needs to be able to circulate air via the built-in fan.

Last but not least, you can use the Eight Sleep mobile app (available for iOS and Android) to hook up the Hub to your Wi-Fi network and “prime” the system.

“Priming” means flushing out the air from the water tubes and filling them with water.

The app will guide you through all of the steps, but make sure you use filtered or distilled water, and make sure you add two tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide every time you fill the water tank (to help prevent mold or other microorganisms from growing inside the tubes). 

Eight Sleep Pod Mattress

Eight Sleep - Foam Mattress Layers copy
The layers of the Eight Sleep Mattress and Active Grid.

I think it’s fair to say that everybody wants to sleep comfortably. Unfortunately, the definition of “comfortable,” and how that translates into the firmness of a mattress, differs from person to person.

Both my wife and I prefer softer mattresses, because we’ve found that harder mattresses cause pressure points. We noticed that the last time we went to visit my family in Austria and stayed with my mom and her husband. The bed we slept in had super-firm mattresses that made us feel like we were sleeping on the floor. 

On the other hand, I don’t like a mattress that doesn’t provide enough support to keep my spine and other body parts properly aligned.

Eight Sleep claims that their 12-inch hybrid mattress is made with five comfort layers of CertiPUR-US-certified foam and has an ideal “medium” firmness for providing contouring support and decent edge support.

The CertiPUR-US certification ensures that the foam was manufactured without the use of ozone-depleting chlorofluorocarbons, heavy metals, formaldehyde and phthalates, and that it has low VOC emissions. In other words, the mattress was produced in an environmentally-friendly manner and off-gassing is greatly reduced.

After having slept on Eight Sleep for a few weeks, my wife and I have concluded that our new mattress is neither too firm nor too soft; it’s just comfortable and provides the proper amount of support based on our preferences. 

In fact, Eight Sleep is the best mattress I’ve ever slept and I appreciate that it’s more breathable than some of the all-foam mattresses I’ve had in the past.

Temperature Control

Eight Sleep - Smart Temp Setup
Getting started with creating your own temperature profile.

The ability to control the temperature of the mattress surface was the feature that most attracted me to Eight Sleep.

To facilitate that temperature control, the Active Grid has soft water tubes sewn into the fabric, enabling the Hub to circulate water through those tubes at the desired temperature.

It’s worth noting that you can control the temperature of either side of the mattress individually. That’s great, because my wife likes to sleep a tad warmer than I do. 

As far as the temperature range is concerned, you can set it to anywhere between “minus 10” to “plus 10” using the Eight Sleep app. That +/-10 scale represents an actual temperature range of 55 to 110 Fahrenheit (13 to 43 Celsius). 

For the first night, I set the temperature to a relatively low setting (-8) and it felt like I was sleeping on a frozen lake. The next evening, I increased the temperature to a more reasonable setting (-2), and I’ve kept it that way ever since. 

As I mentioned at the beginning of this review, your body temperature naturally changes over the course of the night. Additionally, your temperature perception can vary based on the ambient temperature (in your room or even outside).

That’s why Eight Sleep includes sensors in the Active Grid that measure the ambient temperature. These sensors enable the Pod to learn from your environment and make smarter temperature recommendations. Additionally, you can set different temperature settings for the various stages of your sleep, including:

  • Bedtime
  • Initial sleep stage
  • Final sleep stage
  • Wake up

In practice, the Pod starts cooling down (or heating up) your mattress about an hour before your set bedtime. As you fall asleep (i.e., during the initial sleep stage), the Pod adjusts the temperature to support slow-wave sleep (also known as deep sleep) — an important stage of sleep that occurs in longer periods during the first half of the night.

As your body starts naturally cooling down during the second half of the night (the time when most REM sleep occurs), the Pod can slightly increase the temperature of the mattress surface before cooling down the mattress again to encourage you to get out of bed once you’ve woken up.

Of course, you can control all four temperature settings individually based on your preferences.

Overall, I think the incredibly wide temperature range offered by the Pod Pro should be able to accommodate most users. For those extra “hot” sleepers, Eight Sleep offers the Pod Pro Max, which includes a special heat dissipating fabric the company calls MaxChill.

