Ford Developing Mobile Healthcare Apps
Mobile healthcare is taking a huge step forward with some help from automobile maker Ford Motors. The company has announced that it is developing voice-controlled wireless technology that allows drivers to connect to various health monitoring technology and services.
With Ford’s expertise being on making vehicles, it is tapping the resources of medical device maker Medtronic, mobile health vendor WellDoc, and health analytics provider SDI Health, according to a featureon ComputerWorld. Ford is using its factory-installed, in-car communications and entertainment system SYNC technology. The Bluetooth connectivity, voice control and cloud-based services of the Ford SYNC system was developed with Microsoft.
According to Paul Mascarenas, chief technology officer at Ford’s Research and Innovation division, “Ford SYNC is well known in the industry and with consumers as a successful in-car infotainment system, but we want to broaden the paradigm, transforming SYNC into a tool that can also help improve people’s lives as well as the driving experience.”
In the early stages, Ford is focusing on two health concerns — diabetes and asthma or allergies. According to data from the American Diabetes Association, almost 26 million adults and children in the U.S. have diabetes. According to data from the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, about 60 million Americans have asthma or allergies.
Ford is looking into developing other health and wellness technologies related to heart rate, relaxation and stress reduction.