Withings is a company that develops and brings to market a range of devices and applications designed to help individuals monitor and track their health. Founded in 2009, Withings has introduced a number of smart products — lifestyle-friendly devices that integrate a wireless network and fit seamlessly into people’s lives by connecting to phones and computers to provide information about various aspects of their health. The company now works with more than 100 partner apps and services to this end.
The upgraded Smart Body Analyzer (this is the WS-50 model), is the latest product from Withings to hit the market. The WS-50 is a Wi-Fi enabled set of bathroom scales that tracks weight, body composition, heart rate and — get this — air quality, for up to eight people.
The key aspect of this new product is indeed the new air quality sensor that checks indoor air quality by measuring temperature and carbon dioxide levels. The tracking app builds a CO2-level graph highlighting thresholds that have a detrimental effect and alerts users as and when necessary.
A key and long-used strategy for product development at Withings is the integration of 3D printing early in the development process to validate its designs, eliminate risk where possible and improve time to market. Bastien Rechke, an R&D mechanical engineer at Withings, explained: “In the development process, there are always phases during which we use 3D printing. It is really helpful to have physical pieces in your hands to make the right choices. It is also a way for us to add the sense of touch to the visual perception [of a design]. Designers often create a design just as we describe it to them, but after seeing it for real, we notice that we need to change something. In the long run, 3D printing processes have a deep consequence on the quality of our products.”