Mobile health or mhealth sector is trending towards integration of health monitoring devices like blood pressure monitors, ECG, etc with smart phones. iPhone is the most popular platform to bridge this gap as indicated by release of iHealth BP3 and Withing’s blood pressure monitors, which are compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
Mashable has provided a good overview by comparing iHealth BP3 BP monitor againts Withing’s. You can read the full review at: Two Blood Pressure Monitors for iPhone and iPad [Video]. I would like to provide synopsis based on the review with some questions boiling in my mind about future of these health gadgets interfacing with smart phones.
Cost: There is small difference in cost between the two with iHealth’s BP3 priced at $99.95 and Withing’s BP monitor costing $129.05.
Ease of use: This is a broad category, which could include form factor of the device, ability to share data through email and social networking sites like facebook, twitter and so on. I think ability to share data through different e-media is a basic requirement not added advantage for such gadgets.
iHealth’s BP3 has little edge over Withing’s BP monitor as per Mashable’s review. The docking style design of iHealth’s BP monitor offers good viewing angle, when BP is measured. Also, docking station can be used as stand alone charger for your iPhone, iPod or iPad. The blood pressure cuff from iHealth is more comfortable as compared to Withing’s.
Data Display: In my view this would be an evolving feature with smartphone health devices. Currently, apps for both show systolic...
and diastolic BP along with heart rate. Graphical display of current data with the historical data is a useful feature.
Overall: The both BP monitor devices are good with reasonably good accuracy. If you have other devices from Withing’s like body scale, you might want to have all your health data in same format and go with Withing’s BP or else, you can save thirty bucks by buying iHealth’s gadget.
Points to ponder
Hypertension is one of the most common medical problems, worldwide and it is essential to monitor the BP at regular interval. Does anybody know, how much are off the shelf BP monitors, successful in keeping interested people on track with their blood pressure? Smart phone technology, does offer an advantage though by keeping the data at a central place, but future will reveal the adoptability of smart phone technology.
Sharing your health data via social networking sites Facebook or Twitter may be a stretch for some people. But, if you are the one who is looking for motivation to control your BP, you can definitely share the data and let your well wishers keep you on track.