IBM's hub for wearables could have you out of the hospital faster

The prototype device links to a host of wearables to gather health data for doctors

IDG

IDG

Researchers at IBM have developed a hub for wearables that can gather information from multiple wearable devices and share it with a doctor, potentially cutting down on the time patients need to spend in a hospital.

The gadget, which IBM has dubbed a 'cognitive hypervisor,' funnels data from devices such as smart watches and fitness bands into the IBM Cloud. There, it's analyzed and the results are shared with the user and their doctor.

The idea is that patients can be monitored reliably through the device so they can be sent home to recover from illnesses a day or two earlier than they might otherwise have been allowed. It also means that should a problem develop, a doctor can be alerted immediately and an ambulance dispatched if it's serious enough.

IBM demonstrated a prototype of the device in San Francisco on Tuesday.

"I am Chiyo, your new companion. During this time, please touch me to start," it said after powering up. "Every time you touch me, I will tell you about your status."

img 0572 Magdalena Petrova

IBM's Chiyo health device as seen during a demonstration in San Francisco on February 14, 2017.

Fed with simulated data, the prototype alerted to a low blood oxygen level and a high temperature after it was tapped.

The device will react to voice commands and interact through a text-to-speech engine. One of the jobs facing researchers is to make the digital speech more realistic and more conversational.

Doing that will encourage users to interact with the device, said Rahel Strässle, a researcher working on the technology at IBM Research in Switzerland.

In developing the system, IBM isn't planning to get into the wearables business. Instead, it plans to offer the service as a platform on which other companies can build their own health services.

"They can use this technology to build their own wearable devices," said Bruno Michel, manager of smart system integration at the same IBM Research office.

The prototype is about the size of a grapefruit and is built with off-the-shelf components such as a Raspberry Pi and Arduino boards, but Michel thinks it can be made much smaller.

"I think in about five years, we will be able to have that fit into the ear canal," he said.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags IBMWearables

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?