ShapeScale launches pre-orders for their fitness-minded 3D body scanner

When you hop on a bathroom scale, all you get is one number describing the weight of your entire body. That number doesn’t account for muscle, but rallies you behind the goal of dropping that number lower and lower.

ShapeScale utilizes 3D body scans to create a map of where you’re gaining and losing weight/muscle on your body. The scale utilizes a mechanical arm and depth sensor to create a 3D map of your body and is able to track change over time with heat maps as you seek to get in shape.

The Y Combinator-backed company, which launched its product at TechCrunch Startup Battlefield, is starting pre-orders today as it hopes to get a better sense of the market for its product before entering production and delivering devices next year. Users can reserve a ShapeScale by plopping down $99 on the device, which will cost a total of $499 for pre-orderers.

The battery-powered device definitely takes up more space than a conventional bathroom scale, thanks to the robotic metal arm, but it does preserve a digital copy of your physical form, so that’s a bit understandable.

I had a chance to demo an early version of the device and while the visual fidelity of the images definitely isn’t quite as high as the press materials make it out to be, the tone of muscles is crisp and (in my case) flabbiness is captured sufficiently, as well — for better or worse.