Startups launch and rumors swirl ahead of CES

By Brian Dolan

Brian Dolan, Editor, MobiHealthNewsThe International 2010 Consumer Electronics Show kicked off this week with a flurry of news, but come Saturday a portion of the CE industry's attention will be focused on connected health devices and services at the Digital Health Summit co-located at the event.

Despite the event season's early start, however, wireless health companies have already begun making news in the New Year:

Wellcore, a Menlo Venture-backed startup unveiled its fall detection and wellness monitoring service today. The company uses accelerometers, GPS, cellular, Bluetooth, motion detection algorithms and Zigbee to help users.

Mayo Clinic has created a joint venture, called mRemedy, with app developer DoApps that is focused on smartphone health applications based on Mayo's Research. First offering: Mayo Clinic Mediation app.

GE Healthcare and Intel expanded their marketing agreement for the Intel Health Guide beyond the US and into the UK market.

Rumors are intensifying that Apple will introduce a tablet computer at the end of the month -- and we believe that given the healthcare industry's affinity for tablets, the announcement will include some features or applications geared toward the vertical. (Remember the Apple-Epic System mobile EHR software pilot at Stanford?)

A few companies also snuck in some last minute news at the end of 2009:

Kaiser Permanente launched its text message (SMS) appointment reminder service with SMS partner mobileStorm in mid-December. (We first wrote about their pilot about a year ago.)

MedApps managed to secure even more regulatory clearances -- this time ISOs and a CE Mark, enabling it to market in Europe and Canada.

Halo Monitoring, a developer of wireless health remote monitoring technology, announced a deal with A&D Medical this past week. The partnership builds on Halo’s myHalo web-based personal health monitoring system by including Bluetooth-enabled weight scales and blood pressure cuffs.

Partners Healthcare's Center for the Connected Health also announced its recently spun out startup's name was SmartBeat. The startup was originally called Connected Health as a temporary designation. It's working with EMC and looking for other enterprises to equip with connected health devices for wellness programs.

Getting back to CES, MobiHealthNews is excited to have had a hand in crafting one of the Digital Health Summit's panels: "Patients On-the-Go: Wireless Healthcare is Here to Disrupt." The panel includes Jitterbug's CEO David Inns, MedApps Founder and CEO Kent Dicks, Bluetooth SIG's Executive Director Mike Foley and Qualcomm Vice President Don Jones. The event's organizers were kind enough to ask me to moderate the panel and I'm looking forward to a spirited discussion. Be sure to suggest questions or comments for the panel in the comments section below, and I'll report back with all the details.

Finally, if you have a hot tip for what's wireless health and news at CES this week, don't be shy...

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