Drink up! Hug tracks your hydration, tells you when to hit the (water) bottle

There’s always that one person at work or in class that lugs a gigantic water bottle around with them everywhere they go. In response to the obvious question of why on Earth they carry that thing around all day, this person will typically explain that nobody drinks enough water and it’s actually really, really, really bad for you to be so thirsty.

There are plenty of apps out there that will remind you to drink more water, but not many that can actually track how much you have drunk so far. Enter Caktus, a water-obsessed start up with an ironic name. Caktus just introduced a new Kickstarter campaign for a water-drinking-tracking sensor called The Hug.

The Hug is essentially a bracelet for your water bottle, which fits around the bottle and measures how much you’ve drunk. That info is then sent via Bluetooth to an app on your iPhone, which keeps tabs on how much you’ve had and sends you push notifications, reminding you to drink more if you’ve yet to reach your daily goals.

Hug water sensor

The app also tailors its suggestions based on your age, gender, weight, and even the temperature in your area to make sure its recommendations are accurate. It learns your drinking habits to send you notifications at times that make sense.

Additionally, the app will keep track of your hydration history, so you can track your progress. It syncs up with FitBit, RunKeeper, and other fitness apps, as well, so as to adjust the amount of water you need to drink based on your physical activity. The company is working on an API for the Hug, in hopes that other fitness apps join the fold soon.

Unfortunately, Hug is only available for iOS at the moment.

The Hug water sensor features accelerometers to determine how much you’re drinking, based on your water bottle’s movements. The company says that it has developed an algorithm, which determines whether you’re taking a drink or simply swinging your water bottle around as you gesture broadly or run to the subway. The Hug sends data directly to your the app on your iPhone, so you don’t have to enter any info.

The Hug is actually made of two separate parts: the band and the sensor module. The sensor module detaches from the center whenever you need to charge it, which you can do with a Micro USB. The company says that Hug should fit most bottles, regardless of the material. However, the Hug will work best with bottles that have a diameter of 2.16-3.14 inches (55-80 millimeters) and a  volume of 13 to 25 fl oz (400-750 millilitres).

Early backers of the Kickstarter project can get a Hug for $60 or more, which Caktus says is much cheaper than it anticipates the retail version will be. Early birds can get the Hug as soon as October, but others will have to wait until March, the company estimates.

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