Unless you’re an obsessive “morning” person, making the bed first thing after waking ranks right up there with banging your knee on the night stand. Understanding that most people would just like to turn around and see the bed magically made, Spanish furniture company OHEA is offering a self-making “smart bed” that tidies the sheet and pillows the moment you stand up.
The bed of the future has been the staple of popular science magazines and feature writers for decades. There’s been everything predicted and made, from beds with built-in radios and televisions, self-heating or cooled mattresses, to ones that roll out onto the porch for fresh-air sleeping. There have even been ones that promised to wash their own sheets. The OHEA Smart Bed is a bit more modest, in that it sticks to just making itself.
The Smart Bed is relatively simple in concept. It’s based on the premise that making the bed on a daily basis is basically an exercise in sheet straightening. If the bed is simplified and designed with this in mind, it’s not that difficult to get it to make itself. The key to this is the bed’s specially-made pillows and sheet. The pillows are attached by cords to a mechanism in the headboard, while the sheet is secured to the foot of the bed with Velcro and has cords sewn into its lateral sides. A bed with only a sheet may seem a bit chilly to most people, but it’s designed more along the lines of a duvet cover, so bedding can be inserted in cold weather.
The bed-making process starts with the Smart Bed's weight sensor. When the bed is occupied, it’s switched off, but after the sleeper rises, the bed waits three seconds and activates. The mechanism in the headboard pulls the pillows straight and raises them. Meanwhile, a pair of lids running down the sides of the mattress open and a pair of robotic arms deploy. These hook the cords in the sheet at the foot of the bed and then the arms run to the head of the bed. As they do so, the sheet is straightened and pulled up. After this, the pillows are dropped, the arms retract and the lids close, leaving behind a neatly-made bed. The whole operation takes about 50 seconds, and can be seen in the video at the bottom of the page.
If you’re someone whose dog or cat jumps on the bed to claim the warm spot as soon as you get up, you don’t need to worry about it getting caught in the mechanism. OHEA says that the weight sensor acts as a safety cut-out, stopping the bed-making if anyone sits on it. How small a cat this will work on is unclear. Also, the bed can be set to only operate on manual, in which case it’s activated by a simple push of a button.
The OHEA Smart Bed is not currently for sale, but the company is taking queries at its website. Until then, corner tucking will need to be done the old-fashioned way ... or you could always get yourself a Zip Bed.