Lume, the personal wellness app that allows users to track their mental and emotional health, has announced on their blog that big changes are coming. Lume was developed and released for iOS in 2013. The idea came from four guys with the goal of creating a “Tamagotchi for the 21st century.”
The origin story lies with the desire to use mobile devices for generating empathy. Smartphones are very personal devices that store a person’s digital life. Lume’s founders wanted a way to turn your smartphone into a companion that could ask you about your mood throughout the day. Version 1.0 centered around an intelligence called PIP (Personal Input Pal). At random times throughout the day PIP would ask “How are you feeling today?”
After the first version of Lume was released, most of 2014 was focussed on creating a reliable business plan and finding a way to monetize the product, otherwise it would stall and fall by the wayside. They spent a huge amount of time researching the fitness and self-help markets, and noticed a lack of mood tracking apps. Right now within the app you can measure your mood and energy level on a scale from 1 to 7. As a way to improve the app and pave the way for their biggest update to come, Lume’s developers created Three Pillars that will become the foundation of the app.
Correlating Various Aspects Of Your Health
The first pillar is based on two questions: How do you quantify one’s emotional state using mobile technology? How does this emotional data correlate with data regarding other aspects of your health, such as diet, exercise, and sleep?
Part of Lume’s research, presumably psychological, centered around the realization that many things can affect your mental and emotional states. In particular, exercise has an impact on mental health, as the American Psychological Association notes. “I often recommend exercise for my psychotherapy clients, particularly for those who are anxious or depressed,” says Jennifer Carter, a PhD psychologist working at the Center for Balanced Living in Ohio.
In the beginning Lume wanted to use APIs to gather a user’s dietary and physical data into the app to combine it with their mental/emotional data, like RunKeeper’s Health Graph and MyFitnessPal’s API. In the end though they settled on Apple’s HealthKit, as a simplified way to bring in data from a multitude of sources. They also now support a wider range of apps and devices, including RunKeeper, MyFitnessPal, FitBit and Jawbone.
More Robust Goals
The second pillar is about setting easily reached personalized goals to help change behavior, like weight loss and quitting smoking. By mid-year Lume promises “more in-depth training plans designed to help you go farther and do more.”
Joining other apps and services, Lume plans to support connecting to popular social networks in encourage a friend system and people being able to coach each other. You will also be able to share your progress to Facebook and Twitter.
Lume doesn’t say when this huge update will be released “because competition in this space is heating up and we don’t want to tip our hand just yet.” However they were able to say they plan to release their app on Android by late summer. If you want to keep up with the features they continually add, check out their Status Board.