Misfit Wearables Puts Design First in New Activity Tracker

12/31/12Follow @xconomy

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calories burned. Users can also wear it in the pool. And like the FuelBand, it has a pretty minimal light display. But Vu believes that it’s far more wearable than other products.

“You can wear it anywhere on your body,” he says. “Women can wear it as a hairpin or necklace.” Misfit Wearables also offers accessories that make it easy to wear as a watch, or a clip that can attach it to clothing.

Vu also points out that the design is particularly useful in Asian cultures, where wearing plastic to a formal event goes against common etiquette.

“In Asia, in a business casual setting it would be somewhat insulting to other folks,“ he says.

Misfit Wearables’ 22-person team is split between the company’s two headquarters, with 10 employees in San Francisco and 22 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

It’s a small company to take on Goliaths like Nike that produce similar products, but Vu is unfazed by the competition. “It’s not the first time we’ve been in a market that’s very competitive,” he says.

Misfit designed the Shine fitness tracker to be wearable in many locations.

Misfit designed the Shine to be wearable in many locations.

When he started AgaMatrix, there were already 30 glucose meters on the market. When the first product was finished more than three years later, there were 68. “We believed it was a growing market. Indeed it was—an exploding market. Four years later were doing over $50 million in revenue. $50 million is tiny in a $10 billion market, but $50 million is a lot bigger than zero. We’re comparing to zero, not total market share.”

And he believes that consumer tracking devices will explode as well.

“If we can hit the sweet spot where people can track activity and be inspired to be healthy and not look like robots, we’re in for a ride,” he says.

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