An Update from Tellspec CEO Isabel Hoffmann

Dear Supporters and Friends,

The TellSpec™ headquarters are buzzing with excitement! As you know, we are now collaborating with Texas Instruments to incorporate their award-winning DLP® technology into the TellSpec food scanner. We are currently hard at work to produce beta units for our Indiegogo Beta Testers and Developer Contributors. We expect to start delivery of these scanners in late Q2 2014. The TellSpec scanner will use micromirrors and a broadband lamp rather than a laser, ultimately bringing a safer, more accurate and faster technology to consumers.

Our Beta Testers and Developer Contributors will play a crucial role in helping to build the TellSpec global food database. These backers will be some of the first to own the device and are key supporters to making this powerful tool available to the public.

With the beta units, the testers will be able to scan simple foods (like fruits, vegetables, crackers, breads, chocolate, eggs, meat and potato chips) and receive data about the calories, macronutrients, ingredients, and allergens in that particular item of food. This summer, we will have a live video demonstrating a beta unit in action, along with instructions on how to use the scanner to help grow the global TellSpec food database.

Thanks to the data collected by beta testers; we anticipate that the final model to be able to scan simple mixed foods such as cakes and pizzas. The final model is expected to be delivered to all backers including the ones that have pre-bought the scanner on our website by the end of the year. Every time beta testers scan, they not only learn about what’s in their food, but they also grow the global TellSpec database. TellSpec’s commitment to building a healthier world by empowering people to make informed choices grows with every scan. That is crowd-sourced power for consumers. And this is only the beginning. Details on how we will accomplish this are outlined in our patent filed August 13, 2013.

Crowd-funding enabled our team to receive immediate feedback from our backers and the public, which led us to make strategic choices with our product and further expand our vision. It was this very same feedback that led us to switch from Raman laser technology to the safer NIR spectroscopy technology. We listened to you, our backers, and your concerns about the safety of the laser used in Raman. We chose the NIR spectral measurement technology as the alternative to Raman because it is used extensively in the industry for food analysis and has a proven track record for food applications since the 1980s. We also received a lot of feedback about tracking daily goals and providing nutritional advice; both of which are features that we will now include in our beta version of our smartphone application.

We strongly believe responding to consumer feedback to develop the best product for our backers is a key part of the crowd-funding experience. This allows our backers to remain an integral part of our project that aims to build a healthier world by empowering people to make informed choices about the food they eat. This is truly a project for the people, grown by people, and made stronger and better by people.

To our Beta Testers and Developer Contributors:

Please note that the look and feel of the beta unit you will receive is different than the final version we will send to you at the end of the year. This is because we are still working on fine-tuning the technology to be small enough to fit into the palm-sized scanners like the prototypes on our page. It’s not as sexy as the final version you will receive at the end of the year but it is ready for its first assignment! And, it will have the ability to receive data about the calories, macronutrients, ingredients, allergens in simple food.

Our VP of Hardware Engineering, Dr. John Coates, a world recognized expert spectroscopy, is busy working to integrate new hardware features into the TellSpec scanner so the price will be kept low. John is currently working with a design group we have engaged, to deliver the TellSpec scanner within the expected price point.

Lastly, as an integral part of TellSpec’s success, we want to keep you abreast of our progress and share how we are using the money we’ve raised as a community. Since our funding in November, we have recruited further talent, begun set up our distribution chains, invested in further R&D, paid for hardware partners for a first run of production, and are developing directives for beta testers along with the beta prototype scanners.

Changing the way people access information about their food will not be an easy task, but thanks to your backing, the action you take will help build the global TellSpec food database. Furthermore; it is your support of this disruptive technology that will help us succeed in revolutionizing what we know about what’s in our food. We thank you for your continued support, loyalty, and understanding.

Wishing you the best in health and peace always,

Have questions? Email us at

Isabel Hoffmann
Founder and CEO