In 2013-2014, three engineers graduates Sai Prasanth, Ajay Yathinda and Prathyusha Kamarajugadda decided to build a company of consumer products that are smart and intelligent and at the same time should be a natural extension of devices that people normally use.
A year later, the team of three launched a company Conzumex and thought of manufacturing a Hybrid Analog Smartwatch which doesn’t require any charging for one whole year, unlike any other digital smart watches.
However, they had little capital to pump into smartwatch manufacturing. So, they decided to take a route of crowdfunding with the first launch of magnetic charger MuConnect.
The MuConnect was a crowd-funded project on Indiegogo, which received the order of 17,000 chargers from more than 100 countries within 45 days of the announcement of the concept. The campaign received overwhelming response and had amassed $245,000 from pre-orders.
“This was a sort of product validation as well through which we also learnt the nuisance of the business,” said Prasanth, CEO and Co-founder, Conzumex.
In April last year, the three co-founders visited China and met various manufacturers and finally closed the deal with Taiwan-based contract manufacturer Weison Technologies.
A few months later, the product manufacturing began and final delivery started in September last year. The entire order delivery was completed in January this year.
“This was the time when we had to make the decision whether we want to continue with the same product or start a new project. They decided to build the smartwatch, which would be smart and can eventually be connected to an internet platform where they can be a part of a whole new ecosystem and contribute in providing awesome services to the consumers,” said Prasath.
Muse: Creating differentiation
The new smartwatch under a brand name “Muse Wearables” will be an amalgamation of smart devices, artificial intelligence and Knowledge from the web.
“Conzumex is undoing all the ideas which were floated before by making a completely new product. It claims that its Analog smartwatch is first of a kind in the world, that is fashionable, intelligent and more immersive than any other regular watches and fitness trackers. It has a breakthrough technology to provide 1 to 1.5 years of battery life,” said Prasanth.
Instead of just providing data to the consumers, the platform is taking a service approach to this platform. It’s providing services related to fitness, food and finance to start with.
The idea was to build the “Internet of You” platform, which will be an amalgamation of smart devices, artificial intelligence and exergaming (exercise and gaming).
Each of these services is provided through different chatbots which are conversational in manner and will offer an effective communication service for the user to execute tasks, input data and to receive insightful information which is gathered from the sensors on the watch, mobile and internet.
Using the chatbot, the platform is able to provide innovative services like the virtual fitness coach that curates a training plan, based on users’ personal activity interests, goals, fitness levels and schedule, while adapting to any change that happens around them, from the weather or even an unscheduled meeting.
The same can be said about the virtual finance coach, which helps users to have well-informed analytics of their expenditures, earnings and savings. Hence, guiding them for financial planning. The chatbots are designed to be proactive, as a result, they are always a part of life to make users have a better lifestyle without being intrusive, which is the company’s main agenda.
“Our platform is unique in terms of delivering different services to the users. It has different conversational chatbots for different services. Smart devices like watch integrates with these services to provide better data and control,” said Prasanth.
He added that while everyone is trying to develop an internet of things platform, he is focusing on an “Internet of You” platform which revolves around the user rather than things. He believes that this approach adds more value to the users.
Conzumex, which raised the first external investment of $450,000 and invested majorly into product and technology development, is planning to launch the new smartwatch on February 1st 2018.
The company plans to sell 20,000 products in the first year of the launch. “We have diversified applications and more smart devices coming in the years to come.”
In the smartwatch space, Fitbit, Fossil, Moto 360, Withings and Apple, among others are some of the many big players.
“Though there is a lot of market competition in this segment, we are trying to create a blue ocean market for itself with technology differentiation. The digital smartwatch market has almost reached a market saturation and analog smartwatches are slowly rolling out from 2016,” observed Prasanth.
Talking about the challenges, he added that supply-chain is one of the biggest challenges in this sector. Building a hardware product is not simple. He is building long-term relationships with the vendors across China and Switzerland.