The talk around usually revolves around devices like fitness trackers and smart watches.
Contenders in the race for the most innovative technology in quantified self don’t usually involve diapers.
Pixie Scientific, a startup from New York, is redefining the wearable market with its ‘Smart Diapers’ – which rely on data to monitor and detect health irregularities.
The data that these wearables measure is one of the most reliable when it comes to studying human health – urine. The technology is designed to analyse the urine from used diapers and scan it to detect possibilities of infections, kidney problems and even type 1 diabetes in infants.
Could this be the product that could establish predictive infant care?
While it looks like any other disposable diaper, the Smart Diaper has several non-toxic square panels on the outside of the diaper, which when wet, react to leukocytes, nitrates and other agents in the child’s urine that are useful in detecting the health of the child. The reaction causes the panels to change colour, and parents can use the accompanying mobile app to scan the QR code on the panel.
The app collects daily readings and over a period of time and checks for emerging patterns that may point to health anomalies. If it detects a problem, it alerts the parents to visit their paediatrician.
Smart Diapers – New Best Friend for Parents and Peadiatricians?
Due to its feature of daily tracking and storing of data from the child’s urine, the Smart Diaper can alert parents and doctors before any serious illness actually sets in. Pre-empting an illness based on data can go a long way in improving child care at the day-to-day level.
Though under testing now, once it is launched for sale, the Smart Diaper can play a significant role in providing better care in NICUs and peaditricians’ offices – which see the most number of infants who are in need of constant health monitoring.
The Smart Diaper is interesting in how it turns something as simple as a diaper into a device that brings together wearable tech and human data to create superior services in healthcare – a direction the wearable tech market will increasingly take in the near future.
This post is a part of our monthly People’s Insights brief for April – Part 2: The Mobile & Wearable Web