The Know-how of Hearables in Healthcare

The Know-how of Hearables in Healthcare

Alex D'Souza, Healthcare Tech Outlook | Monday, December 10, 2018

A hearable utilizing wireless technology consists of additional biometric movement or proximity sensors that can help a smart device to gather information about a user’s behavior. It is also built with voice-enabled virtual assistants. Hearables such as smart hearing aids are already making a big impact on the healthcare industry by helping people with poor hearing to improve their conditions. Also, hearables are going to revolutionize the healthcare industry in several ways.

Heart rate monitors are slowly making an entry into hearable devices by built-in optical sensors. The hearable to monitor heart rate was the iriverON Bluetooth headphones introduced in 2013. Other headphone brands like Jabra Sport Pulse, Sony B-Trainer, SMS Audio Biosport, Huawei R1 Pro, and LG HR Earphone now feature heart rate tracking. Valencell, a U.S.-based company that develops biometric sensor technology for hearables, develops the biometric sensors for these brands.

Starkey Technologies’ new hearing aids called Livio can detect fall. They have the ability to track the activity and translate in real time. This kind of device can help elderly people tackle a range of health challenges with a simple touch of a button.

Hearables can also measure body temperature. Cosinuss’ Degree° is an assisting app that can track body temperature and provide treatment suggestions. Continuous monitoring of body temperature of the patients helps doctors to provide the needed care efficiently.

Hearables like Vi Sense and Vinchi have their own voice-enabled virtual assistants. Voice-based technology hearables can serve as caregivers to patients, reminding them to take their medicines, exercise, or visit their doctors.

Vi Sense’s Vi Ai Fitness Tracker headphones come with a real-time audio coach. Vi senses the users walk distance and heart rate in real-time. Vi coaches the users in real-time based on users biometrics, making way for a more dynamic and effective workout. Other hearables like Bragi’s Dash Pro and Vinchi allows users to listen to music while automatically tracking physical activity such as heart rate and calories burnt by the user.

In the future, hearables that are enhanced with AI will be able to know more than the words users speak by monitoring the entire body of the user continuously. The interesting and exciting innovations of hearables that are developed could greatly improve the quality of life or well-being for many people who need better healthcare.

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