Nintendo Reveals First Quality-of-Life Product: A Sleep Sensor

"World-first" device measures sleep cycles and vital signs; Doesn't need to be worn.

No Caption Provided

A fatigue and sleep deprivation sensor is the first product from Nintendo's new health and lifestyle venture.

As explained for the first time by Nintendo chief executive Satoru Iwata, the sensor does not need to be worn, nor interacted with. Instead, it can be placed at the bedside and will automatically begin to measure the details of a person's sleep.

On Thursday, Iwata explained the technology during a presentation to investors. He said: "Inside the QOL Sensor is a non-contact radio frequency sensor, which measures such things as the movements of your body, breathing and heartbeat, all without physically touching your body."

This automatically-gathered data will then be transmitted to cloud servers, he added, after which the data will be analysed and sent to the user as a visualised set of graphs.

Iwata's hope is that this data can help people better understand and improve their quality of sleep. Users will also be advised on a number of methods to improve their sleep, such as exercising or changing diet.

He added: "Since fatigue per se is not regarded as a disease in the medical world, it is said to be a field where sufficient research has yet to be conducted. We have been fortunate to encounter several experts who have been conducting cutting-edge research in the science of fatigue. Together, we are now developing technology to estimate fatigue".

This sleep sensor is the first in Nintendo's new range of Quality of Life products, which Nintendo first mentioned in January.

These devices are not necessarily built with Nintendo's game consoles in mind. In fact, it is not suggested a game console such as the Wii U is required.

A slide presented to investors by Iwata suggests there will be little crossover between games and Quality of Life products.
A slide presented to investors by Iwata suggests there will be little crossover between games and Quality of Life products.

Nintendo has partnered with Dr. Yasuyoshi Watanabe as part of the venture, considered an expert in fatigue science. It has also formed a business alliance with ResMed, a US-based corporation that develops medical equipment.

Dr Watanabe said: “Accurate and simplified fatigue measurements enable self-comprehension of the body which is very significant for contemporary humans, and I think it can be used as the benchmark to improve our QOL. We will all do our utmost to achieve this world-first product.”

Iwata believes the technology is the first of its kind, and said it represents the beginning of a new venture for the company.

"A total of 125 years have passed since Nintendo started its business as a Japanese Hanafuda playing cards manufacturer," he told investors.

"By believing that putting smiles on people’s faces is the goal of entertainment, the company has continued to develop, manufacture and market many different products. The company has shown significant growth in markets overseas since 1983 by positioning dedicated video game platforms as its core business.

"As I stated in January this year, we have redefined entertainment as something that improves people’s QOL in enjoyable ways and aim to broaden our business fields. As a part of this endeavor, we are now going to newly establish this QOL improvement platform."

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email

Join the conversation
There are 79 comments about this story
79 Comments  RefreshSorted By 
  • 79 results
  • 1
  • 2
GameSpot has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to toxic conduct in comments. Any abusive, racist, sexist, threatening, bullying, vulgar, and otherwise objectionable behavior will result in moderation and/or account termination. Please keep your discussion civil.

Avatar image for clockworkengine

All our comments are useless because the QOL platform doesn't seem aimed at us. That's like apes complaining because the dog collar won't fit their necks.

Avatar image for adwerk

Or, how about we throw out all our useless gadgets and gets some peace and quiet, that usually works for a good sleep -.-

Avatar image for Vodoo

Sounds pretty damn creepy to me. Some device is gonna watch me sleep and then send that info to God knows where, where Nintendo can analyze data.

This thing is just as bad as the Kinect before Microsoft changed it's always on functionality. Who knows if it's always listening and watching.

Moreover, there's no game related functionality at all, just a creepy sleep spy. PASS!!!

Avatar image for ultimaomegazero

<< LINK REMOVED >> Maybe with Wii Fit U.

