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PICOOC: Building An Appcessary Company for China Market with International Resources
Like many other smart body scales, Latin records and analyzes your health metrics, and then gives you health tips. After you step onto it, it takes only several seconds for Latin to record your weight, body fat, body water, BMI, BMR, muscle mass, among others. Recorded data will later be uploaded to PICOOC Health Measurement System, the software developed by the company, which will analyze and returns insights and tips for your health. You can read all the states and tips through an app on mobile devices.
Latin is the first product by PICOOC, an appcessary developer whose focus is family health. With an international design team, the company is based in Beijing. PICOOC Health Measurement System, which is responsible for analyzing data, is originally developed in the U.S.; some parts are manufactured in Japan; the final products are completed and shipped in Shenzhen, a manufacturing center in south China.
More and more appcessary developers have come to China to build businesses in this way so as to take advantage of low-cost parts and manufacturing facilities here. But their target markets, however, are developed countries. Zhang Rui, CEO and co-founder of PICOOC, told me that their target market, however, is China though they would also sell them in western countries.
Mr. Zhang points out that Chinese families have become aware of health problems and would be willing to buy a bathroom scale for the whole family to keep record of health states. An oil press for home use, the product under development, is designed tailored to Chinese users as Chinese are very concerned about oil quality.
As the measurement system, developed in the U.S., was based on data from western users. PICOOC has acquired data from Chinese authorities to change the algorithms in order to serve Chinese.
Two other products the company has developed are a wristband that, like all the smart wristbands on the market, tracks and measures your everyday activities, and a portable blood pressure meter. The two will rely on the measurement system too for delivering analytical results. The next product under development by the company is a smart oil press for home use that will only extracts oil based on health data of your family.
Latin will be put into production later this year. The price will be under 1000 yuan ($160), according to Mr. Zhang, — a price Chinese families in first- or second- tier cities can afford.
PICOOC has raised some one million US dollars in funding. The startup is the second business Mr. Zhang built. His first company, iBokanwisdom, is a chain school that trains mobile developers.
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