The BACtrack Skyn passively tracks alcohol content in the body through a Transdermal Alcohol Content (TAC) reading. The Skyn estimates a person’s Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) by detecting alcohol molecules that the body excretes through sweat. In addition, the device takes a reading every 20 seconds to give a minute-by-minute reading of the increase or decrease of BAC in a person. This allows for the most convenient method of alcohol monitoring available.
This article will go over the Skyn, how it works, its many features and its current state of development. Furthermore, as personal breathalyser technology develops and becomes more widespread, more and more are taking charge of their consumption. Such devices allow habitual consumers of alcohol to monitor the effects on their bodies. As a result, these personal alcohol testers prevent accidents and injuries on the road and in the workplace and keep people safe.
How Does the BACtrack Skyn Work?
The BACtrack Skyn uses a top-of-the-line biosensor to read Transdermal Alcohol Content (TAC) from sweat. In comparison, personal breathalysers analyse a breath sample to read Blood Alcohol Concentration. The Skyn continuously process sweat samples and produces a BAC result after gathering enough TAC data. As a result, it allows users access to a consistent and constant read on their alcohol levels. The technology is still relatively new, but continuing studies prove optimistic.
Users of the revolutionary device can track the rise or fall of alcohol content in their bodies. They can also receive a notification when their intoxication level reaches a certain threshold. Moreover, BACtrack is currently improving the algorithm that converts TAC to a more accurate estimation of blood alcohol concentration. Furthermore, the Skyn can work in two ways. The first is a supplementary device through an interchangeable band attached to the Apple Watch.
The second is a standalone device worn on the wrist. The BACtrack Skyn wristband is discreet and tracks BAC changes in near real-time. Additionally, a wearable alcohol monitor and portable devices like a breathalyser can help individuals and organisations monitor alcohol consumption better. Impairment from excessive alcohol consumption is hazardous to the lives and safety of the public. Therefore, the potential of the Skyn wristband will help keep the roads and workplaces safe from hazards of alcohol use.
- Biosensor – the Skyn wristband uses these to analyse trace amounts of alcohol that the body sweats out
- Water resistant – the BACtrack Skyn can withstand contact with light moisture
- Lithium-ion battery – the Skyn boasts a battery life of 10 days
- Connectivity – can be used alone or paired with an Apple device
A Short Timeline of the BACtrack Skyn’s Development
The BACtrack Skyn has been in development for quite a time. Research on transdermal alcohol monitoring has been going on since the early 2000s. However, BACtrack first developed the Skyn in 2016, where it was awarded the top prize in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) challenge for alcohol biosensor development. Then, in 2017, BACtrack unveiled two prototypes for the device, one that is a standard wearable wrist strap and another that integrates and connects seamlessly to the Apple Watch.
Continuing, in 2019, BACtrack makes the Skyn available for use in research purposes. As a result, many top-tier academic institutions used the device to conduct controlled studies. Through the first year of the pandemic, BACtrack continues to improve the technology behind the Skyn, developing more alcohol testing consistency. In addition, BACtrack spends the pandemic year reducing the size of the Skyn, adding water resistance and improving battery life.
2022 is significant for BACtrack, as they launched the Skyn beta testing program. As of current development, the Skyn measures TAC every 20 seconds and only gives a BAC estimate in low, medium and high ranges. As of middle and late 2022, BACtrack is still improving the features of the BACtrack Skyn. In addition, it has ongoing connectivity improvement and developing its BAC prediction algorithm. BACtrack’s ultimate goal is to make the Skyn as reliable as a breathalyser.
Research Papers Applying the Device
- Sensitivity, specificity and tolerability of the BACtrack Skyn – Yale University School of Medicine
- Temporal Dynamics of Transdermal Alcohol Concentration – University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
- Wearable alcohol monitors for alcohol use data collection – School of Public Health Indiana University
- Wrist-worn Alcohol Biosensors: application and usability – University of Florida
BACtrack Skyn Availability
The BACtrack Skyn is currently only available for beta testing in the United States. BACtrack is working to improve the technology and its accuracy before its official public launch. In addition, the Skyn is, as of now, only compatible with iOS devices. Nonetheless, BACtrack is also working to develop the Skyn for compatibility with Android devices soon. In addition, BACtrack is also working to improve its breathalyser technology for future use.
Furthermore, both the BACtrack smartphone breathalysers and the Skyn utilise the BACtrack app, which fully integrates into Apple Health. Additionally, a remote monitor application through the BACtrack View incorporates with the BACtrack Mobile Pro, and, in the future, the Skyn. Health professionals use it for monitoring individuals under a recovery program. The app helps keep institutions, such as workplaces, doctors, and parents, informed of tests and consumption habits.
Although the BACtrack Skyn is still under development, individuals can use various accurate breath-testing device from Breathalysers Australia for personal or workplace use. The alcohol testers include portable keychain breathalysers (BACtrack Go) to more professional-grade fuel cell breathalysers like the S80 Pro. Likewise, the new SHIELD breathalysers offer the highest precision needed for large testing volumes in a workplace. BACtrack is committed to improving alcohol detection technology to empower its users to monitor their consumption better and improve safety.
The Type of BACtrack Breathalyser
- Workplace breathalysers – these professional breathalysers, such as the Pro Series, provide accurate results for large testing volumes where tests are conducted back to back and need extensive testing records
- Personal breathalysers – these portable breathalysers are ideal for use in monitoring alcohol consumption before driving
- Smartphone breathalysers – connect to mobile phones for accurate alcohol monitoring.
The BACtrack Skyn is the future of alcohol monitoring technology. This device can be worn discreetly to conveniently keep track and monitor alcohol consumption and intoxication passively. The Skyn is the most non-invasive method of acquiring alcohol readings with the least effort. In addition, Skyn also keeps track of one’s consumption over time through a graph. Furthermore, like the BACtrack’s smartphone breathalysers, they come equipped with ZeroLine technology to estimate when the BAC returns to 0.00%.
Moreover, although the device is still in its beta testing phase, many high-level universities in the United States have already started applying it for extensive studies in alcohol monitoring. Studies continue regarding the development of TAC or Transdermal Alcohol Concentration, which measures consumption and intoxication through sweat instead of blood, as in the case of breathalysers and BAC. Until Skyn’s release, BACtrack will continue developing the device and its breathalyser technology.