Avatar image for tbighorse138

everybody in the comment section are ridiculous. you are complaining about a sensor talking data from the side of the bed when the iphone scans your thumb print, the M$connect scans the whole room, and the PSeye watches you play games. this sleeping device will help millions of people who suffer from sleep disorders as well as help the medical field when sleeping patters need to be identified. not to mention the millions of users already existing who are wearing QOL devices give this type of data willingly. of the big three game developers nintendo is the only one that doesnt have the main menu screen riddled with advertisements and sales pitches before i try to play a game. plus you know nintendo figured out something cool to do with it when it comes to connecting it to their I.P's. cant wait to play as a drained link because i didnt get good sleep the night before, cumilate game points as you sleep, the possibilities are endless. and best of all you dont need a wii u to get the health benifits from it. it will work with your smartphones.

Avatar image for jeremyc99999

I just want to see movies of my dreams. Too bad I'll be dead long before anything like that comes to fruition.

Avatar image for Nuvendil

Lo and behold all this turned out to be was a simple device designed to establish a new supplementary revenue stream. Gee, who woulda thought? Makes the article from back in March where one reporter said the QoL was a plan to stealthily kill off the Wii U sound rather silly, no? Hopefully, the products will be a moderate success, assuming they do anything worth while. It would give Nintendo a good stable revenue stream.

Avatar image for VenkmanPHD

This is probably the smartest move they could make from a business standpoint.

Let's face it, nintendo has been going downhill for a long time now. At least a decade. We all love the games, but the actual console market has become reliably under-classed. The 3DS hit a niche-market, just like the wii did, by having 3D. Once that is the norm though (like motion controls) they will have to do something new.

It sounds to me like rather than lose a ton of money making the next "innovation" in gaming that becomes a niche, they are expanding their business.

People forget that they were around a LOOOOONG time before they ever made the NES or any other video games. Making playing cards in the 1800s in japan is where they got their start.

Sega, by comparison, used to make vending machines before video games. They however have become a perfect example of what happens in this industry when you can't learn to move on.

God willing, we will see an end to Nintendo's first party games being "Only on Nintendo". So long as they have that same lasting appeal and fun-factor.

Avatar image for tbighorse138

@VenkmanPHD LOL this made me laugh so hard. nintendo is perfectly fine. there is more of a chance of M$ and Sony going third party before nintendo. nintendo is posting profits now. as for the "only on nintendo" is the only reason they make games so good. if teams had to break up to make different versions of the same game work on multiple devices you would get third party quality games that come out broken and buggy. nintendo is nintendo because of how they approach technology. i think they will incorporate this sleep monitor in awesome ways to their I.P's. i am looking forward to this.

Avatar image for catsimboy

Truly this will save the Nintendo we all love. Oh wait no it won't. Nintendo is basically trying to force itself into a new market based on stupid health gadgets and judging by the size of the QOL bubble on that slide it looks like they're letting gaming fall by the wayside.

Avatar image for Nuvendil

<< LINK REMOVED >> What? All this is a supplementary revenue stream for the company. Nintendo has done none-gaming things before. If anything, Nintendo is doubling down on gaming with new IPs, funded third party and second party exclusives, and more. This thing is two years away and didn't even get that much attention during Nintendo's quarterly earnings discussions. Stop making a bunch of drama where there is none.

Avatar image for VenkmanPHD

<< LINK REMOVED >> If you think Nintendo would let Mario "Fall to the wayside" then you are high. Stop huffing glue.

Avatar image for JDWolfie

I think Nintendo has been watching too much A Nightmare on Elm Street this month.

Avatar image for deactivated-58270bc086e0d

Doesn't need to be worn. So will be about as accurate as placing a potato on your bed side table to measure when you are in REM sleep?

Avatar image for xcollector

I already hate this product because of the use of cloud servers and my personal information. I won't support it or give it a chance. If this is Nintendo's future they should go out of business.

Avatar image for Garm31


The rest I agree with. But going out of business? Kidding right?

Avatar image for Garm31

This thing is about as useful as an a'sshole on your elbow.

Avatar image for maxpowr3

So Nintendo is now Santa?

