A not-so-complimentary NY Times hands-on review of the AARP RealPad.
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Ten CES technologies that could be useful to older adults
Last year, CES in Pajamas, this year CES from the kitchen. Everyone who is anyone in the tech world wants to be at CES…well, almost everyone. Remember a 2012 health tech article called CES in Pajamas? Check out TelecareAware's analysis of write-ups in The CES of Health or MDDI's note about Aging in Place. And this year, the Forbes article, I, Robot Journalist: Beaming into CES 2014 was a great use of the Beam (from Suitable Technologies) telepresence device, "a motorized stand that looks like an iPad glued to a Segway." The Forbes writer 'wanders' around the International CES show and sort-of elbows her robotic way around to view various booths. The CEO of Suitable Technologies wants to see 10,000 Beams at CES 2015. Let’s try to imagine that scene -- I bet CES introduces a Beam registration limit to minimize violence on the show floor. (Seriously, you read it here first.)
Maybe useful – or may be gone soon. But in the possibly wishful thinking category, here are 10 technology intros (murky names and descriptions not withstanding) that caught my eye. Though in a few cases you will not be able to tell from the marketing materials, but re-purposing is the name of the game in technology – and several here could be useful for caregivers, health care providers, physical therapists, and older adults. This is not an exhaustive list -- but it seems intriguing. I have a dream for next year -- call me crazy -- to show at CES in whatever zone, tech companies must have a readable website whose product content matches the displayed show technology, contact information and maybe even proposed price:
- ContinuLink is demonstrating CarePredict. From CES 2014 information: "The CarePredict Service uses a bracelet to track senior’s movement, location and motion, then sends that data to a cloud, where caregivers can not only view it but also receive alerts to changes in patterns that might necessitate intervention." Per Satish Movva, founder: "Predict when your aging loved one has a growing health concern, allowing you to intervene before there is a crisis. So you can schedule family visits and calls in a timelier manner. So you can celebrate with your family, friends, or elderly parents during the good times, and help them feel supported when times are tough. CarePredict bracelets are only $15 dollars apiece." I’d normally say learn more at CarePredict.com – but in this case, not now, learn more maybe later.
- Filip – a wearable smart watch for kids. Okay -- so I think it is for seniors too. "AT&T will sell Filip for $199 along with a $10 monthly service plan. There doesn’t appear to be a two-year commitment or contract with Filip and the plan is reasonably priced for what it provides. The $10 a month includes unlimited two-way voice calling and messaging but no data provision. That’s OK because Filip isn’t a data-centric smart watch. Instead, it’s a kid-friendly watch that doubles as a limited hands-free phone — only five trusted numbers can be programmed." Explain why this isn’t a mobile PERS device? Remembering of course, the $1.5 billion PERS market. Just saying. Learn more at filip.com.
- Heapsylon demos smart clothing, particularly socks. This is a company with a product for caregivers, even though it is hyped as a fitness tech in a sock at CES. "The Sensoria product line is based on patent pending e-textile sensor technology. The proprietary sensors have broad applicability in multiple fitness and clinical scenarios. The first products are a smart sock, t-shirt and sport bra able to collect heart rate, activity type and level, pressure forces on a user’s foot and more. The connected microelectronics send data via Bluetooth for instant analysis and feedback to both user and trainer/caregiver." See what I mean? Learn a bit more at heapsylon.com.
- i-SaiSo, remote care for seniors and their families. iSaiSo (Raleigh, NC) announced the launch of the i-SaiSo Wellbeing Monitor, a web-based subscription service and mobile app that provides 24/7 real-time monitoring and alerts for the day-to-day wellbeing management of seniors aging in place. "The i-SaiSo Wellbeing Monitor provides a one-touch, easy-to-use, family-friendly solution with the flexibility to accommodate different time-zones, geographies, devices and all the unique lifestyle demands families have, and to deliver complete peace of mind about our senior loved one’s wellbeing." Learn a bit more about this horrendously named offering at i-SaiSo.com.
- NAViSection System driver performance evaluation. For use in rehabilitation of or assistance to aging and/or medically impaired drivers, "NAViSection focuses on critical events during a supervised driving session where assistance is provided to avoid a collision. Using an integrated suite of technologies in the vehicle, my system senses activity at the interface of a certified driving evaluator and an intelligent vehicle. The events are then flagged in time as threats to the driver’s independence and safety when operating the vehicle. NAViSection detects steering assistance, braking assistance, and driving cues by the evaluator to provide the context of near-crash events, which promote a future of machine learning analytics that may advance collision avoidance by intelligent vehicles." Learn more at Everyday Health Innovation awards page.
- Ooma Wearable Safety Phone. "The Ooma Safety Phone is an innovative extension of the company's patented 911 Alerts feature which allows Ooma subscribers to enter three email addresses and/or mobile phone numbers to automatically notify designated recipients when 911 is dialed from their home phone. With the new Ooma Safety Phone, users can immediately call 911 by simply pressing the first of two speed-dial buttons on the device, and simultaneously issue email and text alerts to up to three individuals. The second speed-dial button will sequentially dial up to five family members and friends until the call is answered."Maybe find out more at Ooma.com.
- SenseGiz – fall detection. If you have a severe fall or crash, SenseGiz STAR detects it via its patent pending algorithms and automatically sends notifications to family and friends listed in the app via an alarm along with a text message. It comes with a panic button which can be pressed when in emergency and also a pre-set countdown timer to prevent false alarms being sent. It offers three sensitivity modes for fall/ crash detection offering high sensitivity for seniors and medium & low sensitivity for the younger ones. There is an optional feature to post emergency notification on Facebook/Twitter, so that more people are aware of the emergency. Learn a bit more from this press release about SenseGiz.
- Sen.se Mother. This company "built an infrastructure to continuously collect data sent by connected devices. This platform was designed to receive and store large volumes of information in real time. But above all, our platform processes the incoming data, interprets it on the fly, then continuously analyzes historical data in order to provide the end user with more and more smart services. Motion Cookies are the first essential members of the ever growing Mother family. Small and slick, they can be affixed to almost anything. They have the power to detect and understand the movements of objects and people." Learn very little more at Sen.Se.
- Skulpt – measuring muscle mass. This was another in the fitness category, but could be applied to helping older adults measure and maintain wellbeing. “To determine muscle composition, the device, which is smaller in size than an iPhone, presses against the skin where key muscles are located (specifically the biceps, triceps, abs and thigh). By measuring how a current flows within those muscles, data is collected and then synced to an online dashboard. Users can track body-fat percentage, set goals or share the data with others.” Now wouldn’t that make sense during rehabilitation following hospitalization? Learn a bit more at Skulpt.com.
- Waterproof Sony Xperia Z1S smartphone. Phones have come a long way, so to speak. This one is for those that want to chat in the shower or are a phone-using snorkeling aficionado. "Sony's latest flagship phone is waterproof, now down to a depth (in fresh water) of 4.9 feet for up to a half hour. The older model was rated at 3 feet. And with a physical camera key, you can capture stills and videos of the fishes you see while you're submerged. Another called "Info-eye" lets you search for information about whatever it is you are shooting. When I took a picture of a wine bottle label, for example, the phone searched for and brought up a rating for the wine along with suggested foods that might nicely complement what you are drinking." Really. Learn more at Sony store.