Tempo has officially launched its AI-powered at-home fitness concept, backed by $17.5m in investment, joining a swathe of startups competing within the rapidly growing digital fitness category.
With the global digital fitness market expected to reach an estimated $27.4 billion by 2022, brands such as Mirror, Tonal, Hydrow and FightCamp are all pinning their hopes on becoming ‘the next Peloton’ of the at-home fitness revolution. However, Tempo believes it has the edge as the first at-home weight training solution that is able to count reps and calories burned, recommend weights and offer real-time feedback.
The startup, formally known as Pivot, says it’s building the technology needed to bridge the gap between user and trainer, to deliver the same hands-on guidance provided by an in-person experience — something co-founder Moawia Eldeeb believes its rivals are yet to offer.
“Every single product in the market took a piece of equipment out of a gym and slapped a screen on it,” Eldeeb told TechCrunch. “You need to be able to see a user to actually be able to give them guidance so they can work out safely. We wanted to build a fitness experience from the ground up with training and form feedback at the core of it,” he added.
To achieve this, the company has already captured propriety data from over 1 million 3D tagged workouts, which it argues will enable its software and machine learning technology to be hyper-accurate in tracking and providing real-time feedback. It’s this technology, alongside built-in sensors which track the user’s form in real-time, that has piqued the interest of venture capital firm DCM — the lead on Tempo’s Series A funding round.
“Pivot’s technology combines world-class machine learning, software and hardware to create an at-home strength training and fitness experience comparable to what Peloton has achieved for the at-home spin experience,” commented Kyle Lui, Partner at venture capital firm DCM, following the raise.
“Its product differentiation was clear to me the first time I tried it, and I’m incredibly excited for the company’s upcoming launch,” he added.
Despite distancing itself from its competitors, Tempo does share one major similarity — its price. At $1,995 for the piece of equipment alone, plus a monthly content subscription fee of $39, it’s not targeting a mainstream audience. However, that doesn’t appear to have harmed Peloton’s growth — the at-home cycling phenomenon recorded revenue of $719.2 million in 2019, up from $348.6 million in 2018 and $183.5 million in 2017, demonstrating that consumers are willing to pay a premium.
The higher price points of many of the category’s biggest players haven’t stunted the flow of money into the market either, with more than a billion dollars in VC funding flowing into the sector since it first emerged.
And, as consumer thirst for at-home fitness experiences intensifies, investors will no doubt be looking for the next differentiated concept that can elevate the experience once again.