In other words, if you tend to sweat a lot while sleeping and suspect that a mattress surface temperature of 55 Fahrenheit might not be cold enough (the lowest the Pod Pro can go), you might want to consider getting the Pod Pro Max instead. The special fabric I mentioned above improves airflow and reduces the chances of hot air getting trapped around your body.

Autopilot (8+ Pro)

If you’re subscribed to the optional 8+ Pro membership ($19 per month), you get access to Eight Sleep’s autopilot feature, which recommends temperature changes based on various factors.

These factors include:

  • Personal sleep history with the Pod.
  • Past temperature preferences.
  • Historical and real-time bedroom temperature.
  • Historical and real-time local weather.
  • User feedback and input over time.

For example, every so often the Eight Sleep app asks me how the temperature settings felt the night before (i.e., if I was too hot or too cold during the various stages of sleep). Based on that feedback, along with the other factors mentioned above, the Autopilot can dynamically adjust my bed temperature setting to further improve my sleep.

Sleep Tracking

Eight Sleep - More Deep Sleep with Lower Temperatures
The “extremely cold” setting led to more deep sleep than usual.

Sleep tracking is one of my passions, so I was excited to find out how the non-wearable technology of Eight Sleep would compare to my WHOOP strap (which is a wearable device).

Out of the box, Eight Sleep can track the following metrics:

  • Heart rate variability (HRV)
  • Out-of-bed events
  • Respiratory rate
  • Sleeping heart rate
  • Stages of sleep (awake, light, deep, REM)
  • Time to fall asleep
  • Time to leave bed
  • Time spent in bed
  • Toss and turns
  • Wake up consistency

From a technological perspective, Eight Sleep relies on pressure sensors in the Active Grid to detect body movement (or lack thereof), to count how often your heart beats (heart rate), and to measure the variability between the timing of your heartbeats (HRV). 

As you can imagine, the movement pattern of a beating heart is different from that of your chest as it moves up and down while you breathe. The Active Grid’s pressure sensors can pick up on those differences to figure out how often you breathe per minute (i.e., your respiratory rate), how often your heart beats, and whether you’re tossing and turning. 

Specifically, your movement patterns and your heart rate can help Eight Sleep figure out both whether you’re actually sleeping and, if so, what stage of sleep you’re in.

If you’ve read my article about sleep trackers, you might remember that a lack of movement and a low heart rate aren’t necessarily reliable indicators of sleep. 

While comparing WHOOP with Biostrap, a wrist-worn sleep tracker, the device occasionally thought that I was sleeping while I was actually watching TV on the couch. That’s because I didn’t move for an extended period and my heart rate was very low.

The advantage that Eight Sleep has over other wearables is that it won’t start sleep tracking until you’re actually in bed. Eight Sleep’s assumption is that you go to bed to sleep (or to have sex), but not to watch TV or read a book for extended periods.

That assumption might not match your lifestyle. If so, the bed might not always accurately detect if you’re sleeping or trying to fall asleep. We’ll talk about those “assumptions” in more detail further down. 

As far as sleep tracking is concerned, you should know that Eight Sleep does a fairly good job of figuring out how much time I spend in deep and REM sleep when compared to the data from my WHOOP strap*.

In other words, both platforms confirm that I spend approximately 40% of my sleep in those restorative phases. That’s an ideal amount for a healthy adult.

However, the Pod Pro might not always be able to accurately differentiate between light sleep and being awake, which could lead to a lower sleep score in the mobile app (see below for more on that).

HRV and Respiratory Rate Tracking

Eight Sleep - HRV and HR
A drop in HRV can be a warning sign of an infection.

In addition to the quality of my sleep, I pay very close attention to changes in my HRV and respiratory rate. 

As I mentioned in my WHOOP review, the difference in timing between heartbeats is an indirect indication of how well the nervous system is functioning. If you’re healthy and recovered, there should be a lot of competition between the sympathetic and parasympathetic branches of your nervous system, leading to a high HRV.

If you’re getting sick, or if your body is struggling to recover from stress or strain, your HRV is naturally low — a sign that the sympathetic branch of your nervous system is in overdrive. 

