Join the club: Human app encourages people to adopt a more active lifestyle (video interview)

Amsterdam and San Francisco-based Human makes one of many apps that helps people adopt a more active, healthier lifestyle. With a focus on design and social, can it make a dent in this crowded space?
Join the club: Human app encourages people to adopt a more active lifestyle (video interview)

When I recently toured Amsterdam to meet with some of its hottest startups and investors, I was fortunate enough to be able to catch up with Paul Veugen in between his frequent travels.

Veugen co-founded a company called Usabilla, which develops tools that enable website owners to connect with visitors and has been growing sales tremendously in the past few years.

But the interview with Veugen, which you can watch above, focused on Human, a startup he's been working on for over 2.5 years now.

Human is a software-only activity tracker that aims to inspire iPhone (and, since recently, Apple Watch) users to adopt a more active and thus healthier lifestyle by prompting them to move at least 30 minutes a day.

Unlike wearable device makers such as Fitbit, Jawbone, Misfit, Withings etc., Human offers only a mobile app, exclusively available for iOS, with no plans to move into physical devices.

human app iphone

Human automatically tracks walks (though it doesn't count steps), bike rides, runs and other activities, and also calculates the estimated number of calories burned with daily activity based on a user's weight and the duration and intensity of an activity.

The app is no doubt beautiful, and the data its users collectively generate (anonymously) across the world has enabled Human to produce some really slick and interesting visualisations. At the same time, you have to wonder if an app that's only available on iOS is going to be able to compete in a market that's increasingly crowded with big companies offering solid hardware+software combos.

Asked about its business model, Veugen said Human is currently encouraging users to form 'clubs' with friends, family and colleagues in order to inspire each other to become more active.

Clubs can be organised around locations or activities, and can be free or paid. Veugen says the business model will ultimately revolve around the end user, and that Human is focused on looking for ways to make users more engaged as well as ways to charge them.

Human has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from both Amsterdam and US-based investors. Watch the video interview above to learn the names and what Veugen thinks about the Amsterdam startup scene and how difficult it is to raise financing at the right terms there.


Featured image credit: screenshot of Human website

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