360° Coverage : Entrepreneurs of Austin: Atlas Wearables

2 Updates
Entrepreneurs of Austin: Atlas Wearables
Photo Credit: Forbes Business

Entrepreneurs of Austin: Atlas Wearables

Feb 19 2014, 12:29pm CST | by

This begins a new series by Gay Gaddis entitled “Entrepreneurs of Austin.”  The city of Austin is booming with big business, but has remained small in feel due to its strong entrepreneurial...

Filed under: news

 
 
 

30 weeks ago

Entrepreneurs of Austin: Atlas Wearables

Feb 19 2014, 12:29pm CST | by

This begins a new series by Gay Gaddis entitled “Entrepreneurs of Austin2014-02-18T17:31">.” 
The city of Austin is booming with big business, but has remained small in feel due to its strong entrepreneurial character that different visionaries have brought to the city. As an entrepreneur from Austin who started her business in 1989, Gay will be highlighting the intriguing successes that can be found in the city today. 

Peter Li, Founder of Atlas Wearables, sat down with me to discuss his team’s recent success with raising over $470,000 via crowdfunding on Indiegogo and what it is like to be an entrepreneur in the fast-growing wearables industry.

Gay Gaddis: Peter, give me some background on you, your team and how Atlas came about.

Peter Li: I actually grew up in North Boston with Michael Kasparian and then I met Alex Hsieh at Johns Hopkins University where I went to undergrad and graduate school. While Michael was at Boston University getting a degree in electrical engineering and later working at Phillips Health Care, I was at Johns Hopkins working with tissue engineering and getting my graduate degree in biomedical engineering. Things seemed to come together at the right time. It also helped that we all saw the same problem. Writing down our workouts to keep track wasn’t working for us and we wanted to find a solution.  Alex swam at Johns Hopkins, I would work out 5 to 6 times a week and Michael did athletics too, so it was a pretty consistent frustration. We put our heads together and Atlas Wearables was born.

GG: How does Atlas stand out in the sea of wearables?

PL: Wearables are huge right now. Jawbone, Fitbit, etc. have really created product awareness, but from a health and fitness perspective, they are limited. For people who log workouts, they aren’t valuable enough. Where we shine through is at the gym, where we can dive deeper into the data. Atlas reads on an –x, -y, and –z axis so it leads to more motivation to get off of the couch. It not only follows your workout, but it will also lead you through a workout if you don’t have one. I also love that gym-lovers can still compete with others through apps like Map M yFitness, and Fitocracy. It really helps that people can purchase an Atlas, but not feel pressured to change the applications they already know how to use.

How has crowdfunding impacted your experience?

PL: It’s great because you can share your ideas and reveal the concepts before having something, which causes for some humility in the process, but the benefit is to be able to test traction and build a connection before the product is built. Our Indiegogo campaign was just extended to target us at the half million mark. It will allow us to create 50-100 meter waterproofing so we are interested to see the responses in demand. We can already tell people want our product, but now the question is what do they really want it to do?

Did you expect to become an entrepreneur when you were in school? Biomedical engineering into entrepreneurship doesn’t seem like a typical path.

PL: No, not really. After being in research, I wanted a change of work environment. I loved my studies, but it took so long to see any results. Once I talked to Michael and we saw the difference in metrics between general pushups and triangle pushups (6 to 12 inch difference) on a wrist sensor, I was sold. The awesome thing about Atlas is that it took us two years since first starting work to get something real out for use.

What’s the hardest thing about being an entrepreneur?

PL: The uncertainty is always hard and emerging tech will always be expensive. There are a lot of tiny costs that go into the development. Whatever you guess you think you will need in time and money, add 50-100% more and you are probably hitting the target. [Being an entrepreneur] also forces you to have to create your own habits. If you have a normal job, there is structure. The perk is that you have your own choices, but that can also be a hazard in disguise.

What advice do you have for emerging entrepreneurs?

PL: Three things,

Be receptive to feedback. It isn’t always easy, but you have to be comfortable with what your vision and passions are, but also be willing to realize that other people may not have the same visions.

Immerse yourself with the kind of people that you believe can make a product successful. The people you recruit have to know what to do before you make your product, but they also have to be adaptive. For example, Alex is software design, but he has had to put on multiple different hats. Flexibility and having the same passion is key – someone told me when I first started that if there is poison in the well, it will spread everywhere.  As an entrepreneur, that foundation of support is necessary.

Try things: Before Atlas, I founded Froots & Co. at Johns Hopkins. It is like Netflix, but for fruits. My mom always complained about me not eating enough fruit, but I never had the time to consistently purchase produce. Instead of continuing to have the “missing link”, I created a solution – Froots & Co.We would deliver fresh fruit to customers every week. From that experience, I learned a lot from logistics and operations. It also helped me realize that finding things I know and love motivate me and makes work not feel like work.

