In 2016 there are one billion smokers in the world, 80% of them want to stop but 96% of them fail each time they try.
James Stewart believes that every smoker has the right to be able to stop smoking when they want to. In 2014 he founded Kick.it and is working with world leading researchers, designers and health care organisations to build the best app in the world for smokers to kick the habit, launching late 2016.
People who are trying to quit smoking are twice as likely to succeed if they don't do it alone. A previous smoker, James successfully kicked the habit over 4 years ago when he committed to quitting with a friend. While there are government services in place in Australia for people trying to quit, he realized that almost 96% people don't take advantage of them. He thought, "Someone needs to create an app for this..." Friends encouraged him to make this idea a reality, and with their help and some seed investment he started building Kick.it.
Kick.it is designed to be the best app in the world for smokers to kick the habit. It uses a holistic and best practice approach, combining a private social network with evidence based interventions and behavioral change techniques. Think of it as a private support team from people who care about you combined with a mix of education and entertainment to get you through the many cravings that attack during nicotine withdrawal.
With the action button, you can record if you had a smoke or if you're experiencing a craving. If you are having a craving Kick.it is there to help you become mindful of what emotions and triggers are causing the craving then give you practical things to do to get through them in the moment. You will find links between certain actions and your cravings, and give craving ratings with the help of emojis. The feed is designed with inspiration and encouragement in mind and the card swiping layout of the app creates variable reward as you search for solutions and distractions to kick your craving. Using principles of psychology, Kick.it is able to use surprise and distraction to help users overcome cravings that generally only last for 3-4 minutes then subside. It encompasses everything from suggesting actions such as going for a walk, drinking water and eating some fruit, to medication reminders and of course, cat videos.
By learning where smokers are and how they feel, the app is able to understand the logic for each trigger and determine how they can get through it. Things like suggesting gum, walks, movies, and more are logged so patterns for success can be developed. It also provides you with encouragement through milestones, as well as monetary incentives, showing you how much you’ve saved as your habit has diminished.
You don't need to be a smoker to download the app. As a supporter, you can offer encouragement to those you care about. You are able to send them photos of loved ones and children, or words of support throughout their journey. They can also choose to share a visual representation of what has been effective for them with those in their network if they choose to. On average, it takes people about 12 attempts to quit smoking. Kick.it takes away the shame and guilt of a slip up or relapse and helps you get back on track until you eventually make it.
There are little to no restrictions in developing nations. Single cigarettes are sold outside schools to hook young people, and over a billion people smoke world-wide. The big tobacco corporations are full of injustices and corruption. James says that his mission is to destroy big tobacco by 2040, which he claims is "pretty radical, and quite dangerous."
His passion lies in working with world leading smoking cessation researchers to ensure that he builds Kick.it into a highly effective app that becomes a leading provider of cost effective smoking cessation services internationally and thus, help the world’s one billion smokers Kick.it.
He also hopes that his efforts can help end the exploitation of the 33 million children and adults that are essentially in slave labor producing tobacco products and suffering from Green Tobacco Sickness during his lifetime.