CES 2012: World's First Internet-Connected Baby Scale Debuts

 @redletterdave
on January 10 2012 4:51 PM

(LAS VEGAS) - At the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), French design company Withings debuted the first-ever Internet-connected baby and toddler scale, which seeks to help families keep track of their children's growth to give parents a deeper understanding of their development.

You obviously want to monitor the health of your newborns, said Cedric Hutchings, co-founder and CEO of Withings. You want to first understand the measurements, and the baby scale gives you contextual information to know where these measures standregarding recommended value for your child of that age. Then, you can share this information with your doctor or pediatrician so you can get advice on the data.

Withing's Baby Scale records the weight of the child, but you can also update the height of the child yourself directly on the device too. The scale uses Wi-Fi and Smart Bluetooth 4.0 to automatically and instantly transmit the information to any iOS device (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch), Android smartphone, or any computer with Internet capability via a secure website. The baby scale, which uses a cradle to hold the baby, can be easily configured into a toddler standing scale by simply removing the basket. The scale is smart enough to know that it's in the toddler configuration when the basket is removed, which inverts the screen so toddlers can read their weight as they stand on it.

Withing's Baby Scale will go on sale in Q2 2012, and while the price isn't yet set, Hutchings says it will most likely retail at $150. The iOS and Android applications will be free.

You want to monitor the child's growth for the few first months very precisely, Hutchings said. But it's also very important in the first two or three years to get an understanding on how your child is doing against recommended values.

Withings already has a sucessful adult scale, and the baby scale data can be added to their parents' accounts so the whole family can keep track of their weight and height measurements together.

Our idea is not to make the product more complex but more simple, Hutchings said. Not having too much information in the products itself, but [sending] the measurements to the right devices where you can have much more information.

The scale lights up when you turn it on, and you can zero the scale just like any other scale so you can add cloth or another basket to keep the baby comfortable while on the device. The scale instantly takes the measurements and displays them on the scale's screen, but it also automatically transmits the information to other devices via the cloud.

That's the beauty of having a cloud enabled device, Hutchings said. It does not depend on data storage capacity of the device itself. It's unlimited, so there's no problem with storing a lifetime of measurements.

Withing's baby scale app instantly notifies you via text message when it's being used. The app itself gives the entire history of the baby's weight and height in a colorful display.

The baby and toddler scale have a maximum weight of 35 kilograms, or 77 pounds. At that point, the growing child can switch to a normal Withings adult scale and still keep their information from the baby scale.

Withing's smart baby and toddler scale is just one of many products at CES 2012 to help parents stay informed and healthy. We'll update you with more health news throughout the day.

The video below shows off Withing's baby scale, starting at 1:21.

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