The SITU Scale is bringing Bluetooth connectivity to food scales, allowing users to weigh their food and instantly see nutritional information via a companion app running on their connected tablet. For people on a diet, this could prove to be quite useful as it allows them to more accurately keep track of their food consumption.
Applications that monitor food consumption are nothing new, with tons available on both the App Store and Google Play. The problem with those apps is that they require the user to keep track of all the data themselves. Even with a scale, the user still has to make the jump from weight to actual nutritional information.
UPGRADE TO NEW ATLAS PLUS
More than 1,200 New Atlas Plus subscribers directly support our journalism, and get access to our premium ad-free site and email newsletter. Join them for just US$19 a year.UPGRADE
SITU aims to fix that by allowing the user to simply input what food they are weighing on the Bluetooth-connected food scales. From there, the app will automatically pull nutritional information such as calories, protein, fiber, and other information you might expect to find printed on the label of pre-made meals. Users are also able to easily get this information from fresh food, allowing for more accurate monitoring of food intake, and as a result, the ability keep on top of weight loss goals.
The iPad application is designed for ease of use with a simple drag-and-drop interface. So, a user would place the food on the paired scale, find the type of food listed in the app, and drag the icon to the scale image. It also has a Current Plate screen that allows users to see the nutritional information for a current meal, and a history section that can be used to keep track of eating habits over time. The beta version of the app definitely looks very functional, and it will be interesting to see how it performs once it's placed in the hands of end users.
As for the SITU scale itself, it can support a total of 11 lb (5 kg), which should be more than sufficient for any meal. It's powered by four AAA batteries, and the creators promise an average battery life of about six months. It uses Bluetooth 4.0 to establish a connection to an iPad. For the time being, the creators are only supporting iPads running iOS 7. They do plan to bring support to iPhone, Android phones and tablets, and Windows tablets in the future, though no time frame has yet been given.
Michael Grothaus, the creator of the SITU scale, is seeking funding on Kickstarter. Backers can pledge £50 (US$83) while the early bird special lasts. From there, it jumps to £70. If all goes well, shipping is expected to start in November 2014.
The Kickstarter pitch video below provides more information on the SITU Smart Food Nutrition Scale and shows it in action.