Startups, Technology

Can Indian Startup Boltt Become Fitbit’s Biggest Competitor?

There’s still time before wearable bands & smartwatches replace smartphones for communication, until then they are perfect for at least one use case for sure – tracking health & fitness. Consumers now have a suite of fitness bands to choose from, fitting their budget, requirements and style.

NASDAQ listed Fitbit has over 16.9 million active users globally, with a market share of 24.5%. It is followed by budget gadget maker Xiaomi 19% share. Apple too is catching up with its smartwatch closely. The fight for the market share is tough. Most of the advanced fitness trackers are priced high, and there is a constant need to innovate and stand out to justify the price tag. Regardless of this stiff competition, Indian startup ‘Boltt’ is entering the market with a suite of AI enabled smart gadgets.

Introducing Boltt

Boltt is a sports technology brand, founded by Arnav Kishore with a vision to create an ecosystem of the most advanced running wearable & apps, to help users improve their fitness & health.

boltt wearables

Boltt Wearables (A smart shoe & a smart band) work in sync with an AI health coach ‘B’. All the wearables generate data to help user set fitness goals, but that’s where the use of data ends, this firm wants to change that. “Till now, all activity trackers and wearables gave data. We are conspiring to change that by inferring this data and giving it meaning.”, shared Arnav Kishore, CEO & Founder.

The company aims to provide every user with a personalised coach, in the form of a self-learning AI, that leverages the data generated by the wearables & the app. The company claims to have on boarded a set of influencers and advisers ranging from Marathoners, Tri-Athletes, Data Scientists, world renowned Biokineticists, Nutritionists and Sleep Experts to help it refine & train the AI algorithm.

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The Product

The company has partnered with Garmin, one of the leaders in wearable sensors, to work on various sensor forms that capture all forms of body data (mechanical and cardiovascular).

As mentioned above, it has launched two hardware products – a smart shoe and a fitness band, that work in tandem with its application. The team believes that the mobile application will be their biggest differentiator.

The app is said to be loaded with ‘hundreds of scientifically designed workouts and training plans’. The AI assistant ‘B’ is an audio coach, which can give instructions during work outs, along with real time feedback on the basis of the data it gets from the devices.

While the product would be officially launched at CES 2017, it is already being tested elsewhere for validation and enhancement. “All products are commercialised and beta tested. Boltt is gearing up for a launch campaign in the next 45-60 days” says Aayushi.

In order to gain more insights, the company has tied up with schools in US for user testing. Aayushi adds “Boltt is trying to promote health and fitness among school kids, in a big way. Our sensors have been deployed in a number of schools in the US. More than thousands of children are exercising and and tracking their fitness levels and activity with Boltt.”

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Future & Plans in the Pipeline

It had raised an undisclosed amount of investment recently, and has manufacturing units in China. When asked about the price point, the team doesn’t reveal it, but Aayushi says ‘We cannot reveal the pricing right now, but it will be in the “white space”, where there is immense vacuum.’. They have already aligned channel partners for distribution in India and abroad and will be available for commercial sale, towards the end of the 1st quarter 2017.

About the Founders

Shown above - Boltt Founders, Aayushi Kishore & Arnav Kishore

Shown above – Boltt Founders, Aayushi Kishore & Arnav Kishore

Arnav has always been a sports enthusiast. Being an international tennis player at a very young age, he always had a passion to create something futuristic and unique for sportsmen and fitness enthusiasts. With the same conviction, Arnav, co-founded Globalite Industries Pvt Ltd, at the age of 18. Combining his passion for sports, technology, and entrepreneurship, he is now exploring the world of wearable technology and heading the Boltt Sports Technologies Pvt Ltd, an innovative wearable tech company.

Aayushi stepped out of active management at Globalite in 2015 and went on to co-found Boltt Sports Technologies. She leads the CMO role at Boltt. The two have together built a team of 50 people, including data scientists, AI developers and fitness experts to tackle with the problem.

Do you think they can create their space in the global fitness wearables sector? Share your views in the comments below

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