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With one third of our population suffering from insomnia, it’s no surprise that we spend millions of dollars on helping us get to sleep. The two of us are blessed to mostly not fall into that category, but with work demands, what’s making the news, worries over health – the list goes on – there are those occasional times when we have trouble getting a good night’s rest.

Glow in hand

We’ve been looking for a non-intrusive “smart” lamp to use in our bedroom, one with a minimalist design that we can operate either with an app or manually. Casper’s recently brought their Glow Light to market, and of the smart lamps out there, this one seemed right up our alley!

With winter’s dark days and harsh day light, we got a pair to check out (they’re sold both as a single and double set, each with its own charging base).

Casper Glow-4
[What’s in the box — the second charging stand is upstairs]

Out of the box, you can use the Glow on its own, but for more options, downloading the iOS/Android Casper Glow app lets you sync and manage the lights either as a group or individually, depending on each of your wake-up time preferences.

Casper glow app Casper glow app

The cylindrical Glow has a small physical footprint too, perfect for condos and small homes. It measures 133mm (5.25”) with a 95mm (3.75”) diameter and weighs 350g (the base and cable weighs 200g). The cable is 150cm (five feet) in length.

Casper Glow-2

There’s a large button on either end of the Casper Glow. Pressing either one while the light is dimming will hold the light (it pulses as confirmation). To resume dimming the light, just press either button again.

Casper Glow-3
[Glow, about 10 minutes into dimming cycle in the evening]

Turn it on by flipping it over, adjusting the brightness by swivelling the light. If you turn it on manually, it cuts the dimming time in half (this can be resolved by changing the dimming time via a slider in the app). The Glow app lets you set how long it takes to come on and turn off, and at what time.

Casper glow app Casper glow app
[L to R: Set to wake once and weekdays]

The auto wake feature can be set from 10 to 30 minutes. This means it will use 10 (to 30) minutes to gradually come on, then that same amount of time to dim down.

Touching the top of the light makes it pause the sleep feature of the light (at whatever point of brightening or dimming it’s at) and will keep the light on. If you’re someone who has a rough time getting out of the bed in the morning, this may be your best bet, otherwise you may fall back to sleep after 30 minutes.

Glow in hand

There’s a built-in ambient light sensor so you can pick up the Glow in the middle of the night and give it a gentle wiggle for just enough light to see your way to the bathroom or fridge for a midnight snack. Turn it upside down to shut it off again. This would also be great for camping (provided you’ve got a place to charge the base on occasion).

Casper Glow-5
[Glow in “nightlight” mode after being wiggled into action]

The battery lasts about seven hours on continuous use. While off its charging base, the light can last a few days of dimming and waking. It blinks periodically three times to let you know it’s low on power. You can also see the remaining battery power via the app.

Casper glow app Casper glow app
[Glow light names can be edited within the app – Galileo and Sunny are two default names]

The Glow’s biggest feature is its ability to slowly dim itself for bedtime, then gently wake you up without the need of an alarm clock. You basically let the slow dim of the Glow turn itself off as your body prepares for rest.

Casper Glow
[Glow with about 15 minutes left until dark]

A robust, diffused polycarbonate outer shell gives the Glow durability; the light uses Bluetooth to communicate.

Casper glow app Casper glow app

For the lighting, the Glow uses a combined 36x warm white LED array with 12x accent LEDs in amber, measuring 2700k colour temperature. Certain types of light can impact the quality of your sleep, which is why the Glow was designed to produce a warm hue of 2700k. This translates to little to no blue light (aka device screens), shown to stimulate our brains and disrupt our natural sleep rhythms.

It’s also fun to use: to dim the lamp (and set a more ambient mood in your bedroom) simply twist it until you hit your desired light level.

Glow couple sleeping

Conclusion

Casper recently added the option of choosing the days of the week you’d like the alarm to be set for, but doesn’t offer a second alarm to be set (e.g. for your partner) if you’re flying solo with one Glow.

Admittedly, we still use our alarm clocks together with the Glows. This way, light comes into the room gradually as we’re waking up from the alarm. At times I would wake up organically (ahead of the alarm) and look over to see the Glow already at its brightest setting. Maybe my body’s natural clock sensed the light?

We hope to see the app one day allow you to select options for a more yellow and realistic candle-like glow in addition to the standard white.

Casper glow app Casper glow app

The Glow retails for CAD $140 (single)/CAD $260 (double) and comes with a six-month limited warranty plus a 30-day hassle-free return policy if you’re not happy with it.

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