Health IT, Startups

Glow launches app to track infant development, unveils monetization strategy

Glow Baby is part of a broader trend of apps helping new parents track infant health and development.

home_sampleIn the increasingly busy field of digital health applications for women’s reproductive health, startups are striving to develop ways to set themselves apart. Glow’s latest app moves beyond fertility tracking and pregnancy to child development and providing content to help new parents know what to expect.

In an interview with Jennifer Tye, who heads up marketing at Glow, she also offered a preview of a monetization strategy for its pregnancy app Glow Nurture. It will provide access to premium services for a monthly subscription fee and that’s  set to debut next month. It’s an influential move that speaks to a broader trend of how these companies can add sources of revenue and see just how loyal their customer base is.

Glow Baby includes tracking functions that collect data on feedings, sleep, diaper changes and what they produce along with height and weight. Parents can elect to share that information with a babysitter or a physician, for example. It also provides an album to collect and share baby pictures. That’s supplemented with content from Baby 411 author Dr. Ari Brown and a community in which parents can share their experience and concerns.

Tye said the company decided to develop Glow Baby because 80 percent of the users for its fertility tracking app Glow who become pregnant go on to use Glow Nurture.

“The more we can help parents understand and manage caring for a new baby, it can have an immeasurable impact on parents’ emotional and physical health,” Tye said.

The company claims to have 3 million users for its apps, which includes its flagship fertility app Glow and pregnancy monitoring app Glow Nurture. One of the things that users like about this app is the social network that helps users share tips and get questions answered by women who have shared experience.

The premium service expected to launch in March will charge people interested in getting greater access to Glow Nurture app’s social network at a rate of $3.99 per month. That will give them a private messaging tool for the network and comes in response to demand, Tye said. She said 40 percent of Glow Nurture users log on to the app every day and 45 percent are active in the network.

The addition of baby tracking apps like Glow provides a lot more data at an important age for development. IT will be interesting to see what life science companies make of this new data and the kinds of collaborations that will generate given what clinical researchers could do with these data streams.

Photo: Flickr user robscomputer