San Francisco-based Qardio received FDA 510(k) clearance recently for its connected blood pressure monitor, called QardioArm. The device will be available for $99 next week on Qardio's website an in select stores.
Qardio, which debuted its blood pressure and heart rate monitor at CES, aims to not only be accurate, but also beautiful, so that it fits into the user’s daily life. According to Qardio, the device doesn’t look like a blood pressure monitor, which means users can carry it around in their purse or pocket without drawing attention to it. In fact, developers tried to make it look more like a notebook so that it looks like other items that potential users would carry around in their bag.
QardioArm connects via Bluetooth to a companion app where the information can be shared with family members or doctors. The device's battery lasts one year.
In February, Qardio started an Indiegogo campaign for the device. The company raised $146,339, which was $46,000 over its goal.
The company is also developing another device, called QardioCore that measures a user's ECG, heart rate, Heart Rate Variability, levels of physical activity, and variations in body temperature. In the Indiegogo description, Qardio said the new device was just a few months behind QardioArm.
Two other companies have been working on making visually-appealing blood pressure monitors. Within six months of each other, in the first half of 2011, iHealth and Withings received FDA 510(k) clearance for their connected blood pressure cuffs.
In a Withings press release at the time, the company wrote that its product offers a “modern way to measure and record blood pressure readings in the personal and professional arenas” because the company “combined advanced technology and sophisticated design to create a medical device that is visually attractive”.