Source: Forbes Business

 
Update
2

2 weeks ago

Khazanah throws MAS RM6b lifeline

Aug 29 2014 5:01pm CDT | Source: Business Times Singapore

August 30, 2014 1:15 AMKHAZANAH Nasional will inject RM6 billion (SS$2.4 billion) over three years to resuscitate loss-making Malaysia Airlines (MAS) under a recovery plan that includes even an Act of Parliament. Other key moves are migrating its operations, assets and liabilities to a new company (NewCo) and sla ...
Source: Business Times Singapore   Full article at: Business Times Singapore
 

 
Update
1

3 weeks ago

MAS posts loss of RM307m for Q2

Aug 28 2014 5:00pm CDT | Source: Business Times Singapore

August 29, 2014 1:13 AMMALAYSIA Airlines (MAS) registered a loss of RM307 million (S$122 million) for the second quarter to end-June, but warned of worse to come in the second half when the "full financial impact of the double trage ...
Source: Business Times Singapore   Full article at: Business Times Singapore
 

 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Childless couples too enjoy family meals
New York, Sep 19 (IANS) Couples without kids in the house are just as likely as adults living with young children or adolescents to eat family meals at home on most days of the week, says a US-based study.
 
 
Now, explore Egyptian pyramids from home
London, Sep 19 (IANS) If you are yet to experience the wonders of the ancient world still surviving in Egypt, you can now turn into a virtual visitor -- thanks to Google Street View -- and explore the pyramids from the comforts of your home.
 
 
Smoking causes urological diseases
Vienna, Sep 19 (IANS) Smoking leads to a number of urological diseases, experts said.
 
 
'Angelina Effect' makes more women test for breast cancer
Islamabad, Sep 19 (IANS) At least three militants were killed Friday in a remote-controlled blast in Pakistan.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

India, Nepal agree to complete field work in border
Kathmandu, Sep 19 (IANS) Nepal and India have formed two panels to look into the boundary issue for the first time and finalised the terms of reference (ToRs) of the Boundary Working Group (BWG). The first meeting of...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
France launches first airstrikes against IS in Iraq
Paris, Sep 19 (IANS) France's President Francois Hollande said Friday French jets have launched first airstrikes against the Islamic State (IS) militants in Iraq where they seized major towns and threatened the region'...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Fireworks light Incheon sky as Asian Games ceremony begins
Incheon (South Korea), Sep 19 (IANS) A fusillade of fireworks marked the start of the opening ceremony of the 17th Asian Games at the Incheon Asiad Main Stadium here Friday. Fireworks lit up the sky here after a...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
GlaxoSmithKline China hit with record fine
Beijing, Sep 19 (IANS) The China branch of British drug maker GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has been fined three billion yuan ($489 million) for paying bribes. Following Friday's closed-door trial of the GSK China bribery...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Rita Ora desperate to reconcile with Calvin Harris
London, Sep 19 (IANS) Singer Rita Ora is reportedly desperate to reconnect with her ex-boyfriend Calvin Harris following their messy break-up earlier this year. The "RIP" singer has written a letter to her former...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
IS uses chemical weapons against army in Iraq
Baghdad, Sep 19 (IANS) The Islamic State (IS) terrorist group has reportedly launched a chemical attack on Iraqi forces in Saladin province, media reports claimed Friday. The attack took place Wednesday and Thursday...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Rajnath Singh proposes SAARC centre for good governance
Kathmandu, Sep 19 (IANS) Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh Friday proposed setting up a SAARC centre for good governance where officers from all member countries can come together to exchange their experiences....
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Deadpool movie given release date
20th Century Fox and Marvel Studios have announced that the X-Men spin-off 'Deadpool' will be released on February 12, 2016. The character appeared in the 2009 film 'X-Men Origins: Wolverine', with Ryan Reynolds playing...
Read more on Movie Balla
 
Toby Kebbell linked to Ben Hur remake
Toby Kebbell is in early talks to appear in the remake of Ben Hur. According to Variety, the actor- who starred in 'Dawn of the Planet of the Apes' - has already held discussions with MGM and Paramount over the role of...
Read more on Movie Balla
 
Liam Neeson loves fishing
Liam Neeson goes fly fishing to escape the Hollywood lifestyle. The 'Taken' actor - who has sons Michael, 19, and Daniel, 18, with late wife Natasha Richardson - tries to take two months off every year to indulge in his...
Read more on Celebrity Balla