Four years after co-founder Eric Carrel took over, Withings continues its return to the fore, with a new product presented at IFA in Berlin. In the German capital, the former tricolor leader of connected objects has unveiled Body Comp, a new connected impedance meter, which expands a range already made up of three models (Body, Body + and Body Cardio).
Together with the innovations embodied in the machine, which will be commercialized from October 4th at a price of € 209.95, the outstanding service combined with it marks a turning point in Withings’ strategy. In fact, the French brand has opened Health +, a health analysis service that adds functionality to the Withings Health Mate app. This is necessary to take advantage of forecasts, trends, and historical data on vascular age, pulse wave velocity, standing heart rate measurements, as well as nerve health score.
It’s not a fitness service, it’s really a health service.
With this new service, accessible by subscription but paired for now exclusively with Body Comp with 12 months free, Withings intends to push the support it offers its users even further. “It’s not a fitness service, it’s really a health service. We don’t want you to lose weight to make you look better, we want you to lose weight to be healthierMatthew Litumbi, CEO of Withings, confirms.
In this sense, the company wants to position Health + as a default partner for users to adopt healthy behaviors. “The user does not always have the keys to understanding their data. The different metrics need to be explained, and the user needs to be supported telling them how to act on their body in order to achieve their goals”Matteo Litumbi explains. In this sense, the French company has developed six-week modules focusing on physical activity, sleep, stress management and nutrition, “Because this is about how long it takes someone to change their behavior and their routines.”says the manager.
new income line
If this new premium service is good for the body of Withings clients, it is also good for the finances of the connected health professional. “A subscription adds a revenue edge, while we have an ecosystem of products with incredible retention. 50% of people who bought a scale from us 10 years ago are still using it today. We have 1 million new users a year who spend money with us, buy a product”, says Matteo Litumbi. In this context, Health + could thus become a new hen with golden eggs for the French startup.
Plus, if the balance connected to the Body Components is met in the Health+ orbit, the service will be held at the same time as one of the French products, and will be connected by the Santé Connected Body Scan station, which will be commercially available in January 2023. in Europe. “It would be a natural evolution after the Body Comp app, body scans, and smartwatches. But first we want to see how the service is received by our users. It already uses activity data from our watches, just because we haven’t made it accessible to all watch users. If someone has If you are a Body Comp company and one of our watches, their activity information will be taken into account through the service brick.”specifies the CEO of Withings.
Crane in B2B
Health + is the icing on the cake, and it is also a lever for progress in the B2B sector. “Our B2B division works with health systems, who support hundreds of thousands of patients with our products. We are thinking of offering this kind of service to health systems. Because with better correlation between different data, alerts will be smarter for doctors”Matteo Litumbi exposes. The leader also thinks of insurance companies: “We’re already in discussions with some so that they can offer the service to their policyholders. They’re convinced that they’re going to have a return on investment, because their policyholders are going to be in better health. It probably gives them balance.”
If this strategy bears fruit, it will then make a strong contribution to Withings’ growth in B2B, a sector that currently accounts for between 15% and 20% of the company’s turnover. The stated goal is to increase this share to 50% of revenues in the coming years. In Matteo Litumbi’s view, the range of possibilities will expand exponentially with this brand-new premium service: “We are at the beginning of what we want to do with Health+.”
However, if such a service is beneficial to the health of users, it raises questions about the monetization of tools to monitor their safety. Admittedly, the subscription economy is in fashion, driven by Amazon and Apple, who offer a slew of services for a monthly subscription. But the concentration of health data by private players, who offer paid-for-subscription services, could quickly raise concerns about potential abuse. What is currently at stake is not only the digital transformation of health, but also the potential replacement of public services with offers from private parties.
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