Technology is the great equalizer. Low-cost, mass-produced personal computers ushered in a revolution of data processing that made information management more efficient for everyone from large corporations to the average household. And in spite of the fact that we’re in the early stages of wearable Health Tech devices, suppliers continue to produce new and affordable building blocks that will make it easier for developers to experiment with designs for new products and services. One of the newest and most exciting entries in this category is the BITalino (r)evlotuion that is in the middle of a Kickstarter campaign to raise $50,000.
The project calls for building a smaller, more capable version of the existing BITalino board. The new product will be about two-inches square, and will incorporate sensors, a processor, and a Bluetooth LE transceiver. The device will be designed to sell in configurations starting at less than $100. The fully configured board will have five sensors and sell for less than $150. It will include electrical activity from your heart (ECG), from your muscles (EMG), and your skin (EDA), as well as an accelerometer and light sensor. The board will also have a digital-analog converter (DAC) to control other devices, an LED, and a power connection that includes a built-in charger. Plus the design and supporting software are all open source. The makers are also working with Printoo to develop a version produced on a paper-thin, flexible circuit board, which will make it easier to design products that conform to a curved surface, such as a wrist.
The BITalino (r)evolution will have a modular design, so it will be easy to incorporate other sensors as they become available, or to have multiple sensors of a certain type. This flexible platform could help developers jump-start new products, and help them come to market much faster and at a much lower cost.