Emvio is a new smart watch to reduce stress

There’s a new smart watch in town that if all goes well, will be available soon. Nope, this isn’t another post about the Apple Watch: you won’t be texting or drawing pictures on the Emvio. Instead, it’s focused on stress prevention, and the company behind it is looking for a little help to bring it to market. Biomedical start­up Darta Systems has just launched a Kickstarter for the watch, looking to raise $250,000 Canadian.

Their research shows that 80% of people experience the physical effects of stress, from headaches to muscle tension, and 48% have trouble sleeping. A worrying 33% say they’re completely stressed out. This particular smart watch aims to track people’s stress levels over time and also help them reduce it. Emvio measures heart rate variability to calculate its wearer’s level of stress on a scale from 1-10, alerting them when it’s high so that they can take action (i.e. relax) and over time, learn to break the cycle of stress before it builds to apocalyptic levels. It can also track activity levels and calories burned.

CEO and co­founder Valery Kuryshev says, ‘One key to combatting stress is to pay attention to the physical signs. But it’s difficult to do while you’re in emotional turmoil. Stress tracking tools like our Emvio make this awareness possible. Being mindful of your stress reactions in the heat of the moment goes a long way to boosting productivity, work satisfaction, and your relationships.’

Darta wants to turn their working prototype into a product, and given the smash hit success of the Pebble, crowdfunding could be the way to do it. The downside is that the functionality may be too limited now that we’ve seen everything the Apple Watch can do. Then again, Emvio’s more of a bargain and provides health tracking basics you’ll probably use. And it looks good, too – maybe my favourite smart watch design so far, with chrome or coloured bands for men and women as well as a unisex range.

Early bird backers can get in on the action for $167 Canadian or $129 U.S plus shipping (so around £98 total). If the campaign’s successful, they’ll be sending them out in November, so you can be cool as a cucumber come Christmas.

Diane Shipley