Remember the iShoe? Last summer a NASA intern and MIT graduate student invented an insole with sensors that monitored and transmitted information about a person's balance, which provided for an early warning system before someone falls. At the time iShoe was in a pilot phase with about 60 trial users, but now, according to OhioHealth, which is testing the technology, iShoe will commercially launch next year. Price tag? $100. Better yet, OhioHealth reports it should be covered by most insurance companies.
Erez Lieberman's iShoe contains pressure sensors, a built-in memory and a wireless Bluetooth radio that transmits the data to a laptop or mobile phone. Lieberman planned to eventually have that data routed online for a balance assessment, but Ohio Health did not report on whether the assessment functionality is live yet. Future iterations of iShoe also hope to include some way to stimulate feet in attempt to avoid a fall or sound an alarm that could help the wearer realize they are about to fall down.
According to the Alanta-based Center for Disease Control, one in three people 65-years-old and older fall each year, and more than 300,000 hip fractures occur each year, mostly caused by falls. Also, one in five people die within a year of breaking their hip. Read more over at OhioHealth and watch this CNN video about iShoe from last year below: