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TechTalk: New Phone App to monitor Alc. in Wineglass

Posted: Monday, 10 June 2013 11:41

TechTalk: New Phone App to monitor Alc. in Wineglass

June 10: The Australian wine company Jacob’s Creek plans to launch the first smartphone app in the world that lets you calculate how many standard alcoholic drinks you have consumed simply by pointing your smartphone at your wineglass.

Pernod Ricard’s Australian subsidiary- owned Jacob's Creek has developed a software app for smartphones that can calculate how many standard drinks there are in the wine glass, regardless of the size or shape of the glass. Known as ‘Wine Line’, the free iPhone app is available in Australia at this time.

Drinkers using the Wine Line app trace the outline of the wine in their glass by pointed their smartphone towards the glass and then select the type of wine they're drinking. They can either select a specific wine from the app's database of more than 70 popular Australian labels, or type in the amount of alcohol percentage that is printed on the back of the bottle, according to the report. Naturally, brands owned by Pernod Ricard- Brancott Estates, Mumm Champagne and the ubiquitous Jacob’s Creek are a part of the 70 labels.

The software calculates how many standard drinks (10 grams of alcohol in Australia) are in the glass - allowing users to keep track of how much they've consumed over a single session and whether they are going over the healthy limits of consumption.

Wine drinkers in India would feel happy to know that they are not far behind Australia in wine knowledge when they learn that according to a survey conducted by Premium Wine Brands, a subsidiary of Pernod Ricard and owner of Jacob's Creek, 86 per cent of Australians are not sure what constitutes a standard drink.

Jean-Christophe Coutures. CEO of Premium Wine Brands said he hoped the app would help promote responsible drinking."We see it as our responsibility as a major wine producer not only to communicate on this important topic, but to think creatively and develop innovative offerings to consumers."

Consumers on average get 150mL serve of wine, or 1.5 units of the standard serving. However, most Australians underestimate how much wine they are consuming, with 54 percent believing that the normal 150mL pour of wine contains fewer than 1.5 units; 32 per cent of people have no idea how many units there are in a 150ml glass of wine, according to the survey.

Interestingly, in an online voluntary survey conducted by an Australian website News Mail, their readers were asked if they would use this app to track how much alcohol they are consuming, 42% said it would be very useful while 57% didn’t care for it. Although the website rightly concedes it is not a scientific poll but it does indicate that there is a significant demand for the App.

Incidentally, 150 ml of red wine with 13% alc. is considered 1.5 standard drinks in Australia/UK with 15 gms of alcohol. 150 ml of white wine of 11.5% alc. 1.4 standard drinks-only because the alcohol level is lower, emphasizing the fact that higher the alcohol level in a wine or any beer or spirit, higher the alcohol-naturally. Thus Champagne with a usual alcohol level of 11.5-12% also has 1.4 units of alcohol. To get a better perspective, a can or bottle of 375 mL beer with alcohol strength of 4.8% has 1.4 units of alc.  A 30 mL shot of brandy, whisky and vodka etc of 40% alc. has 1 standard unit.

Whatever is the shape of the glass, the amount of alcohol units depends on the volume of alcohol and the percentage by volume. The iPhone App reads the volume and for the 70 wines pre-entered data for their alcohol levels, this amount of alcohol can be calculated.

Usually, 2 units a day of alcohol are considered safe for men and help the cardiovascular health-beyond which alcohol can be harmful to the liver and other body characteristics like BP. The App can be helpful to the drinker to decide whether he or she is crossing the healthy line.

The iPhone App is free and available in Australia. But hopefully, it will be available in other countries-at least where Jacob’s Creek is being exported.

Subhash Arora

DelWine recommends 2 standard drinks a day, one drink constituting 125 mL of wine with an alcohol level of 12.5%-13%. For higher level, one needs to reduce the advisable size- editor

       

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