This week MobiHealthNews interviewed Marvell co-founder Weili Dai to discuss the company's recently announced platform for medical tablets, Moby MED. To clarify other reports about Moby MED, no it is not a tablet -- Moby MED is a platform that Marvell's partners can use to make tablets for medical use cases. In that regard, Moby MED is like Intel's Mobile Clinical Assistant (MCA) spec, but Marvell's Dai believes its OEM partners will make tablets for use by consumers looking for a telehealth-centered device, too. Dai said Marvell's partners will likely unveil the first tablets based on Moby MED at the beginning of 2011. (Expect them in time for the Consumer Electronics Show, which as we noted after attending, is growing its focus on consumer health.)
Dai imagines Moby MED-based tablets could find themselves mounted on the wall in care facilities, in the hands of a clinician or for use at-home by patients conducting video conferencing with their care providers. Dai calls the medical vertical a "tremendous" opportunity.
Moby MED calls for 1080p HD video camera with support for Flash playback -- two features missing from Apple's iPad. The processor also powers multitasking with support for a peripheral monitor. The platform also will enabled Moby MED-based tablets to serve as a hotspot for up to eight devices.
"Medical devices are typically really expensive products," Dai said. "We want to make an impact in the healthcare industry by bringing the best -- differentiated -- connected device that can get the job done, but is still affordable to everybody."
Marvell is currently working to bring together a group of medical applications to bundle together and offer as a suite of must-have medical apps to its Moby MED tablet makers. More than anything else, this suite of medical-specific applications will distinguish the Moby MED offering from other tablets Marvell is enabling with its Moby platform.
Dai's statement in the Moby MED product announcement perhaps sums up her vision for Moby MED best:
"Marvell's Moby MED tablet platform is designed to allow physicians to consult with patients remotely in real-time, allow consumers to manage their own health histories in a highly secure, encrypted environment, make it possible to send and read high-resolution diagnostic imagery and give consumers access to online medical information in a light-weight, long-running device," Marvell explains in a press release. Company co-founder Weili Dai goes so far as to say, "I believe the Moby MED solution could ignite a telehealth revolution in America."