A report from Manhattan Research has found that 10 million adults in the U.S. have used their mobile phones to look up health information in the last year. The report, penned by Manhattan Research VP Meredith Abreu Ressi is called "The Future of Mobile Health: Mobile Adoption, mHealth and Mobile Marketing."
Ressi notes that The Food Network, WebMD, Johnson & Johnson, the National Health Service in the UK and many others have all launched mobile initiatives, while many large wireless carriers and some device manufacturers are devising mHealth strategies. Ressi also points out that biopharma companies are beginning to take a hard look at how to leverage mobile phones as their next marketing channel, too.
The rise of mHealth is attributable to advancements in device memory, connection speeds, and user-interface design as well as the prospect that mobile devices will be the primary Internet access point for most consumers in the next three to five years.
"All of this holds exciting possibilities for the world of mobile health," Ressi writes. "Just as 'eHealth' emerged as a buzzword in the early days of the Internet and later became an industry unto itself, 'mHealth,' short for 'mobile health,' is poised to see exponential growth in the U.S. in the coming years. mHealth has the potential to transform healthcare among consumers as much, if not significantly more than the Internet has. The relatively more portable, personal, and single task-focused characteristics of mobile are ideal for tracking and modifying health behavior, which is at the core of most health businesses and public initiatives."
According to the report's table of contents, Ressi's research includes analysis on strategies for iPhone applications, Voxiva, Cell-Life, WebMD, Johnson & Johnson, Zicam and more.