The problem with HRV is that it’s highly volatile. That’s why it only makes sense to measure HRV during sleep to minimize any influencing factors.

Keeping tabs on your HRV trends can help you determine how recovered your body is, and whether or not you might be getting sick. That’s why I look at my HRV data first thing in the morning to get an assessment of how my body is doing. Most of the time it matches how I feel, although that’s not always the case.

While comparing the HRV data from Eight Sleep and WHOOP, I noticed significant discrepancies as far as the absolute numbers are concerned. 

The reason for those discrepancies is that Eight Sleep measures HRV during different times of sleep than WHOOP does. The good news with HRV is that absolute numbers aren’t nearly as significant as relative changes compared to your baseline (trends).

The good news is that both Eight Sleep and WHOOP have shown similar trend lines, which means that I can rely on either one to assess how my body is doing.

The second factor that can be incredibly helpful in forecasting illness is respiratory rate. That’s because your rate of breathing while asleep is relatively consistent. If that rate suddenly increases, it’s usually a sign of a respiratory problem like sleep apnea or even a viral infection. 

Based on Eight Sleep’s data, my respiratory rate is about 11 breaths per minute and usually ranges from 11.1 to 12.0. WHOOP shows slightly higher numbers (14 to 15 BPM) but the trendlines generated by both platforms look very similar.

Smart Alarm (GentleRise)

Eight Sleep - GentleRise Smart Alarm
Customization options for Eight Sleep’s smart alarm.

GentleRise is Eight Sleep’s proprietary smart alarm. It uses a combination of gentle vibrations and a gradual change of temperature to wake you up in the morning. 

Practically, that means you can set an alarm using the Eight Sleep app and the chest area of the mattress will start vibrating at that time. Additionally, the mattress will gradually heat up or cool down (based on your preferences) as the wakeup time approaches. Of course, you can enable and use both features individually. 

While GentleRise works very well, there is room for improvement. For example, Eight Sleep claims that the vibrations won’t disturb your partner, but at the medium strength setting they do bother my wife — especially if I get up before the alarm and then forget to turn it off. 

That happens a lot because I usually don’t look at my phone in the early morning, a period when I try to focus on writing (for this blog).

Update: While writing this review, Eight Sleep updated its app and now you can dismiss the alarm even before it goes off.

Since writing this review, I’ve reduced the intensity of the vibrating alarm from “5” to “3” and, as a result, my wife has stopped noticing it. 

Another way that Eight Sleep could improve its smart alarm is by taking sleep data into account. For example, if I have my alarm set to 5:30 a.m., but happen to be in the middle of REM sleep at that time, being woken up could leave me feeling groggy for a few hours. 

I have a fairly consistent bedtime. As a result, I’m usually in light sleep around the time I want to get up. But sometimes, I might go to bed or fall asleep later than usual. That could cause a shift in my sleep cycle that I would like Eight Sleep’s smart alarm to take into account by waking me up a few minutes sooner or later (while I’m in light sleep).

Also, for those rare occasions where I’ve racked up some sleep debt (perhaps because I traveled internationally and struggled with jet lag for a few days), I would love it if there was an option that would wake me up after I slept for a certain amount of time (i.e., 8 hours), instead of at a set time. I know that a consistent wake time is important for my circadian rhythm, but I don’t think it justifies carrying sleep debt.

Overall, I maintain relatively consistent sleep and wake times, so I probably won’t use the smart alarm much except on days where I have an early flight or an appointment I can’t be late for. In most other cases, I’ll allow my body to get as much rest as it needs without worrying too much about the exact time I roll out of bed. 

Mobile App

The Eight Sleep mobile app is feature-rich yet intuitive to use. From the initial setup process to checking out my previous night’s sleep performance in the morning, all the settings and data are easy to find and manipulate.

The home screen shows a prominent on/off button that allows you to quickly turn the mattress’ cooling/heating system on or off. Right below, you can fine-tune the temperature settings for the various stages of sleep. 

Additionally, you can change your desired bed and wake-up times and customize the smart alarm settings.

Sleep Fitness Score

Eight Sleep - Sleep Fitness Scores - Side by Side
Eight Sleep calculates your personal sleep fitness score every morning.

