On October 29, 2002, the Tanita Corporation announced the upcoming release of the Tanita Mama Mitte, the first scale that could track the health of a pregnant mother and the baby she carries up until the child reaches age 5.
The concept was based on a theory published in the Nissan Women’s Journal #54 by the Hyogo Prefectural Kashiwabara Hospital, Obstetrics and Gynecology Department. The theory allowed to accurately measure the weight of a pregnant mother the weight of the baby by taking regular measurement and comparing them to the expect result.
Instead of creating their own device to run the application needed to provide the information to the parents, Tanita decided to use a Bandai SwanCrystal console to cut on the development cost. Bandai provided a limited edition of the SwanCrystal called the Tanita Mama Mitte. The console came with the Mama Mitte software, developed with the help of Masao Nakabayashi, director of Aiko Hospital. The software included:
- Weight body fat measurement displayed as a graph.
- Information on pregnancy, childbirth and childcare.
- Suggested Exercise.
- Mini games.
- Measurement data – You can check past data and records blood pressure / body temperature.
- Multiple profile: The father can use the device for blood pressure and guess account let others see some of the recorded information.
- Toy Box Room: Each time you take a measurement, you earn point that can be exchanged for “in-game” items
The program was made to be switched in postpartum mode after the birth of the child to follow its growth. The software could hold up to five years of data.
Although no official sale number are available, the initial press release stated that Tanita aimed to sell 5,000 units in the first year.