Stryde, an immersive and affordable connected fitness company, offers a cycling experience that brings popular instructors and boutique studios into customers' homes. Working with Stryde founder, Pavlo Chikosh, we helped bring his vision for a premium connected home workout experience to fruition. By optimizing the product offering, streamlining the business processes, and perfecting the customer experience, we took Pavlo’s concept to product launch in less than 3 months. By partnering with the Polymath Labs START™ team, Pavlo was able to develop an industry strength platform in the highly competitive connected fitness space and launch in a matter of months.
In the connected fitness landscape, offering walled-garden subscriptions, single-use tablets, and bikes at extravagant price points has become common. Stryde addresses a gap in the market by offering consumers a wider range of instructors and instruction styles on a multi-use tablet capable of running a variety of Android apps. With both competitive and noncompetitive user modes, customers are able to curate a fitness experience that meets their individual needs. In short, a superlative product and user experience at an affordable, inclusive price.
Prior to the Polymath Labs engagement, Stryde had formalized several fundamental partnerships. A German industrial designer was responsible for building the sleek, sensor-laden bike and a team of engineers built the large-screen Android companion tablet. With these building blocks in place, Stryde needed the right development partner to make the magic happen. They needed a flawless app and web experience that would seamlessly integrate the digital processes with the bike’s physical elements. The right partner for Stryde would be a team with a deep understanding of the connected fitness space, exceptional hardware and software engineering ability, and a proven track record of successfully taking a product from ideation to market. With so many potential options, choosing the right partner was a critical decision that Pavlo and the Stryde team couldn’t afford to get wrong… Enter Polymath Labs START™.
Tailored to each partner's unique needs, START™ is our scalable, secure and repeatable service program responsible for bringing new ideas to life. We ask the right questions, have the skills to develop the design, engineering and go-to-market capabilities enabling a successful build and launch. We are masters of optimization, deploying state-of-the-art cloud native architecture solutions that are scalable, adaptable and quicker to deploy. Here’s a breakdown of what that process looks like:
Working closely with Stryde we determined the feature sets that adhered to Pavlo’s desire to provide “an amazing connected workout experience at home with broader appeal and wider content offerings than premium creators...all at a competitive price.” At Polymath Labs, we do a lot, but we are particularly good at bringing the “viable” portion of MVP home.
From the get-go, we collaborated with Stryde to identify which elements that make for the ideal customer experience and worked backwards from there. We created a static website to showcase the Stryde bike and integrated with Shopify for payments, ecommerce, and fulfillment. To reduce purchase friction, customers create account profiles that promote subscription purchases, process payments, and manage notifications once the initial purchase is complete.
Early engagement with the product must be a positive experience. By making it easy for customers to log in on the bike’s connected tablet using the account credentials they created during the purchase process, they are able to immediately begin using their Stryde bike. The tablet was designed to be used like any other standard tablet enabling users to consume riding content from the core Stryde app, a wide array of pre-approved apps like Netflix, as well as premium browser-based streaming services. The Stryde app is intuitive, featuring a real-time progress meter, a leaderboard, performance gauges for speed, intensity and resistance, and gamification triggers to keep riders engaged and active. A seamless post-workout survey / reaction feature is also included to capture critical user feedback.
This is our deepest discipline and the foundation for our capacity to serve our clients. Everything we do is purpose-built and scalable leveraging serverless cloud native architecture to maximize ROI. The administrative portal we developed for Stryde included a CMS for the on-demand content aggregated from their boutique content-creation partners, a customer management and tracking, platform for analytics, performance tuning, and more.
When configuring Stryde's technical stack, we used React Native and React for the tablet app, customer web portal, and administrative / CRM portal in order to incorporate a seamless upgrade path with 100% control retention over the device. Our backend selection was Serverless AWS Native Cloud, promoting speed to market, low operating costs, and automatic support for more capacity as the business scales. Over four months, we executed iterative design sprints with the client wherein they defined the customer journey for both tablet and web, created clickable design mockups for client sign-off, and oversaw detailed user testing prior to build. By design, our team’s skill set spans both software and hardware, so we were able to handle any unforeseen complications that arose as the prototype progressed from a cycling simulation to actual hardware without losing any momentum toward the MVP completion date.
We believe in a deep co-development ethos when partnering with clients so we can jointly arrive at the best solution. We are really fast when the client has clarity of vision, trusts our alignment with that vision, and enables us to execute against it using our efficient tools and processes.
Upon hitting some of the technical unknowns when dealing with hardware, 99% of other dev shops who are only web or app developers would have thrown in the towel, whereas, Polymath Labs rose to the occasion to complete the necessary low-level sensor engineering to keep us on track for release.
Pavlo’s testimony says a lot about our partnership, “From initial contact, Polymath Labs and START™ checked all of my requirements for a high quality engineering partner,” but Stryde’s entrance to the market speaks for itself: selling out their initial run upon launch. Shortly thereafter Stryde expanded into four-figure unit sales, and is projecting an aggressive growth trajectory through 2021. We made sure to position Stryde for independence from day one by facilitating the successful transition of code, production notes, designs and devops processes to the Stryde team while helping Stryde CEO Pavlo interview potential product, design and engineering hires. What’s more, Stryde was able to grow from beta launch testing to full production without altering the backend platform serving the consumer app/web and admin/CMS portal thanks to the serverless cloud native architecture we developed that facilitates robust backend solutions while maximizing ROI at scale.
At Polymath Labs, we have established a track record of game-changing partnerships with everyone from small startups to established businesses, and our engineering expertise and business savvy have brought five startups to market in the last three years. If our illustration of Stryde’s electric transformation into an elite industry competitor has inspired you to find a trusted engineering partner, take the first step forward with Polymath Labs START™ by clicking here and reaching out.