About this project
DrinkMate - It's Always Got Your BAC!
Be safe and make the right decisions. That's the inspiration behind DrinkMate, a new and convenient way to be responsible while having fun. It's the smallest breathalyzer in the world! Oh yeah, and it plugs into your Android smartphone to display your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC).
How Does It Work?
1) plug DrinkMate into your Android phone
2) follow the app's instruction to blow into DrinkMate
3) BAC results displayed instantly!
How Does It Really Work?
DrinkMate was designed entirely from scratch. We knew that to make a new breakthrough in size reduction, we couldn't have any bias from existing larger designs.
No Internal Battery
- Power is supplied entirely from your Android phone via the micro-USB port.
- Power consumption ranges from 30mA for steady state to 80mA during warm up, which is only 7 seconds. This consumption is negligible for short periods of time on any phone (a Samsung Galaxy S4 battery is 2200 mAh)
What about your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC)?
- We're using a low-cost advanced stability semiconductor-based sensor.
- Our innovative air inlet is designed to direct flow perfectly over the sensor such that readings are precise and repeatable. The inlet also works to slow airflow that is too fast, which allows for a greater range of breath air speed.
- Air outlets are positioned so that alcohol can quickly clear the sensor area once a reading is taken.
- Accuracy is approximately +/- 0.01% BAC at a BAC of 0.02%.
- The sensor's maximum BAC is 0.20% BAC. After that you'd probably need help standing anyway!
- Accuracy was validated using testing and calibration kits from Lifeloc Technologies, the leader in breathalyzer testing and calibration.
Smallest Breathalyzer In the World
- 1.8" long x 0.62" in diameter
- DrinkMate weighs only 0.2 oz. Why so light? No battery! Most of the weight in our portable electronics comes from batteries.
- Held securely in place using our ultra high-quality micro-USB connector
DrinkMate Android App
- DrinkMate sends your BAC data to your Android phone via the micro-USB port.
- After blowing, the BAC calculation takes a fraction of a second thanks to your phone's powerful processor and is immediately displayed.
Why We Need Your Support!
Manufacturing any piece of hardware becomes monumentally less expensive in large quantities. The biggest cost by far is the customized tooling and hardened steel molds needed for injection molding the plastic casing. By taking a large quantity of orders off Kickstater all at once, we're passing the savings on to you!
Guaranteed Compatibility - personally tested by our team
- Samsung Galaxy S3, S4, and S5
- Samsung Galaxy Note 3
- HTC One
- Motorola Moto X
- Motorola Droid MAXX (not the RAZR MAXX unfortunately)
- Nexus 7
- Asus Transformer Prime, Infinity
Beta - phone specifications are compatible
- Google Nexus 5
- LG G3
- Motorola Moto G
- OnePlus One
- Oppo Find 7 and 7A
- Samsung Galaxy Note 4
- Sony Xperia Z1, Z2, and P
- Phone or tablet running Android 3.1 or later with USB host capability
Have a question about a phone or tablet not listed?
Comment or send us a message and we'll figure it out!
Where We're At With the Design
- Hardware: FINISHED! The hardware selection is finalized, works perfectly, has been tested thoroughly, and requires no further design time or cost. Firmware has finalized coding and works perfectly with the DrinkMate app.
- Enclosure: FINISHED! Prototypes were tested using high-fidelity 3D prints from Sculpteo. The mass-produced enclosure will consist of two pieces ultrasonically welded together around our assembled PCB.
- Android app: Ready and adding more features each week. Throughout the campaign and post-campaign manufacturing we'll be working mostly on graphics in the DrinkMate app.
- After months of searching and countless talks with manufacturers, we partnered with a wonderful manufacturer who has 17 years experience with consumer electronics.
- They've advised us throughout the DrinkMate final design process on how to reduce cost and increase reliability through design prior to mass production.
- Assembled PCB samples have been received and work exactly like our initial prototypes. The quality is outstanding.
Meet The Team
Shaun Masavage: Electromechanical Engineer, creator of DrinkMate, hardware design.
Mack Redding: Engineer, physicist, app developer.
Andy Ziegler - Manufacturing & Marketing Consultant, Brand Builders Group
Bob Gould - hardware design adviser
Zach Griffin - video producer
Zack Gross - video production
Eric Stenmark - video production
Scott Jeschke - video production
Sam Braden - graphic designer
Emily Redding - graphic designer
Rachel Couch - photographer
Sculpteo - 3D printing online service
Mahmoud Lababidi - data scientist
Risks and challenges
We are committed to delivering a high quality product on schedule. We will be working closely with our manufacturer to ensure all parts, especially the injection-molded plastic enclosure, meet our quality expectations. We refuse to deliver you anything but the best, so should we feel the need to have a slight delay in order to verify a part's quality, we will let you know immediately and keep you apprised of every step.
Developing hardware for iPhone is much more costly and time consuming than Android development. If an iPhone version simply required a new app, we'd have one available, but unfortunately a massive hardware redesign will be required. We have plans to develop an iPhone version next if the Android version is successfully funded!
We suggest at least a 10 second waiting period between tests. This allows the alcohol from the previous test to either evaporate or leave the sensor. We implemented two controls in the app to ensure this rest period is met. The app has the ability to recognize if DrinkMate has not yet "recovered" from its previous tests based on initial plug-in warm up and stabilization data and will let you know if you need to wait longer. Second, in order to test again we require that you unplug and replug DrinkMate into your phone. This allows for a reiteration of all start-up checks on the app, but also ensures that you physically move DrinkMate to help clear the sensor area of alcohol from the previous test.
No touching! You blow as close as you can to the air inlet on the end of DrinkMate, but there's no need to touch your lips to the plastic.
We're just now trying to get our hands on some Windows phones to do some hands-on testing of the hardware to confirm that DrinkMate will be compatible. We WANT to do this, but can't promise it just yet. We will keep you posted! If our testing proves fruitful, a WP version of DrinkMate would only require a new app, so it's much more feasible than an iPhone version, which would require entirely different hardware as well.
We're incorporating a heavily researched and customized "age" factor into our BAC calculation algorithm. This uses data on the number of DrinkMate tests since purchased (and the amount of alcohol blown during each use) to alter the BAC results according to how "broken in" your particular DrinkMate sensor is. The sensor never goes bad, it just becomes more broken in and, hence, the reason that other breathalyzers need re-calibration to set a new starting or finishing baseline for sensor values. Our goal with DrinkMate is to maintain purchasing-day accuracy levels for at least a year.
Yes! We specifically designed DrinkMate to fit around most slim and moderate fit cases. If you a have a large, heavy-duty case like an OtterBox, though, you might need to remove it prior to use.
You're all set! The DrinkMate app will allow you to set the units of your preference.
Like all breathalyzer's on the market, the recommended wait time after consuming your last drink is between 15 and 20 minutes. Additionally, the recommendation is to not eat or smoke in that time period as well.
This answer is more complicated than you would think. In addition to passively allowing more air to flow through and clear the sensor, the real reason behind unplugging DrinkMate between uses has to do with the protocols we're using to interface DrinkMate with your phone. We've enabled only one-way communication, which means DrinkMate can talk to your phone, but your phone can't tell DrinkMate to do things, like reset. This interface allows much more universal comparability of DrinkMate among various Android platforms and future-proofs it against ongoing phone software and firmware upgrades. It also makes sure DrinkMate works with future Android phones that aren't even on the market yet!
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