Basis Science has raised some additional money for its Basis health tracker, a novel wristwatch that keeps track of health stats such as your heart rate and your sleep time.
The San Francisco company added $11.75 million in additional funding to its $23 million Series B financing. The investment includes money from Intel Capital, iNovia Capital, Dolby Family Trust, Stanford University, and Peninsula-KCG. Existing investors Mayfield Fund, DCM, and Norwest Venture Partners also participated. The funding shows the wearable technology market could be taking off.
Basis also appointed mobile veteran Ethan Fassett as its vice president of product. The money and extra help will better enable Basis to continue its job of tracking billions of heartbeats each week, said Jef Holove, the chief executive of Basis, in an interview with VentureBeat. Basis will use the money to boost its infrastructure and supply chain to meet demand and provide more support for its backend services. Once that is in place, Basis can expand its sales operations to get more devices in the market.
Fassett was most recently an entrepreneur in residence at Trinity Ventures. He was also senior vice president of product for Gree International and was an executive producer at social gaming firm Playdom. His job is to make the Basis system more intelligent through an enhanced understanding of user behavior patterns and intention.
According to IMS Research, the wearables market is poised to grow from 14 million devices shipped in 2011 to as many as 171 million shipped by 2016.
“Wearable computing enables a data-driven approach to managing health care and fitness,” said Arvind Sodhani, the president of Intel Capital and Intel’s executive vice president. “By collecting heart rate [and] skin and ambient temperature data along with movement tracking, the Basis multisensor band opens up opportunities for data analytics driving deeper insights into health and personal behavior.”
“Intel see the future of wearables and they are investing a lot in their own technology,” Holove said. “They also want to see the right product and play a role in its future.”
The Basis band is now available for $199. The Basis Health Tracker measures your heart rate, steps taken during the day, and calories burned. It can measure your sweat, and it can draw conclusions based on that data. It can tell, for instance, how many hours you are sleeping. Once you upload that data to your mobile device or the web, you can then use the Basis cloud service to get advice on health improvements.
Basis currently uses a processor from Texas Instruments. Over time, Basis will likely need more processing power at the same level of power consumption as it uses today. It balances the performance in the device with the processing it does in the cloud.
The company has 50 employees and it has raised $32 million to date.