The second screen of the Eight Sleep app is reserved for a detailed sleep analysis, including your daily sleep fitness score. Much like the Biostrap app, Eight Sleep decided to use a color palette that’s not 100% intuitive, in my opinion. 

For example, a perfect sleep fitness score of 100 is indicated by a turquoise ring, while anything less than 100 but higher than 90 is represented by a partial yellow ring. Any score below 90 is shown in red.

I assume that most people would consider a score of 80 or higher as “pretty good,” and might be upset to see a red ring around a sleep score of 89. In fact, that was one of the first complaints I got from my wife when she ended up with a score in the 80s (because she didn’t get out of bed fast enough in the morning).

My recommendation to the design team is to be more deliberate with the color coding, using the traffic light system of green/yellow/red and wider ranges to prevent users from getting frustrated by “low” scores.

Sleep Consistency

Right below the sleep fitness score, you can find a relatively detailed sleep analysis that includes the following metrics:

  1. Time slept
  2. Wake up consistency
  3. Time to fall asleep
  4. Time to leave bed
  5. Sleep stage timeline
  6. Toss and turns
  7. Sleeping heart rate
  8. Bed surface temperature

The first four metrics are meant to help you get insights on and improve your sleep consistency. What I like about this section of the app is that it offers a visual indication of whether your sleep consistency is within the ideal range. 

For example, to best support your circadian rhythm, you should go to bed and wake up within the same 30-minute window every day

If any of the tracked metrics fall outside of the “ideal” range, you get a penalty on your sleep fitness score.

I really like that idea because it can help you improve your sleep consistency. However, as I mentioned above, the rating system might not work perfectly for everybody.

My wife likes to read before closing her eyes at night, and also spends a few minutes catching up on emails and social media in the morning. So her total time in bed is much longer than the time she’s asleep. 

Eight Sleep sometimes interprets her lack of movement while reading as an indication that she’s trying to fall asleep. When that happens, she gets a penalty because the app thinks it took her more than 30 minutes to fall asleep. And the next morning she gets another penalty for not getting out of bed quickly enough.

I appreciate how that can be frustrating, but I also understand where Eight Sleep is coming from. 

For example, the idea of leaving bed right after waking up is to expose yourself to (sun)light. That sends a message to your brain and your circadian rhythm that it’s time to crank up the engine. 

At the same time, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with spending half an hour reading a book (as far as sleep performance is concerned) before calling it a night.

The good news is that you can always manually edit your sleep data and adjust all the captured data to avoid seeing a lower sleep score.

Sleep Stage Analysis

Eight Sleep - Sleep Stage Analysis
Eight Sleep can track the stages of sleep.

In addition to tracking your sleep consistency, Eight Sleep also offers a detailed sleep stage analysis that shows you how much time you’ve spent in each of the four sleep stages (awake, light, deep and REM). 

One of the most important aspects of sleep quality is the time you spend in the restorative phases of sleep (deep and REM sleep). What I like about the Eight Sleep app is that it shows you the time you spent in the various stages as percentages. So you can see at a glance if you spent about 40% of your total sleep in those restorative phases.

If I was the person at Eight Sleep responsible for the user interface design, I’d probably add the ability to toggle between % and absolute numbers (maybe by tapping the screen), as well as some sort of timeline scrubbing feature. That would make it easier to see exactly what time I entered deep sleep or got up to pee (for example).

Vital Signs

Eight Sleep - HRV (Details)
My HRV trendline.

The third screen shows a number of important biometrics, including nocturnal HRV, sleeping heart rate and sleeping respiratory rate.

These three metrics, and their relative changes over time compared to your baseline, are vital to understanding how your nervous and respiratory systems are doing. 

What I like about the app is that it not only shows you the HRV recording from the previous night, but also gives you an indication of what your typical range is (and whether or not last night’s reading is out of range).

I’d like to see the same range information for the sleeping heart rate and respiratory rate, as major discrepancies within these metrics from their respective baselines can indicate a respiratory or other infection, including the common cold or the flu.

Medidate, Breath, Listen, Move

Eight Sleep - Meditate, Breathe, Listen

The last section of the app consists of a library of audio-visuals and guides that can help you meditate, listen to white noise and sounds from nature, perform deep breathing exercises and more.

