Vessyl: A Technology That Knows What You Drink
Written by @QuotingBirdie
The Future of Drinking Is Here
2014 seems to be the year where technology and health are beginning to truly collide. Up until this point, technology's main contribution to consumer health has been in the form of a variety of health apps, that have flooded the smartphone marketplace. Most of these apps have either assisted with counting calories, tracking weight, or to provided sample workouts in an attempt to get you into better shape. Looking outside the mobile landscape, the only other major tech that has been developed really are pedometers, which track the amount of steps you take in a day. Now, all of this technology has been cool, but in my opinion, there hasn't been anything truly groundbreaking. Of course that all changed when I learned about Vessyl.
Vessyl is a new technology that isn't slated for release until sometime in 2015, but it's already turning heads. What is this Vessyl that I speak of you might ask? Well it's a smart mug, a really, really, really, really smart mug. According to CEO and Co-Founder Justin Lee, Vessyl is supposed to take calorie counting to the next level, by seamlessly integrating data gathered by the smart cup/mug/container and display it in a meaningful and health conscious way. It's the hope and dream of Justin Lee that people who use Vessyl will then take this information and apply it to their everyday life. Making the information they obtain from their personal drinking habits useful in possibly changing/altering their decisions about what they put into their body. In other words, the creators are betting that this mug will make us healthier by showing us all the dangerous ingredients that we drink daily.
It truly is a noble goal for the world's first smart drinking container, but can Vessyl live up to the very hype that it has generated? Below is an in-depth review of the Vessyl and what we know about it so far.
Perhaps what I love the most about the Vessyl is the design. Mark One, the company behind this intelligent drinking apparatus, has come out with a beautiful, modern, and sleek piece of technology that just looks right. Now you might be saying to yourself, "Well of course it looks right, it's just a mug". To which I would respond, "Well designs for smart watches and glasses are suppose to look elegant/cool/sleek, but they don't". Today's smart watches still look relatively dorky with their bulky square interface and google glass is just as ridiculous looking. Don't just take my word for it, just listen to correspondent Jason Jones, from The Daily Show, take on the controversial Google Glass.
Beyond the initial first impressions, the Vessyl appears to also be somewhat "customizable". When released, it will be available in three colors: Black, Mocha and White. While the container itself is limited the true "customizable" part of it will be the lid. Mark One is going to be coming up with several different colors for people to top their Vessyl's with. How unique these lids are is still up for debate. From what I've been able to gleam from their website, Vessyl will mostly be offering solid colored lids, but I guess there is a chance for patterns to be implemented here as well. Where or not this is a huge selling point with the public will remain to be seen. In the meantime though, it's nice to imagine that not every Vessyl will be the same.
App design for the Vessyl also seems to shine here and help it rather than hinder it. Although not necessary for using the Vessyl, the smartphone/desktop app is going to be a big part of whether or not this technology succeeds with consumers. If it fails to deliver automatic results of important data like calories, sugar, and caffeine, users are not going to enjoy it. Especially since there are already a lot of other manual calorie counter apps out there for both iOS and Android. However, from what I can tell so far, Vessyl will deliver in this area and it seems that tracking what you drink will be incredibly easy. Hopefully when both are released in 2015 they will work without too many problems.
The last and very important question that everyone will be asking is how the design affects drinking. Lucky for us, drinking from the Vessyl looks like any typical experience you would have from sipping or drinking from a normal mug. It appears like it will have a good grip and will contain any liquids you choose to put in it. In fact, the only major difference between Vessyl and your typical mug, is that when you tilt your Vessyl towards you, it will display some very useful and cool information about your beverage. Take that dumb mugs!
Do you think Vessyl will be a crucial piece of health technology?
Although we only have a video to go off of at this point, Vessyl's apparent ability to identify and track anything you drink throughout the day is flat out impressive. Just imagine starting off the morning with a cup of coffee, followed by orange juice at lunch, and perhaps an energy drink in the evening, only to then be alerted by your smart mug that you've gone over your recommend calorie/sugar levels that you set for yourself... That's incredibly powerful!
Along with Vessyl's ability to count calories, sugar and caffeine, Vessyl is also attempting to integrate a feature that makes it even more valuable. That feature is a standalone hydration system called Pryme. Pryme sets out to estimate each individual's hydration needs and essentially encourages users to then drink that amount every day. That would be insane to have in a drinking apparatus because everyone always questions how much water they should drink. If Mark One is able to integrate Pryme right, it could be a game changer and could help in making the community of Vessyl drinkers healthier as a whole. To me, this feature will be worth the cost of the Vessyl alone.
Moving on from the hardware to the software, Vessyl is already appearing to be pretty open. Its developers have already said that there will be programs for Vessyl to sync with on PC, OSX, and Linux platforms and they're working with both major mobile operating systems, iOS and Android. With a planned and polished design to be across all these different platforms, it should also be easy to upload data with whatever tech you have available. Are you on a PC and want to synch your calorie count? No problem. Need to transfer your stats from a Mac to your Android phone? Shouldn't be an issue. All in all, it will be incredibly nice to have all this availability when the Vessyl comes out.
Other important things to consider with the Vessyl are its batter and charging station. With an estimated battery life of 5-7 days, it appears it won't be too much of a hassle to charge the smart container. Vessyl will also feature wireless charging dock and so it won't have any annoying ports that will grace the mug. That's a good thing too because the less time your worrying about battery life, the more time you can devote to drinking the things you really want to drink in life.
Long Term Goals
The Vessyl already seems like a great addition to the tech world and the Mark One is promising to continue the trend with updates and improvements. One feature already being brought up by the team, is to identify contaminates that may be in a drink, effectively warning them that it would not be safe for consumption. Although this feature might not make it into the first Vessyl, their does appear to be talks that it will happen in future models.
The consumer health tech world is an emerging market. A market where companies like Apple and Google are going to change the way we view and manage our health. So you can be sure that companies like the Mark One will be riding alongside them waiting to make products that will continue to improve our lives everyday.
Summing It All Up
Vessyl is one of many technologies that will be vying for our attention in the near future. With their sight set on providing you useful information for you to keep healthy, you can make a safe bet that Vessyl will be one piece of valuable tech to own.
As of writing this, Mark One will be releasing the Vessyl sometime in 2015 for the price of $199. However, if you know you want this amazing new innovation, you can grab it here for a heavily discounted price of only $99. Just a quick warning though, you'll have to buy it now because this 50% off price only lasts until the end of the summer.
$99 Summer Pre-order
$199 Upon Release