Independa has raised $11M to date for TV-based health engagement for seniors

By Brian Dolan
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Independa TV AngelaAfter closing its second round of funding a few months ago, a $6 million round, San Diego-based Independa has raised a total of about $11 million over the years for its television-based, health engagement offering for seniors. The company has inked strategic partnerships with TV-maker LG and mobile device giant Samsung in recent years, and is currently signing up channel partners to drive sales of its product, called Angela. It has signed up three such partners since the start of 2015 and has another set to launch in the coming weeks.

Angela, which runs on specific models of LG televisions as well as some Samsung tablets, features one-touch shortcuts to video chats, email, the Internet, Facebook, games and puzzles, and other interactive content. The interface offers large screen fonts, higher contrast and bright colors for those with poor eyesight. Angela can also remind users to take medications; keep medical and personal appointments; and remember birthdays and anniversaries. the company describes the product as being designed for the "non-technical elderly". 

Earlier this year at CES 2015, Independa announced that it would launch Angela direct-to-consumer in April 2015. People will be able to buy the Independa-enabled LG TV. As part of that launch, Independa also announced an upcoming mobile app version of its caregiver web portal. The first iteration of that mobile app is set to launch in Apple's AppStore next month, Independa CEO Kian Saneii told MobiHealthNews in an interview. As the company noted at CES, the app will also support HealthKit and Apple Watch integrations in the future.

Saneii told MobiHealthNews that while there are mobile options for using Angela, the key to Independa's offering is that it makes use of technology that older people already know well.

"You don't need a computer or a tablet to use this," Saneii said. "It's just like watching TV. This is the 'holy grail' technology that the elderly already know how to use. We can engage this one-way, commodity appliance and make it into a place of engagement for both loved ones and brands. Our platform is HIPAA-compliant and registered with the FDA as a class 1 device. We can integrate data from class 2 home medical devices, too, but really our focus is engagement, first and foremost, from the TV."