Breathalyzer Blog

BACtrack Vio Revolutionizes the Breathalyzer Construct

posted by | 10 July 2014

NPR published a great story this week about how keychain breathalyzers, and BACtrack Vio in particular, can positively affect people's drinking behaviors. By using a tool like the Vio, drinkers can monitor their blood alcohol content safely and effectively. And being so small and convenient, there's no reason not to use it on the go.

"The quantified self movement has turned monitoring steps, sleep and other activities with technology into a self-improvement pastime. Could the next frontier be alcohol consumption? It turns out that the industry that makes blood-alcohol testing devices has been trying to turn us into quantified drinkers for years. And new products on the market are making monitoring even easier by linking it to your smartphone," they say. 

NPR interviewed BACtrack President and Founder, Keith Nothacker for the article.

"Previously there was a stigma with alcohol testing, and we've been fighting that stigma," says Nothacker, who started the company in 2001 as a college senior, and is now based in San Francisco. "We want people to talk about their BAC and not be embarrassed."

To prove the efficacy of using a keychain breathalyzer like the Vio, NPR also spoke with a public health researcher familiar with the breathalyzer technology. "'The keychain breathalyzer allows people to find out how much they've had to drink objectively. And they can get a pretty good sense of whether it's a good idea to drive,' Michael McDonell, an associate professor in the department of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Washington, tells The Salt. 'In study after study, we see that just objectively tracking your use of [a substance] will reduce your use.'"

NPR also commented on the new Guess Your BAC feature in the BACtrack app. After using the app for a time, the reporters found they "were able to more accurately guess our BAC, which the Vio asks you to do before every measurement."

In the end, they gave the Vio high marks.

"All in all, though, a key chain blood-alcohol reader is a handy tool to have around. And we can easily imagine a future where people sign their texts and emails with their BAC: 'This email was composed at BAC .06.'"

Read the full article here.

1 Comment

above, I use Twitter and Facebook because I must. They are usufel tools that most people have been convinced are way cool. The true value of so-called social media is, in fact, as a tool for business and promotion. All the millions of look at what I had for breakfast, look a where I am or (and this, was believe it or not, the Facebook post several months ago which finally awakened me and it was yours), look at this gas station sign which shows you how little I paid for gas today blather merely fills in the empty space between the self-serving stuff.I have not embraced either program except as a tool. Let me put it another way: when I saw today that your original post had not been updated, my first inclination was to post a comment similar to what I posted on the blog above. Then I thought, why in the world would I do that? I have a venue to express my thoughts, one which thousands of people visit every day to see what I have to say. Why should I ignore that and instead express myself in a vast, unfocused environment where whatever I say is just part of the ever-changing background noise no matter how many people read it? Whatever would be the value or purpose in that?I know I am swimming against the tide.


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