What to Know About Calm, The Meditation App That Sponsored Election Night

Twitter can't decide if the partnership was genius or trollish

calm app
The solution to election fatigue?
Calm App

Much to the amusement of a panicking electorate, CNN’s presidential election coverage last night was brought to you by Calm, an app that specializes in guided meditations.

The unlikely sponsor provided a bit of lighthearted fare on social media, where many commenters (realizing they were going to bed without an election result) were otherwise ending the night tweeting about needles — both The New York Times’ pesky “forecast needles,” and the variety that you might stab into your eyes.

The internet can’t seem to decide whether Calm’s unexpected placement was “genius” or “trollish,” but the fact that people are riffing on a health app at all right now — in the midst of a drawn-out election that could decide the fate of our country for decades to come — seems like a big win for the brand.

Calm was already one of the most popular meditation apps available, right up there with Headspace and The Mindfulness App. It saw a huge increase in attention (according to Google Trends data) during lockdown as the world grappled with feelings of isolation and burnout. And now, thanks to what we can only imagine was a significant investment, the app is being discussed alongside the 2020 election.

Based on Calm’s own Twitter page, this appears part of a multi-pronged marketing approach. The account has tweeted out a series of bite-sized meditative tips and tricks since coverage began yesterday afternoon, which truly are worth your time:

Twitter users appear to agree, with many thanking the app for its role in delivering on its namesake this morning. Others even credited Calm with helping them fall asleep last night. For anyone else intrigued, Calm is free with in-app purchases. It offers guided sessions ranging from three to 25 minutes long, plus sleep rhythms, breathing cycles and nature sounds. The app also uploads new meditations each day, and features “entry-level” programs ranging from 1-3 weeks for beginners who may feel a bit intimidated.

Not to mention Calm has a penchant for fetching big-name celebrities. The app recently made waves for pairing with Harry Styles, who narrates a sleep story called “Dream With Me” for Calm users, and in the past has worked with stars like Eva Green, Matthew McConaughey, Cillian Murphy, Ellie Goulding and Scottie Pippen.

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