Success Stories

Story of

Hind Hobeika

3rd Place Winner


About the project

Hind Hobeika from Lebanon took third place in Stars of Science Season 2 in 2010 with her innovation Butterfleye (later rebranded Instabeat), a waterproof heart rate measuring device that can be placed on swimming goggles to accurately and continuously monitor the performance of swimmers. Instabeat helps swimmers, amateur and professional, better measure and optimize their performance.


Beyond Stars of Science

After her successful participation in Stars of Sceince, Hind further sharpened her knowledge and skills, obtaining a degree in Mechanical Engineering at the American University of Beirut. In September 2011, following a year of work for Dar Al Handasah in Lebanon, she quit her job and went on to found her own company Butterfleye which became Hind raised USD 6 million, much of it from the investor Berytech, located in Lebanon. Her award-winning startup moved to San Francisco where she worked on Instabeat with big names in product development. After 8 years, 250 swimmers in Lebanon, USA, and China, 

60,000 laps, 80 million heart beats, Instabeat came to life. In July 2019, her product was being sold worldwide.  Instabeat was the first smart add-on to the swimming goggles providing real-time visual feedback of training zones while swimming.


In July 2012, Instabeat won the $50,000 first prize in the MIT Enterprise Forum Pan Arab Business Plan Competition. Hind also took part in international conferences, including the Intel CEO Summit in Huntington Beach, California, USA, the Quantified Self conference in Amsterdam, Holland, the MENA Business Women Conference in Dubai, UAE and was chosen to speak as a 'Leader of Tomorrow' at the St. Gallen Symposium in Switzerland. In October 2012, Hind was selected as a fellow at the INK conference in association with TEDin Pune, India. In the following month, she also participated in a panel on Women in Business at the Harvard Arab Weekend Conference. She was also voted top five innovators under 35 by the MIT Pan Arab Technology Review and a leading Global Shapers by the World Economic Forum. Instabeat won the Best Wearable technology in CES 2014 awards. In June 2016, she was invited by President Obama to be a speaker at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit. 

Hoping to expand into the US market, Hind patented her device there while making several improvements in the design. Instabeat’s latest model was 70% smaller, 50% lighter, and had an addition of advanced features like motion detection, wireless connectivity and a dashboard that simplified post-workout data analysis. 


Unfortunately, following the covid-19 pandemic which led to the closure of swimming pools worldwide, several of Hind’s ventures were put on hold until she finally had to shut down production and turn the page on Instabeat. 


“Instabeat was an incredibly difficult product to deliver, it was called “the mount Everest of hardware” by everyone we’ve worked with. We designed and manufactured the product from scratch twice; in the last round, I personally moved to China for a year to make sure we got to the finish line.

We had a successful launch, with great reviews, and were backed by some of the top swimmers and coaches in the world. However, a few months ago, our sales drastically stopped overnight when pools all around the world closed due to COVID-19 lockdowns. We were also working on some partnerships that were put on hold, and we found ourselves at an impasse. We realized it would be impossible for us, under the current circumstances, to keep delivering a product that exceeds your expectations” said Hind in the statement she shared with the Instabeat community on the day while expressing her gratitude and love for those who supported her journey. 

Hind is currently working at the augmented reality department at the Facebook headquarters in San Francisco. 


Hind’s personal reflection

Stars of Science was life changing because it taught me the power of outside-the-box thinking,” said Hind. “The show empowered me to create my own products. I approached the competition with passion, energy, and focus. However, if I got the opportunity to do it all over again, I would relax more and cry less.”

Hind in the news

For more information about Hind’s work, please visit: and on hapifork_n_2444321.html#slide=1969013


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