I haven’t fully explored that section yet but I have it on my to-do list.


Eight Sleep’s mobile app integrates with multiple third-party platforms to provide “tangible insights into your health and recovery.”

The current integrations include the following:

  • Apple Health
  • Fitbit
  • Garmin
  • Google Fit
  • Oura
  • Peloton
  • Polar Flow
  • Training Peaks
  • Zwift

Leveraging these integrations means that Eight Sleep can correlate activity — such as rides on your Peloton bike, Oura scores or runs tracked via Garmin — with changes in your sleep quality.

As a result, the Eight Sleep app can tell you if your HRV goes up on days that you run or ride your bike. That information enables you to make decisions during the day that will benefit your sleep and recovery.

In a way, it’s similar to one of my favorite features of the WHOOP Strap, the WHOOP Journal.

Update: On March 30, 2022, Eight Sleep announced the acquisition of Span Health, a platform/service I’ve used in the past that provides data-driven health and sleep coaching.

Using Span Health enables you to work directly with a medical doctor and nutritionist to experiment with supplements and lifestyle choices and see how they impact your sleep and recovery. Think of it as the WHOOP Journal, but with human involvement.

I’m super excited to see how Eight Sleep will incorporate Span Health to provide even better and more actionable insights into how lifestyle choices impact sleep quality. Eight Sleep’s new coaching services aren’t yet available, but you can join a waitlist* and get notified when they officially launch.

Behavior Tags

Eight Sleep Tags and integrations
Tags enable Eight Sleep to correlate behaviors with changes in sleep quality.

Similar to the integrations above, Eight Sleep also introduced “behavior” tags (similar, again, to the WHOOP Journal), which allow the app to correlate certain behaviors and lifestyle choices with changes in sleep quality.

While the number of available tags is still somewhat limited, and the correlations aren’t quite as in-depth as the ones WHOOP offers, it’s still valuable to see how certain behaviors (like alcohol consumption) impact the quality of your sleep and recovery.

What’s cool is that Eight Sleep can automatically apply certain tags based on activities imported from the connected sources. For example, if you track a HIIT workout using your Apple Watch, Eight Sleep will automatically apply the HIIT tag.


Eight Sleep offers its smart mattress in several different configurations and sizes. The prices in the table below reflect list prices and do not include any sales or discounts.

FullQueenKingCalifornia King
The Pod$2,295$2,595$2,995$2,995
The Pod Pro$2,795$3,095$3,495$3,495
The Pod Pro Max$3,295$3,595$4,095$4,095

As a reminder, the Pod doesn’t include a mattress but is meant for retrofitting any 11-inch mattress, and the Pod Pro Max is meant for extra hot sleepers. We got the Pod Pro in king size, as indicated in bold above.

As you can see, the Eight Sleep system costs more than some regular mattresses but less than other high-end options from companies such as Sleep Number and Tempur-Pedic — neither of which have the same water-based cooling technology that Eight Sleep offers.

Try Eight Sleep*

Note that each purchase of an Eight Sleep system comes with a complementary 8+ membership that includes most of the features I mentioned above. Additionally, you can subscribe to the 8+ Pro membership to unlock additional features (see the FAQ section below).

Sleep Trial

If you’d like to give Eight Sleep a try (note that you have 100 nights to try the system and send it back if you don’t like it), make sure to use the link above and enter code KUMMER at checkout — it’ll save you $150 off the purchase price.

How Eight Sleep Has Changed How We Sleep

Eight Sleep - Sleep Fitness Score (Weekly)
I’ve been sleeping well with Eight Sleep!

In a nutshell, we no longer get too hot or too cold while sleeping. That has reduced the number of disturbances caused by covering or uncovering ourselves during the night.

Both my wife and I sleep subjectively better, and I have more nights where I spend at least 40% of my sleep in restorative phases.

It’s not that we slept incredibly poorly before switching to Eight Sleep; we’ve always kept a relatively strict sleep routine that has produced positive sleep results. But Eight Sleep has helped us to get to the next level of sleep quality.

