Biancamed, the world leading non-contact sleep and breathing sensor company spun out of University College Dublin and acquired by ResMed last year has announced a new partner Omron, the global Home Healthcare giant, will be taking their tech to market in the form of the “Sleep Design HSL-101” which differs from the previous implementation by Gear4 in that it’s a stand alone M2M device (eg. the patient doesn’t require an iPhone or iPad).
Having been involved in some extensive trials of devices for the sleep coaching market over the last few years the impact I’ve seen from modifications in device/service design have left me quite resolved that a smartphone connected device will be much more preferable for 99% of patients who live independently.
One of the biggest learning curves for me came from the patient feedback when we positioned placebo devices on their bedsides. The impact of very small design changes (eg. colors, shapes, blinking LED) was massive and we managed to put some of these lessons into the design of an Audio/Visual sleep program for a bedside tablet that on its own is very helpful.
When you realise what’s coming to smartphones (eg. the ability to play an ECG monitoring sleeping game) and what you can already do with them (eg. deliver timely interactive patient surveys) I think it’s unlikely that the devices styled without smartphone integration will have any chance particularly if the rumours materialise and several very big sports brands start marketing this tech to consumers very soon (byadding app/services like Motion X Sleep to complement their FuelBand/MiCoach offerings).
When you check out some of the fun, socially connected marketing efforts that Gear4 are already doing (eg. the “Dreamers Wanted” campaign) with their (yet to be launched) device I think it’s quite obvious that healthcare buyer focused competition who lack the mobile component are going to be at a massive marketing disadvantage and possibly taken out of their depth very quickly.
If you’re a medical device brand it’s high time you realised mobile changes everything and got a mobile guru onboard. I’d recommend starting out by swotting up on these future forecasts.