Breathometer started its crowdfunding from Indiegogo and Shark Tank. The add-on seems promising as it woul measure blood alcohol content (BAC) of its user accurately. However, FTC barred the sales of the Breathometer as they need to first back up its accuracy clams by providing convincing test results.
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The company made two Breathometers that claims to be a ‘law enforcement grade’. The Breathometer Original is attached on the smartphone’s headphone jack while its Breeze version is wireless. While the company tested both the devices as per requirement, the FTC insists that none of the two add-ons was sufficently tested to prove accurate. Further, the Federal Trade Commission claimed that the Breathometer Breeze was showing lesser BAC levels than the user has, but yet they did not notify its buyers. Hence it is claimed that the company is resorting to deceptive advertising.
In the year 2015, Breathometer stopped selling its BAC analyzing products before FTC’s complaints. But according to the FTC, the company continued to sell its BAC products till early 2016. On May 2016, the company sent a letter to its retailers and registered users stating that the breathalyzer was inaccurately reporting its BAC levels. By October, the company disabled its feature in its app. To settle the matter with the FTC, Breathometer agreed to notify its users and offer a full refund. It is estimated the total sales of the Breathometer Original and Breeze is $5.1 million.
While the Federal Trade Commission claims deceptive advertisement, the company CEO Charles Michael Yim claims its a bad batch. This was due to its poor manufacturing process. It was also reported that its accuracy also depended on ambient humidity and temperature. The company moved out of BAC breathalyzer for good, but it will be making products for user’s health.
— Dawn of Tech (@DawnofTech) January 25, 2017