If you’re someone who has been struggling with getting enough quality sleep, or if you suffer from insomnia or high temperatures in your bedroom, I strongly believe that Eight Sleep can make a huge impact for you.

How Does the Pod Pro Compare to Similar Solutions?

Click the image above to watch my YouTube video comparison of Eight Sleep and Chilisleep.

With regard to Cube Sleep, it’s important to remember that bed fans that blow air under your sheets might make you feel a bit cooler, but they don’t actually change the temperature of the mattress surface. Eight Sleep can reduce the temperature of the mattress surface to 55 degrees Fahrenheit and keep it there, without making any disturbing noise.

Frequently Asked Questions

I’d like to lie on this mattress before placing an order. Where can I do that?

Unfortunately, you can’t, because Sleep Eight doesn’t have any brick and mortar stores. 

However, Eight Sleep offers a 100-night trial period. If you don’t like it, you can send it back. And since Eight Sleep will cover the return shipping fees, you have literally zero risk.

Can I set the temperature of each side of the bed individually?

Yes, you absolutely can have different settings for each side of the bed.

Is there a noticeable motion transfer between each side of the bed

Overall, the high-density foam bed absorbs most body movement. I asked my wife the other day and she said that as long as I don’t let my body (literally) fall into bed, she doesn’t feel me moving.

Can I control the bed with Amazon Alexa?

Yes, you can integrate Eight Sleep into your smart home via a service called If This Than That (IFTTT). Through IFTTT, you can integrate your Eight Sleep system with Amazon Alexa, Philips Hue lights and other smart home devices.

Is the Pod good for back sleepers, side sleepers and stomach sleepers?

Yes, the five layers of the Pod mattress instantly respond to body impressions and provide pressure relief, regardless of your sleep patterns or sleep position. I usually sleep on my back but my wife sometimes lies on her side or stomach. Neither of us have had any issues as far as support or comfort are concerned. 

What warranty does Eight Sleep provide?

The polyfoam part of the smart bed is covered by a 10-year warranty. The technology layer is covered by a two-year limited warranty. For more information, check out Eight Sleep’s warranty page.

Have you tested any of the Eight Sleep accessories, such as the Carbon Air Pillow, the Air Light Comforter or the Gravity Blanket?

Yes, I also have the Carbon Air Pillow from Eight Sleep and love it. You can check out my review here.

Can I purchase the Pod Pro without the mattress?

Yes, you can purchase the Active Grid separately! Eight Sleep calls this product the Pod Pro Cover* and it zips on to any 10″ to 16″ tall mattress.

Does the Pod Pro emit electromagnetic fields or radiation (EMF/EMR)?

The Pod Pro’s cover doesn’t emit EMFs — only the Pod (the device that sits next to the bed) emits EMFs. However, it’s an extremely low amount of EMFs and is less than a box-fan that plugs into a wall.

I positioned our Pod several feet away from the bed, so I’m not concerned about radiation. You can learn more about my take on EMFs and how I reduce my exposure in this article.

What’s the 8+ Pro Membership?

8+ Pro is an optional subscription membership that adds a suite of digital sleep improvement tools to the Pod experience. Specifically, the 8+ Pro subscription adds the following features: temperature autopilot, digital coaching, data insights, sleep content and discount on accessories and upgrades.

Conclusion: Eight Sleep Mattress Review

Video Review: Pod Pro by Eight Sleep
Click on the image above to see my full video review of the Pod Pro by Eight Sleep.

It’s been a few weeks since we got the Pod Pro and I have yet to experience a bad night’s sleep. Both my wife and I love the temperature regulation feature of the Pod and how comfortable the medium-firm mattress feels. 

Compared to our old mattress, which we bought 10 years ago at Ikea, our new high-tech sleep solution feels like it’s light years ahead in terms of comfort and (of course) smart technology.

I certainly realize that what feels comfortable to me might not feel comfortable to you. So there is a chance that the Pod mattress might be too firm or too soft for you. However, I think that Eight Sleep has struck a good balance that should accommodate most people’s preferences. 

For us, Eight Sleep is the most comfortable mattress we’ve ever slept on, and I’m still excited every night when I go to bed and feel the cool surface of the mattress on my skin.

