New Audio App Aims To Connect Trainers To Phone Users

An iPhone app, from Ethan Agarwal’s Aaptiv company, aims to connect users to a personal trainer regardless of where they are for convenience, to meet demands in an industry that’s always changing and gaining new fads. Word from company owner says that they might go public sometime in the near future.

According to the company owner and founder, he wanted to make something that would allow people to connect with personal trainers regardless of location. He says that he came up with that idea back when he was a consultant at McKinsey & Co., back when he gained 40lbs. He wanted to get back in shape, but he couldn’t find a personal trainer that was easily accessible from the places he worked in.

It was then, he said, that he saw the opportunity to create an app that would help connecting people to a personal trainer regardless of where they are at lower costs. The new app was set apart from the rest thanks to using audio, covering workouts ranging from yoga to marathon training, with coaches and trainers narrating the tracks for the app.

The app is available for subscribers, with  a monthly fee of $14.99, or $180 annually, compared to the usual annual membership fee of $99.99. According to the company data, the vast majority of its new members, about 90% pay for the annual plan. President  Harley Miller of Insight Venture Partners; the firm supporting Aaptiv, says that this is because the field Aaptiv is in lends itself well to long term commitments.

Agarwal says that Aaptiv might go public in 2020, though they’re considering carefully so as to avoid the same end as the boutique fitness brand, SoulCycle, which was forced to close by pulling its IPO registration last May, three years after having filled it.

One of the major criticisms leveled at companies like SoulCycle was that they only functioned in major metropolitan areas where people would usually pay about $35 for every class. Agarwal is working to make sure that Aaptiv is affordable and accessible regardless of location, saying that it’s his job to create a product as well as to inspire and motivate people while ensuring a sound business.

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