Not surprisingly, Microsoft Research is investigating how to integrate mobile health projects running on Windows Mobile powered phones into the company's personal health information platform, HealthVault. The company's director of technology strategy for Asia, Eric Chang, told PC World in a recent interview:
"One of those projects, an application called MyLife for Windows Mobile phones, could help a user log health metrics like blood pressure and weight, and monitor daily activities including exercise, walking and eating. Ongoing work on the application could allow it to help personal logs using built-in devices on a phone like its camera, its accelerometer and its microphone," according to the report.
"The 'dream' is that a user could photograph each meal with their phone to have the application return data such as caloric content, food group and allergy information for each item on a plate... To make that easier, a phone could also get the information by scanning a tag attached to a meal."
Chang also noted that the phone's accelerometers could help determine a users step count for the day and that the phone's microphone could provide clues about the users' activities and surroundings. Using a phone's microphone to listen in on a users' activities sounds like an invasion of privacy, but perhaps, given Chang's focus on Asia, his comments are more relevant to potential users on that continent?
The PC World report also delves into Microsoft's plans for the Xbox in healthcare -- worth a read.