No man is an island, and if designed properly, few wearable Health Tech devices should live in isolation, either. Part of the benefit of these new devices comes from being able to aggregate data from many different sources for each individual, and then apply Big Data analytics to identify possible areas of concern both for the individual and for the larger population as a whole. One key to realizing these benefits will be to make sure that the data is recorded accurately and conveniently. The more that the user has to fuss with the process to make it happen, the less likely it will be done reliably.
A new report by Tractica looks at the growth of home health hubs. These are gateways that rely on wireless data transfer to aggregate information from wearable and fixed location Health Tech devices in the home. They automate the process of sending this data to the Cloud for storage, sharing, analysis, and reporting. The main drivers for these systems are the need to reduce healthcare costs — especially for those with chronic health conditions — and to improve treatment outcomes.
Tractica’s analysts estimate that this market segment will grow from its modest levels of about 150,000 standalone units in 2014 to nearly 1.6 million units a year by 2020. That volume pales in comparison with this year’s worldwide television shipments of more than 230 million, but does predict healthy growth for this segment. The more we can automate the data collection and the analysis that can produce helpful alerts and other reports, the faster the adoption rate will grow, especially if this function can be integrated with other useful operations as part of a connected home strategy.