The Withings Body Scan scale can measure the composition of different parts of your body


As for your weight, Withings claims that the Body Scan is accurate to 50 grams or double the previous model, but that’s just the start of showing off your body makeup. It uses multi-frequency bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) to measure the percentage of body fat and water, visceral fat, muscle and bone mass, and extracellular and intracellular water. It can even provide measurements for individual body parts, including your torso, arms and legs. All of that allows you to recognize things used by health experts and sports professionals, such as dangerously localized fat or muscle imbalance, Withings said.

In collaboration with a French company called Impeto Medical, Withings also developed a function to assess nerve activity. It can monitor the activity of the sweat gland in the feet (sudomotor function) using a small direct current through the electrodes in the plate. Impaired function in that regard can show signs of degeneration of small nerve fibers, something that can be corrected with regular activity and a healthy diet.

“It’s a useful feature because there are many chronic health problems, such as obesity, associated with poor nerve function,” Letombe told me. “Impeto makes devices used by neurologists and other doctors that can cost upwards of $10,000, and the Body Scan is a consumer product that does that again every time you weigh yourself.” At the same time, Withings can collect nerve activity data from millions of users that could be useful for medical research and patient care.

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In addition to the scale, Withings is also (yep) introducing a subscription service, the price of which has yet to be announced. It will “allow users to connect with medical specialists for advice and consultation, while providing clinical teams with data in real time,” Withings said. It also offers personalized health plans, videos and more on topics like diet, sleep, exercise and stress management to help users achieve their health goals.

With the Body Scan, Withings offers consumers one of the more advanced health, sports and medical devices for home use at a price. It is expected to cost $300 when it arrives in the US and Europe in the second half of 2022 after FDA approval, or $100 more than the launch price of the Body Scan. That includes three free months of subscription service, but it’s still a big chunk of change for a scale.

Much will depend on whether it delivers all of its promised features with reasonable accuracy and whether it receives its FDA approval in a timely manner. That’s not necessarily a given, as Withings took more than a year to get its ScanWatch approved by the FDA after it was first released. The company also had issues with its Pulse Wave Velocity (PVW) heart health feature, pulling it back in some regions due to regulatory concerns.

Given all that, it’s quite daring for Withings to introduce a scale with even more advanced medical and health functionality. “We think we can improve a user’s health this way, not by asking for an extra effort, but by providing more targeted information about a product they use every day,” Letombe says.

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