Consumer

By Jonah Comstock September 13, 2018
Yesterday, Apple dropped a bombshell on the digital health world, as it is prone to do in its highly-produced launch events. While the announcement included fall detection on the Apple Watch and some improvements to heart rate monitoring, the headline was definitely the announcement that the Apple Watch Series 4 would contain an FDA-cleared ECG sensor. While much of the reaction has been positive...
By Dave Muoio September 13, 2018
Following in the footsteps of its parent company, Instagram is looking reduce its potential role in the ongoing opioid epidemic. Whenever a user searches a drug or substance-related term on the platform, they will now be served a popup that includes a link to addiction and drug misuse resources. Should users click through the popup alert, Instagram redirects to a webpage asking users whether they...
By Dave Muoio September 13, 2018
Hurricane season is swinging into full gear again as this week’s natural threat, Hurricane Florence, makes landfall in the US Southeast. Between the gusting winds and “catastrophic flash flooding” heralded by meteorologists, the Category 2 storm threatens to leave emergency responders and local health care systems overwhelmed. Fortunately, these groups will have some support. Much like in storms...
By Dave Muoio September 12, 2018
From Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica woes to news of the first deaths attributable to autonomous cars, the tech industry has lately found itself engulfed in moral controversies. Unfortunately, the health tech sector is no different. Just this year, multiple consumer exercise apps revealed classified GPS and identifying data through their APIs, genetic testing companies continue to grapple with...
Apple Watch with ECG feature
By Jonah Comstock September 12, 2018
Well, we finally know what cardiac project Apple was talking with the FDA about two years ago. Apple Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams announced today at Apple's special event in Cupertino that the company has received FDA clearance for both an atrial fibrillation-detecting algorithm and an ECG that will be built into the company's Series 4 Apple Watch, due to start shipping September 21. ...
FDA approved tech collage
By Dave Muoio September 12, 2018
Brainstorming, smart design, and clinical validation are all vital steps toward the deployment of any new health technology, but without regulatory approval many of the most groundbreaking innovations will never have a chance to make an impact on patients and consumers. In the US, these processes could see some shakeup in the future — FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb has been consistently...

Photo credit: The Royal Foundation

By Laura Lovett September 11, 2018
The British royal family is now turning its attention to online resources as a means of promoting mental wellbeing in the workplace. Earlier this week Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, launched Mental Health at Work, which aims to help link employers and employees to information and resources about mental health. The platform is supported by the Royal Foundation, a charity run by the junior...
By Laura Lovett September 10, 2018
From ancestry to wine pallet preferences, consumer genomics have fueled both popular curiosity and public discourse. Now MyVytalics, a relative newcomer in the space that focuses on healthy aging, is teaming up with major player in the consumer genomics space Helix to release a new personal genomics app that will look at how genes play in to sleep patterns and nutrition. In the future, the two...
By Jonah Comstock September 10, 2018
San Francisco-based Nima Labs (formerly known as 6Sensor Labs) has launched the Nima Peanut Sensor, the second in a planned line of connected devices that can scan foods for evidence of a particular allergen. Users can put a small amount of food in a canister and run it through the small, triangular hardware device to obtain a reading of "peanut" or "no peanut." “Millions of people with peanut...
By Dave Muoio September 7, 2018
Online refractive eye exam company Opternative has launched a voice-activated, smartphone-only version of its digital eye exam. The product is a complement to the company’s existing exam, which requires both a smartphone and a separate computer. “To build upon our vision of making eye care available to anyone, anywhere, anytime, we built the first web-based, conversational test that can be taken...