CES 2016 : Health tech. And not just fitness bands

This year it feels like it’s actually happening: consumer focused health tech is happening.

And yes, fitness bands are as plentiful as TVs, but this year it seems the focus has moved – ever so slightly – away from merely fitness, and more towards health.

Much of how it’s marketed ends up being a question of regulatory hurdles, but it’s exciting to see the shift.

Check out your hemoglobin? No problem. Buy a relatively inexpensive device – Embar (from Ceracor) and enjoy non-invasive readings, and results/graphs etc on your smartphone. It currently seems marketed to athletes, rather than as a medical instrument but perhaps before too long this sore of technology could help millions with renal, hepatic and other chronic conditions.

Check your wriggling infant’s temperature and have the hope of it being a reliable reading ? The newly announced Thermo from Withings may be up your street with 16 sensors taking 4000 measurements in 2 seconds (and presumably some relatively intelligent software engine to interpret all that).

There’s also an actual blood pressure watch-looking device from Omron. It’s not using PST – which we have to hope can be the future – but that means it’s legal and hopefully accurate!

And for all I tire somewhat of the pedometer type bands, the downward trend in pricing is exciting. It gets people to understand the benefits of having continuous data about their wellbeing. It gives company the revenue, an ability to scale , recruit talent, and ultimately generate more specialised products which may not otherwise have been possible.

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