The past couple of years have witnessed a steady uptick in the sale of fitness wristbands in India. According to a report by IDC, the country imported approximately 3 million wearable devices in the second quarter of 2019. Of this large shipment, fitness wristbands accounted for an impressive 35% share!
Bands with lower price points are a clear customer favorite and dominate the market, but they house basic features and hardware that are mostly inaccurate. On the other hand, their more expensive counterparts are equipped with game-changing functionalities that can even detect atrial fibrillation and other health ailments. However, in order to access these costly devices, a customer will have to shell out anything between ₹16,000-53,000, a sum which is not feasible for most.
In addition to the huge cost, the data models used in the wearables are from Non-Indian Physiology. This makes them have a non-focused analytics model, when it comes to outcome oriented segment like sports, fitness practice, etc.,
We, at URUFIT, believe that the quality of health tracking devices do not necessarily have to be expensive. In addition to the cost factor, the tracking and computing should be as accurate as possible, since the wearable will be used by elite high performance athletes.Our device measures heart rate and heart rate variability continuously with an ability to detect unreliable data. This unreliable data- "The noise" is ignored when the computation is done, making the physiological tracking very accurate to obtain near lab results. This feature bundle is not part of any wearable device in the market today.
Moreover, we also profess that a wearable that is customized to monitor the Indian physiology is the need of the hour. To make this dream a reality, URUFIT has collaborated with some key partners and interests who play a constructive role in the making of this device. Let’s take a look at our different partners and interests.
1.HARDWARE For the hardware, URUFIT has linked with a European based leading technology provider, who brings in 10 years of experience with building medical applications.Together, we have been able to craft a device that can collate health data comprehensively and produce accurate outcomes.
Sampling rates of URUFIT are twice as high as other wearables in the market today. There is a separate processing stage that takes care of the motion artifacts, thus the signals can be reconstructed perfectly. This method also helps with computing heart rate variability consistently, thereby being able to detect a variety of health ailments like Atrial Fibrillation in advance.
2.VALIDATION To support the claims and different functionalities of the device, URUFIT has sought the assistance of two academic institutions. The first is IIITDM, who, through their incubation center - “Made It”, is supporting us on building the next generation of our offerings. Moreover, the institution also provided interns who aided with the testing phase.
The second is an Institute of National importance, which facilitated the testing and validation of the device on the Indian population by providing the necessary subjects and protocols.
3.CALIBRATION This aspect is critical to the development and enhancement of the URUFIT device.Here,URUFIT is working closely with two sports academies — 1) Centre for Sports Science (CSS), Chennai, and 2) Inspire Institute of Sports (IIS), Bangalore.
The two academies help us in building data models and also prove handy when testing the device for any hiccups and resolving any pain-points.
Moreover, the infrastructure available at these academies ranks among the best in the Country. This gives us the added benefit of ranking our device against world-class, performance-measuring equipment. For instance, we were able to optimize its algorithm and improve the accuracy of our device’s VO2Max estimation by juxtaposing it against the results derived from the conventional lab machine. A similar story can be seen in our effort to streamline our PPG sensor’s heart rate calculation to match that of an ECG reading.
4.GOVERNMENT Of late, the Indian government has begun taking an active interest in the well-being of the population. This interest is complemented by the launch of nation-wide initiatives such as Fit India and Khelo India. With these initiatives in mind, URUFIT has approached the Tamil Nadu government with a proposal to assist with Fit India’s implementation in schools throughout the state. If accepted, URUFIT can help the state government to identify talent at an early stage. Likewise, for Khelo India, URUFIT can supplement young and veteran athletes with access to top-notch fitness monitoring technology, thereby helping them improve their performance.
Apart from the above collaborations, URUFIT also has an active advisory panel comprising of sport science experts, cardiologists, and other individuals who understand the technology. This panel helps with brainstorming and guidance, which proves vital to the evolution of the URUFIT device.The diverse set of participants engaging in the development of URUFIT are playing an instrumental role in pioneering this technology. They are also helping us create a robust,feature-rich, and, importantly, affordable fitness device built specifically for the Indian Athletes.