Avatar image for Xristophoros

nintendo wants to know your personal habits and data now! lots of money to be made be selling to 3rd parties! isolated advertising related to your specific characteristics and needs! storing all your personal information on the cloud! what a load of scum this is. what happens if i am fatigued due to too much smash bros and mario kart? is nintendo really going to tell me to lay off the video games? i think not. they want people cracked up on their products as it means higher profit margins after all.

Avatar image for Thanatos2k

Does this sound kind of creepy to anyone else? Shall we upload our sleep data to their server for processing?

Avatar image for HonorOfGod

And just like that they drop the ball... did they not see what happened to Microcreep with this type of BS? smh this is why third party cant stand you Iwata.

Avatar image for BrunoBRS

<< LINK REMOVED >> it's... not aimed for gamers. it's not a wii u accessory.

it's like complaining sony is ruining the PS4 by releasing, idunno, anything else.

Avatar image for HonorOfGod

PS. I played smash and its a slow POS I rather play Mele or smash 64.

Avatar image for sanchango

<< LINK REMOVED >> the speed levels of smash are like this Melee>Smash 3ds/wii u>Brawl>64
So you're complaining over the speed of something that is only 2nd in speed to melee and would rather play a slower version too? weird

Also, I don't see the need to rage over something that's not game related. This isn't for the wii U or a nintendo console, they're branching out to a new market.

Microcreep? Lol if you think the kinect records you, then remove the tinfoil hat.

Avatar image for elheber

I wonder what kind of data we'll be sending when we're in the middle of coitus. I'm not too comfortable with this, but at least it's a side business.

Avatar image for wookiegr

But is it intelligent enough to signal an alarm when a bounty hunter tries to murder me in my sleep?

Avatar image for Garm31


Dengar tried it on with me once. How do think he got all those bandages?... I fried his ass with a plasma grenade.

Avatar image for noobeq2

Thank you Nintendo you will help me with me "Sleep Apnoea Syndrome " really that cna help me BETTER SLEEP without i will die in sleep. THANKS!!! you make hope for me sleep will be beatifull i cant wait anymore for that!!!!!!!

Avatar image for Ripper_TV

When is it out? No info. So why get excited?? It'll be years until this thing comes out.

P.S. It'll probably die unborn as did the vitality sensor or never be released outside Japan.

Avatar image for fillup0

Nintendo wants to watch me as I sleep basically.

I fapped to Peach once so I guess it's revenge.

Avatar image for thetravman

Kind of weird coming from Nintendo but I love this idea. My sleeping habits are awful.

Avatar image for theJGAR

So everyone knows that this will not sell right? Who looks at this and wants it? You know I think Nintendo would benefit best if they focused on their games. Maybe if Super Smash Bros was out for the Wii U and we had updates and info on the new Zelda and a new Metroid people would be buying their system.

Avatar image for YearoftheSnake5

It's extra revenue for Nintendo if this thing is a success. Diversifying their product line isn't a bad thing.

Avatar image for balaysked

What did I just read?

Avatar image for amaneuvering

What a total waste of breath. This isn't entertainment. If this is where Nintendo is going to put a large chunk of it's resources in the future then I don't know how I feel about the company. This kind of crap doesn't interest me in the slightest. I mean is there any actual entertainment aspect to this thing at all or is it just something that some kind of health and fitness company should be making?

The notion that this is a product that leapfrogs current home console, handheld and mobile gaming technology is absurd because it's not even in the same field or product category.

How does this put a smile on your face?

To me it just makes you worried about stuff you probably didn't even bother about before.

Avatar image for fillup0

<< LINK REMOVED >> Have you seen how much money Nintendo has? It's never been Nintendo's style to overbloat every project with money like most triple A devs, so why not have an offshoot?

Avatar image for ArabrockermanX

Interesting device but I hope Nintendo isn't planning on taking its focus off of games...

Avatar image for Fartman7998

I wonder if sleeping with a fan(s) on would affect the way the product works.

Avatar image for hippystank

<< LINK REMOVED >> Good question, I too sleep with a fan on.

Avatar image for Halloll

Nintendo watch you sleeping, and upload it to the cloud. how can we be sure they won't sell our biometric data?

  • 79 results
  • 1
  • 2