After more than two years of silence, BSX has announced the hydration tracking LVL was acquired by Gideon Health. Whats more, their backers have been offered a full refund on their Kickstarter pledge.
Essential reading: Top fitness trackers and health gadgets
We have not written about the hydration tracking wearable LVL since 2017. And for good reason. The outfit behind it disappeared from the face of the earth. No updates to its 7,500+ backers on Kickstarter in more than a year, most of which probably assumed they could kiss their money good-bye.
BSX Athletics, an Austin-based wearable sensor company had raised a whopping $1.2 million on Kickstarter to develop the product back in 2016. With a delivery date set for June 2017, what followed were delays and unresponsiveness to comments posted by backers of the project.
The last notable news came in August 2017, when the outfit announced a $6.75 million Series A financing round led by the Samsung Catalyst Fund. While additional money and support from Samsung added credibility to the project, many expressed dismay at further delays.
The wearable is supposed to be the first of its kind. According to the Kickstarter page, it uses red light technology to measure hydration levels and grab accurate heart rate readings. This technology penetrates 10 times deeper into your body than the green lights commonly found in fitness trackers.
Like many other activity devices, LVL was also supposed to track your activity (steps, distance, floors climbed), calories, sleep, mood and heart rate for a complete picture of your health. So a complete package. In theory…
But what followed were two years of complete silence, until now that is. We finally have a new development, and a pretty significant one as far as the LVL Kickstarter backers are concerned.
They were informed by CEO Dustin Freckleton that LVL was acquired by a “stealth-mode healthcare company” called Gideon Health. We’ve never heard of the company but, according to the post the outfit “uses AI, biometrics, and clinical sciences to measure brain and body wellbeing 24/7”.
BSX says they’ve spent the last two years re-designing the hydration tracking wearable to make it a better fit for mass production. Unfortunately they ran out of funding as the Kickstarter cash and additional external financing dried up.
Gideon’s acquisition will supposedly enable LVL Technologies “to build and deliver 10x” what they thought was possible. Unfortunately the post does not offer any specifics about the amount invested or wearable that is being delivered. The really good news, though, comes next.
The Gideon team has offered LVL Kickstarter backers two options to choose from. By filling a survey they can opt for a full refund, or a free priority delivery of the new device that is being built. Judging from the comments on the Kickstarter page, we would be surprised if many of the 7,500+ backers opt for the latter. For good reason.
Nevertheless, this does inject some hope that one day (hopefully in the not-too-distant future), we might actually see the first hydration tracking wearable. When and if this happens, it will be an industry changing event. We certainly hope BSX finally delivers on their vision.
So let’s give them the benefit of the doubt. They did not do the right thing by leaving their backers hanging for so long, but at least Gideon Health is trying to set things straight by offering the full refund.
Like this article? Subscribe to our monthly newsletter and never miss out!