The app may be killing the workout video star.
Fitstar, a Google Ventures-backed company that’s trying to make personalized fitness a reality on tablets, just released an overhauled tablet app and is bringing their work to a much larger audience through a new iPhone version.
Earlier this year, the company teamed up with NFL Atlanta Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez to create a workout app with personalized routines. These programs didn’t need any specialized equipment and could be done inside someone’s home or on the road.
Now that they’ve gotten some preliminary data and some promising stats on sign-ups, with a 10 percent conversion to paid subscriptions, they’ve made some touch-ups. Those include a new design for iOS 7, and more explanations and animations so that users can pick up moves easily.
In the new version of Fitstar, there’s now an opening video. Then users go right into a fitness test, where they answer some personal questions that help the app come up with a personalized routine.
If they stay as free users, they get access to a basic routine and a limited number of workouts per week. After that, there are four paid programs including the Daily Dose, which is a quick workout every day; Get Lean, which is a cardio-focused workout for weight loss; the introductory Get Moving program, and the Get Strong program.
Fitstar changed its pricing options, because they found that users often wanted to switch up their programs in the middle. Now there’s a one-year pass that is $49.99 a year that lets users traverse all the different programs. The pricing options are simplified with two choices of $4.99 a month or the annual subscription.
Now that they’ve nailed the numbers better, CEO Mike Maser said that Fitstar can start to spend on marketing in a ROI positive way.
“We didn’t know whether we were going to be subject to app store economics. Were users only going to be willing to pay $2?” he said. “We were really happy to see that that’s not how things have gone. When we came out with a $30 version [the original annual pricing], it became our #1 seller.”
He added that north of 10 percent of users are converting to paid subscriptions, which is much higher than the standard 2 percent rate or so that you see in the gaming world.
The company is also racking up partnerships with activity trackers like Jawbone, so that user activity data can be fed back into these platforms. And they’ve added social features like the ability to challenge a friend to an immediate workout.
While Fitstar has one app at the current moment, expect more in the pipeline that might target other types of workouts like Pilates and yoga. The reason the company hasn’t jumped to it yet is because they needed to fine-tune the personalization algorithms and the business model.
“The technology we’ve developed can be applied to anything from yoga to running,” Maser said.
The company has raised at least $4 million in venture funding from Google Ventures, Trinity Ventures and Floodgate.