Boeing to offer ‘Cuddle Chairs’ to Economy Passengers

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Jack had to take a six hour long flight from New York to Los Angeles. Having slept for just four hours over the last two days, he felt it imperative to use the flight to catch up on some sleep. Jack had hoped he would swim in the ocean of deep slumber during his flight. Instead, he got a sore neck because of resting his head on the windshield, got pulled up by the lady sitting next to him for resting his head on her shoulders and found out that he was a tad too tall to bend down and rest his head on the bench meant for keeping the food tray. I hope someone devises a way to help people sleep better on planes, Jack wished in agony. He let out a disgruntled sigh, gave up on his attempt to fall asleep and pulled out the magazine kept in the pouch attached to the seat in front of him.

He began munching a sandwich and scrolling through the pages of the magazine. When Jack jumped over to the technology section, he was stumped by what he read in one of the reports. The article was about how Boeing might be working on a plan to help flyers sleep better or as in Jack’s case, sleep at all. Why did I not wish for a million dollars or a treasure chest or a magic lamp, he kicked himself. The article reported that Boeing had recently been granted a patent (US8985693) that disclosed a sleep support system. What Jack saw on the pages in front of him looked like the following.

The patent’s sleep support system didn’t promise a cosy bed or a recliner on the plane. And yet it seemed a significant step forward in the direction of making flights more sleep-friendly. The system disclosed in the patent included a backpack with a head cushion, a chest cushion and standoff supports to provide clearance for a passenger’s abdomen. A ‘sling’ was shown to be attached to the backpack for supporting the passenger’s arms. One could even adjust the angle of the headrest and torso supports.

That's how the cuddle chair works! Source:

That’s how the cuddle chair works!

Jack was highly impressed by what Boeing promised and really wanted to day dream about sleeping comfortably using the system disclosed. His practical self tried to warn him that Boeing might take years to execute this invention. However, being an optimistic person, he was happy that someone realised the hardships he and many others go through while flying. It might not be long before such assistive tools are attached to a plane’s seats, he pondered and looked out the window. For now I should use the beautiful view outside to relax and revitalize.

(Featured image source:

Ambuj Srivastava
Ambuj Srivastava

Armed with a pen and paper, Ambuj can spend hours writing about anything and everything. A compulsive patent decoder, he can shred technology to its smallest bit as easily as he can translate his findings into a blog.

1 Comment

  1. Hello,

    Ref. Your Boeing Cuddle Seat Article – I have already developed and patented the standalone sit up and sleep personal backpack version – US Patent Number 8,333,308.

    I have already produced a backpack product to rest/ sleep sitting on short/ long haul travel, sitting in any transport mode, be it by air, bus, train, car or ferry.

    While the recent Boeing backpack idea is aimed at an airplane seat, my backpack patent relates to all forms of travel. It includes a soft removable chin rest and armrest and additionally provides contents security while resting or sleeping sitting up. It holds the user in a comfortable good upright posture and allows the user to make full use of any seat’s headrest. It further allows sleep while avoiding neck and back strain. It protects hair style while sleeping and even face makeup is protected. Sleeping sitting upright avoids blood pooling, ie dark circles/ bags forming under the eyes. When sleeping this way on long haul, the user awakens looking just as fresh as when he or she boarded the flight!

    Boeing’s current patent is uni-functional and fixed to a seat, whereas mine is multi-functional, ie it’s a personal carry-on allowing the traveller to store valuables in the backpack and secondly it provides tremendous protection for the backpack’s contents as the traveller, when using the backpack in sleep mode, wears the bag on the front and hugs it using the armrest at the front of the backpack knowing that he or she will awaken if someone tries to open the backpack whether the person is travelling by bus, plane or any other mode of seated transport.

    Please see for further information. We are currently seeking distribution licensees.

    Thank you,

    Joe Maginness
    Belfast, Ireland.

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