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Ten Technologies for Aging and Health from CES 2024

The press releases signal a busy time in Las Vegas.  Viewed from afar, drowning in press releases, it is clearly a nearly fully revived CES 2024. With 130,000 attendees it’s down a bit from 2020’s peak of 175,000.  From electric motorcycles and low-profile automobile antennas, the unfolding TV to robotic pool cleaners and lawn mowers and construction, it sounds like it was a noisy place. Some folks think this is a consumer show, but that was the long-ago Consumer Electronics Show. So many entrants in the AgeTech, accessibility and health categories seek visibility and possible global reach:

Today it is just CES 2024 and it is really a B2B(2B2B) event. Retailers look for innovation, especially AI, product developers look for distributors, corporations look for better ways to work.  And there are numerous separate focal points for tech for older adults (see Samsung Health House) and a CTA Foundation Pitch Competition.  Among so many choices, here are 10 offerings in the markets of aging and/or disability, that are shown at CES 2024, described in media releases or on their websites, and may be available now or in the future:

Bosch Sensortec MEMS sensors. Our cutting-edge sensor technology enhances the capabilities of hearables and provides manufacturers with innovative features including gesture and context recognition, speech processing and voice enhancement, as well as precise head orientation tracking. Learn more.

eSight. eSight is a wearable assistive technology that allows people living with visual impairments to stay on the go while performing the tasks of daily living. The comprehensive medical equipment enhances vision for individuals with over 20 distinct ocular disorders, frequently enabling users to attain 20/20 vision. eSight eyewear combines a high-definition camera, proprietary algorithms, and powerful processing platform to relay and magnify real-time imagery onto two high-resolution screens positioned before each eye, resulting in enhanced binocular vision.  Learn more.

GyroGear.  Approximately 200 million individuals globally suffer from lifelong, incurable hand tremors (Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor), greatly diminishing their quality of life.GyroGear has developed the world’s most advanced hand tremor stabilizer, and to the best of our knowledge, the first mechanical gyroscope medical device. The GyroGlove features a high-performance gyroscope, which instantaneously stabilizes hand tremors, resulting in restoration of quality of life. Learn more.

Lumen glasses for the blind. This is a headset that wears around the forehead and directs the user towards avoiding any obstacles and hazards, giving the visually-impaired an effective way to get around without a dog or human companion leading the way. No need to wait for the availability of a guide dog or deal with the maintenance that comes with them – just put the gadget on and use its computer vision to lead you where you need to go. uses haptic feedback and auditory cues to lead the user around, so the forehead makes perfect sense for giving directional hints with its wide patch of skin and proximity to the ears. In its current form, the device should be compatible with around 80 percent of adult heads. Learn more. 

MindMics Heart Health System. MindMics Heart Health System is an innovative and comprehensive solution designed to address the growing need for next-generation heart health monitoring. At the core of our technology is the patented in-ear Infrasonic Hemodynography (IH), which enables heart health monitoring through TWS earbuds. Our system combines clinical accuracy of a 99% IH-ECG correlation to measuring each heartbeat. MindMics provides users a dashboard based on their personal baseline showing physiological states in real time. Placing emphasis on stress recovery and blood pressure management, our solutions are tailored to meet individual needs, providing actionable steps for users to manage their health and thrive. Learn more.

NuraLogix Magic Mirror. This device scans a person's face, including the blood vessels beneath the skin, and based on the collected data, identifies signs of dozens of diseases.  Anura MagicMirror is a desktop device with a 21.5-inch screen, cameras, and various sensors. It scans a person's face, primarily focusing on blood flow analysis. The gadget utilizes a patented transdermal optical visualization technology to detect facial blood vessels. Machine learning algorithms use this data to analyze over 100 health parameters. Learn more. 

Orcam Hear. Utilizing AI technology, this new device will give assistance to those who need it with hearing, as it will allow those who wear it the ability to better understand conversations in crowded areas. It uses the tech to sample people's voices, creates profiles for those voices, then takes what they say and communicates it clearer to those who don't have the best of hearing. Or do hear well but need assistance in crowded or noisy environments. Learn more.

Pebble-MS. Pebble-MS is a combination of a noninvasive glucose and vital signs monitor and a digital stethoscope for telediagnosis. This small portable composite device is well featured to measure the blood glucose noninvasively using a near-infrared photosensor without finger pricking, and multiple vital signs such as heartrate, oxygen level (SpO2), electrocardiogram (ECG), blood pressure and skin temperature. The vital sign and acoustic data of a digital stethoscope are displayed on the product’s smartphone APP and shared with designated clinicians for telediagnosis in real-time via our cloud service platform. Learn more.

Valencell Cuffless BP. Valencell, the company whose optical heart rate technology enabled the ability of wearables to accurately measure cardiovascular vitals during exercise, today announced plans to launch its own branded product line in the digital health sector under the name Valencell Health™ as it concentrates efforts to bring solutions to market to manage chronic diseases. The company’s first product candidate is the Fingertip™ Blood Pressure Monitor, focused on helping people spot-check measure BP and manage hypertension by combining an intuitive app with an innovative over-the-counter device to accurately measure blood pressure (BP) from the finger without a cuff or calibration. Learn more.

Xander-Kardian XK300-H.  Xandar Kardian’s XK300-H is the first-ever radar-based vital signs monitoring solution intended specifically for home use. The XK300-H is intended to autonomously and continuously monitor human vital signs for patients in the comfort of their own home. This represents a game-changing evolution to the standard of care for all forms and stages of home health treatment - especially patients with chronic or long-term health conditions. XK300-H measures macro (body motion), micro (breathing motion) and nano (heartbeat) vibration patterns that are constantly generated by our human bodies and is capable of doing so even through objects like clothes and blankets. Learn more.

[See most recent research report, AI and the Future of Care Work.] 

Comments

I was at CES 2024 to cover health tech developments (and logged 45 miles for the week). I saw most -- if not all -- of the products mentioned above. And I encourage readers to take the claims in the press releases with a shovel-full of salt.

The hard fact is that many of these devices for medical conditions have not been cleared by the FDA. Until then, they are attractive lab experiments but of questionable value to the public. Take non-invasive glucose measurement, for example. I saw about a half-dozen such products at CES 2024, yet NONE of them have FDA clearance. In fact, I do not know of a single commercial product that does non-invasive glucose measurement that has FDA clearance. This is a particularly difficult problem, and companies have tried using PPG (LED lights), RF (radio-frequency radar), electrophoresis, and other biometric approaches, but none have succeeded yet. Google's parent company Alphabet (Google's parent company) spent years and millions of dollars trying to create a smart contact lens to measure blood glucose before giving up (and this was years ago).

Some of the products mentioned above are legit. For example, the Valencell Cuffless BP blood pressure device looks like a typical pulse-Ox (SpO2) finger clamp and can measure blood pressure without the need for calibration with a pressure cuff. They expect to have FDA clearance later this year, and I have every reason to believe that they will get it.

This is a tantalizing list of products, but some of them have a long way to go before they can become legitimate products for sale in the U.S. The health tech landscape is littered with companies that promised features such as cuff-less blood pressure or non-invasive glucose monitoring, but that were not able to deliver. Be careful to investigate thoroughly before getting your hopes up.

 

Alfred Poor
The Health Tech Futurist

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