As the type and choices of wearable health tech devices proliferate, consumers face a choice of buying from a variety of brands for tracking different biomarkers or sticking with one brand. The latter choice can be limiting, especially with smaller companies that only offer a single type of device. Picking a company with a range of devices that can include a single unifying app that collects and reports for all its products can sound like a smart move. But what if you already started with another brand or find one you want to add to your wearable arsenal at a later date? Your date could end up trapped in proprietary silos.
Withings, the French health tech pioneer purchased by Nokia earlier this year, has updated the Withings Health Mate app to work with data from multiple sources instead of Withing’s own branded health tech wearables. Even if you don’t own any Withings devices or any other brand health tech device, you can use the Withings Health Mate as a standalone app. You can manually enter weight, body fat, and blood pressure. You can also use your smartphone to track your activity via the phone’s accelerometer and your heart rate using the phone’s camera.
In addition, Withings Health Mate can now link with Apple Health and Google Fit as well as data from MyFitnessPal, Nest, Nike+, and RunKeeper. It appears that Withings is open to integrating with other fitness and health wearables, an aggressive and positive indication from one of the biggest names in the category. If cross-brand integration become #nss common, arguably all will benefit, customers because they can freely choose from various brands and manufacturers because they won’t be shut out by consumers’ previous choices.