Japanese mobile operator NTT Docomo just announced a new health and wellness service, called i-Bodymo, that is set to launch on its network next week. Docomo describes i-Bodymo as a mobile health support service that includes a full suite of wellness applications.
i-Bodymo enables users to monitor their daily physical activity and food intake, which is used to provide health tips and advice to the users. The service includes a pedometer function and a location based exercise tracker that records distances and times the user jogs or walks. The service uses an accelerometer embedded into the phone to test "body reflex" and "balance."
On the diet front, i-Bodymo graphs the user's caloric intake and burn based on what information the user logged into the system. It then makes suggestions for how the user might improve on activity level or diet. While users have to pay a separate data fee for the amount of mobile data used, the cost of i-Bodymo is about $1.70 a month.
While there has been little movement on the longtime rumor that Japan's NTT Docomo, might bring its brand to the U.S. and offer Docomo wireless service over T-Mobile USA’s or AT&T’s network, such a move could shake up the current mobile health services space. Last September reports in Japan Today and the Japan Times both claimed that the carrier was interested in launching its advanced mobile Internet services in the U.S. market.
Docomo announced its set of “Lifestyle” phones last October -- here's a video (English subtitles) that demos a health-focused phone.
For more on i-Bodymo, read the NTT Docomo site here