In an interview with Mobile Business Magazine, Doro’s Managing Director Chris Millington, has revealed details of the senior mobile (or the much better crafted “Easy to use mobiles for everyone”) manufacturers Smartphone mHealth strategy. Despite being less than 4 years in the mobile device industry the company has charted phenomenal success with mobile operators who are aware of the benefits of their more inclusively designed devices and they’re now stocked widely in the major retailers:
In the interview Chris very clearly identifies the enormous growth opportunity that the company is addressing:
“the over-65 population in the UK, which currently stands at 18% of our total population, will double in the next 20 years, and in 50 years will be more than 50% of our population. Already today, streamlining and reducing the cost of healthcare for this age group is vital… …we already have 1% of the total UK GSM device market, and 3% in Ireland and also in the Nordics, but in the UK I’d like to take that to over 3% by the end of December 2011”
Before revealing some details on the mHealth focus the company is preparing for launch:
“the Doro PhoneEasy 610 includes a button that when pressed, tells a central call centre that X patient has taken X medication on time; if no confirmation comes through from the patient, the case is escalated, with a reminder text message and then a phone call from the call centre of required. That service will be launched later this year, and will appeal to healthcare providers and insurers, as well as some mobile operators”
As industrial partner in the VICON European Union funded research project the company is cooperating with scientific institutions to bring “out an Android device, rather than using our own proprietary platform” with the aim that they will be able to support “more health care applications” that require “much larger screens”, “touchscreens and other smart aspects that end users desire”. (Don’t forget forward facing cameras!)
Investment and Time frames
Commenting on the size of the R&D investment Doro are making in the Android App project Chris revealed it’s as much as 10% of the firms revenue. By my rough estimates this probably equates to as much as €1.6 million (on the basis that the companies care electronics division is in all liklihood at least maintaining the substantial sales growth of 2010) which would greatly exceed the Fisher Price App commitments being made by competitor GreatCall – that I reported here last week.
Commenting on timeframes Chris revealed that the new product “should debut at Mobile World Congress 2012”, with a “commercial launch due around April or May next year” which should prove to be a nice sequel to the mHealth Initiative partnerships they announced at this years event.
See you in Barcelona?
As a big fan of Doro’s strategy and “easy” devices you can be sure I’ll be front row for this launch…