This App Trains Your Breathing To Help You Reach Peak Performance. Here's How
The Ready For Launch series asks questions of entrepreneurs to get the inside story behind a new startup or product launch.
After years of working in a stressful media job that took a toll on his health, Bradley Dowding-Young decided that he needed to make a change for himself and others. Drawing on his knowledge of mindfulness, sonic design and breathing work, he came up with the idea of starting a wellness startup. Silentmode’s first product is the PowerMask, a sensory deprivation face mask that helps to reduce anxiety and improve health, well-being and performance.
This September, the startup successfully closed a Pre-Series A round led by private angel investors as well as impact group SAVE Earth Fund and Hong Kong-based tech incubator Brinc. With this, it has raised a total of more than US$1 million in funding. That same month, Dowding-Young also announced the launch of Silentmode’s new iOS biofeedback and breathing workout app, Breathonics. Here, we talk to him about the story behind the app and the problems he hopes to solve.
Can you introduce Breathonics in one sentence?
Breathonics is a new form of mental fitness training that combines modern music, guided breathing and science-based soundscapes.
Who is the target consumer?
Our core audience are mainly 25 to 55-year-old individuals working in high-pressure environments. We also work closely with athletes from all around the world. Our target consumer is essentially anyone who is looking to reach their peak performance.
What is your value proposition?
Breathonics packages bite-size five to 15-minute workouts that will help to improve your energy and focus, help you get a power nap on demand or help your mind and body unwind before bed.
What is the size of the potential market?
We're looking at the global health and wellness market, which is said to be worth about US$4.2 trillion.
Who are your investors, and how closely did you work with them through the product development stage?
We were incubated at Brinc and have a varied group of experienced investors, from private individuals to small investment vehicles. One of our largest investors is the impact fund, SAVE Earth Fund.
How long did it take you to get from idea to launch?
It took us three years of iterations before we finally launched the Breathonics app this September.
Tell us about the iterations you went through to get to the final product
We started with a minimum viable product three years ago and closely monitored user feedback and engagement until we arrived at what we believe is the world’s most advanced breathing workout app today. It's classified as a workout app and the only mind and body app we know of that provides real-time biometric feedback.
See also: 5 Easy Breathing Techniques For Instant Calm
What is the biggest obstacle you faced in getting Breathonics to market, and how did you overcome it?
When developing large-scale projects like Breathonics, there are many moving parts—from heavy, cutting-edge coding requirements to never-before-produced content packs. It is difficult to project-manage all these parts, so the biggest challenge was to ensure that we remain focused on our key deliverables. Thankfully, we have a great team that always delivers.
How did you arrive at the final branding for Breathonics?
For us, mental fitness is a measurement of how ready we are, on a daily basis, to reach our peak performance, whether it's nailing a presentation or climbing Mount Everest. Everything we do is powered by our breath, but we don’t necessarily realise this. The lung logo that we've chosen for Breathonics represents the power within all of us to activate balance when we most need it.
What is the story behind Breathonics’ name and logo?
The name Breathonics came to us during a brainstorm session with our supply chain manager a while ago. We wanted something that was less esoteric and more focused on the bio-mechanics of breathing. The lung logo was a natural extension of that concept.
What are your goals for the brand for the next 12 months?
Our goal is to deliver on our promise of creating a brand-new genre of wellness training for people who are struggling to meditate or mentally "switch off" [after work]. We have big plans for our Series A funding round next year and plan to hit 100,000 users in the next 12 months.