Clutch spoke with Charles Teague, Founder and CEO of Lose It!, as part of a series of interviews about wearable technology.
Learn more about Lose It! at Loseit.com.
Lose It!'s founding mission is to help people lose weight by providing the tools necessary to assist them not only in creating and maintaining healthful habits and lives but also in attaining their weight loss goals. The company reaches its audience through an application-based platform that includes a website portal, mobile application, wearable application, and integration with a number of top health and fitness brands.
Could you describe Lose It!’s wearable application?
Mobile Platform Features
Lose It! is an app-based weight loss and digital health program that allows members to log their daily meals by searching our database, which includes more than 25 billion food choices, or using the bar code scanner to enter food directly into your account.
The free version allows members to join public groups, enter challenges, connect socially with friends, and receive automated reports and reminders about their weight loss goals.
We also offer a Premium version for $39.99/year. With Premium, members gain access to additional features, like meal planning, sleep tracking, water intake tracking, and glucose monitoring, as well as entrance into exclusive groups and challenges and ‘Patterns’, a feature that gives helpful feedback on what personal food and exercise choices are helping or hindering weight loss goals.
We also developed a Lose It! scale to make weight loss tracking even easier. The Lose It! scale is Bluetooth enabled and automatically syncs a person’s weigh-in to the Lose It! app. Our scale also monitors body fat and hydration levels.
The Lose It! app is available for iOS and Android, and can also be used on any desktop, laptop, Nook, or Kindle. Lose It! seamlessly integrates with top health and fitness brands, including Google Fit, Jawbone, FitBit, Nike, Misfit, Withings, Strava, MapMyFitness, Apple Health, and RunKeeper.
Wearable Application Features
We didn’t do what many other app developers have done – shrink our regular version down to a smaller scale – rather we worked to build a new app that delivers the most critical components to our members. These features include detailed personal insights, quick tap logging, and easy meal tracking. The wearable functinalities aim to enhance members’ abilities to stay healthy from their Apple Watches.
Source: Lose It!
What business challenge or opportunity were you trying to address with the development of a wearable application?
When we first started out, we found that there was a shortage of weight loss apps that offered a customized program tailored to individual needs. Lose It! is different because it makes weight loss personal and works for people of all ages, genders, and backgrounds, regardless of lifestyle and activity level.
We wanted to provide people with a more holistic view of their overall digital health, which is why we chose to integrate with so many other health and fitness brands and include features like nutritional data, sleep cycle monitoring, and the ability to set blood glucose, blood pressure, and exercise goals.
Weight loss is not as simple as counting calories. We employ our core principles of nutritional science, behavioral science, and leading edge software development to bring our members the most consistent, inclusive weight loss program possible.
While developing the app, we knew that for it to be successful, it needed to be easy to track progress and provide an enjoyable experience for the user. If using Lose It! was a chore, people wouldn’t adopt it as a part of their daily routine.
To make it attractive to users, we built in the ability for members to add custom foods to the database, form community groups, and engage in challenges. These additions enabled/created a system of camaraderie, support, and fun that incentivize weight loss and promote sticking to daily calorie counts.
What challenges did you face during the project's rollout, and what steps did you take to overcome these challenges?
The biggest challenge arose when we were trying to get the application’s form factor correct.
When you're working on a wearable app that extends from an existing mobile app, there is a temptation to simply re-implement everything in the existing app on the wearable. This temptation is really dangerous because how and when a person interacts with a watch or wearable is really different from how and when they use a phone (or even a laptop or desktop).
When you’re working on a wearable, you have to start at the ground level and consider what parts of the mobile app experience make sense on the wearable.
In Lose It!'s case, we predicted that the most-used feature would be the ability to check your status at a glance. But, we also thought there was a great opportunity on the Apple Watch to simplify the process of logging something you’ve eaten.
Our first generation wearable app focused on these two scenarios, and we think these features really deliver on the key parts of the wearable experience.