Medical Disclaimer

The information shared on this blog is for educational purposes only, is not a substitute for the advice of medical doctors or registered dieticians (which we are not) and should not be used to prevent, diagnose, or treat any condition. Consult with a physician before starting a fitness regimen, adding supplements to your diet, or making other changes that may affect your medications, treatment plan or overall health. MichaelKummer.com and its owner MK Media Group, LLC are not liable for how you use and implement the information shared here, which is based on the opinions of the authors formed after engaging in personal use and research. We recommend products, services, or programs and are sometimes compensated for doing so as affiliates. Please read our Terms and Conditions for further information, including our privacy policy.

18 thoughts on “Pod Pro by Eight Sleep Review”

  1. I have a sleep number bed already and was wondering if the pro cover changes the comfort of the bed itself?

    • Hi Anand,

      I don’t have first-hand experience with Sleep Number but I don’t think it would change the comfort because of how thin the Active Grid (cover) is.


  2. Aren’t you afraid your cat will pop this with its claws?
    I have considered getting the Chili pad because you can get 1 side instead of the full cover which I think would reduce said cat claws puncturing it (since my body would block them somewhat). I do like the bells and whistles of the Eight cover though.
    Do you feel one cover has more padding than the other which would protect the tubing more?

    • Hey Cara,

      Good point but so far, that hasn’t happened. We usually have a blanket or duvet on top of the mattress and so our cat hasn’t gotten a lot of opportunities to be directly on top of the mattress cover.


  3. Hi Michael, thanks for the great review! I’m considering the Pod Cover since I already have a Casper mattress that I like. Are you aware of any differences? I didn’t find anything.

    Can you feel the water tubes, electronics, etc? I’m a side/stomach sleeper (and 190lbs) so I’m curious.

    Not sure where you live but here in Michigan it gets cold and our upstairs bedroom gets about 65 at night. Have you noticed if the room temp makes much of a difference now?

    Lastly, I do love having blankets on but have to kick them off because of being too hot. Are you able to keep blankets on with your Pod?

    Thanks again!

    • Hi Matt!

      I haven’t looked at the Casper mattress but I know that a buddy of mine has and loves it. Besides being comfy, the Eight Pro mattress is CertiPur-US certified (not sure about the Casper). Everything else is pretty standard, I’d say.

      Regarding the topper, you can’t feel the tubes or sensor wires. I mean, if you probe with your fingers, you can probably make them out and you won’t feel them while in bed.

      We live in Georgia and our room cools down to about 66/67 at night. We haven’t changed that since we got Eight Sleep but I guess we could get away with a slightly warmer room if we wanted to.

      Regarding blankets — that was one of the reasons why we got the Pod Pro, I wanted to keep my blankets without overheating!


      • Awesome, thanks for the reply! Glad to hear that you can’t feel the tubes! I’m assuming you use a mattress protector over it? I’m looking at the Pod Protector too though its pricey.

        Do you know if I give any features up by using only the cover and not the mattress?


        • Hey Matt,

          We have the following setup: Mattress > Active Grid > Sheet. That’s it. You won’t lose any features by going with the Pod Pro Cover only (as far as I know). All the smarts are in the topper (Active Grid).

  4. That’s useful — both the difference in technique, and your experience with the two devices being congruent none the less. Thanks for running this to ground!

  5. “The reason for those discrepancies is that Eight Sleep measures HRV during different times of sleep than WHOOP does.” WHOOP is supposed to measure HRV during deep sleep; when does Eight?

        • Hi Mik,

          their PR department. This is what they told me: “HRV is measured throughout the night and we have a custom algorithm that converts continuous reading of HRV to a personalized baseline HRV that is useful to track on day to day basis.”

          • So, sorry to be finicky, but they don’t actually say they only take readings during deep sleep — just “throughout the night,” correct? This would arguably not be as good as sampling during deep sleep, for reasons you’ve indicated.

          • Hi Mik,

            I confirmed that Eight Sleep measures HRV during different phases of sleep (not only deep sleep). That’s the reason why the scores I get from Eight Sleep vs. WHOOP are different. However, interestingly enough, both platforms show very similar trends!

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