There has been a vain fight against a particular medical condition that has gone on longer than the battle against the common cold – and that’s snoring. If someone tells you they don’t snore, don’t believe them. At some point or other, they are going to let out an annoying grunt during the night. And if the odd grumble turns into a constant jack-hammer impression, relationships are going to get strained.

There have been a million ‘cures’ over the generations, but one thing always works – nudging the snorer so they change their position in bed. So, the answer is simple. A snorer’s partner just needs to stay up all night, nudging.

Of course this is not very practical, particularly for the nudger, as usually the nudgee knows nothing about their snoring habit. So how about something mechanical that you stick under your pillow and reacts to the sound of snoring and carries out that gentle nudge? Brilliant, and here is it, the Smart Nora. Geddit?

The Smart Nora does work, of sorts. A member of our team used it for a couple of weeks and other members of the team periodically checked progress, for as long as they could stay awake themselves.

After setup which took just mere minutes, the results were mixed. The snoring seemed to be eliminated, but it was not very comfortable for the snorer. Stiff necks were reported the morning after, and a generally uncomfortable night on top of the Smart Nora.

But here’s the kicker – perhaps that is because they snored so much that the machine worked so hard that sleep was constantly interrupted with the rise and fall motion the pillow machine creates. That in turn stimulates those throat muscles that have been closing up and prevent that annoying vibration of air we call snoring.

It is quiet, even in the dead of night and setup was simple. A mains powered compressor feeds air into the pillow, essentially making it go up and down. The range of movement is quite large and that could be the source of the neck niggles. As there are air tubes going into the pillow, it also helps if you are not one of those who like to stick their arm under their heads, as you may get tangled.

They call it non-contact, but that’s not quite true, as it makes contact with the head, albeit with your own pillow in between. But it does seem so much better than those weird snore strips you fix to your nose or over your mouth.

The Smart Nora is also incredibly small making it quite portable, especially with a rechargeable battery. The sensitivity is pretty accurate too. It rarely moves to any other noise apart from snoring or pretend near snoring noises. These noises are picked up by a small ‘remote’ sensor left next to the bed.

Advice that comes in the Smart Nora box reads like this, and is worth taking note of. “Your first week. For best results, use Smart Nora for two consecutive weeks. Allow 3-7 nights for the snorer to get used to the gentle motion of the pillow.”

There is also a one year warranty. It is expensive at around £270 at the time of writing, but it is new and innovative so could come down as supply and demand levels out. Try it – it is a subtle device that does cut snoring, so long as you are happy with the amount of movement in your pillow. The Smart Nora Snore Detection Device is available from Selfridges now.