Low cost personal medical tricorders have the potential to dramatically bring down the cost of health care, and avoid unnecessarily wasted time in hospitals, which is probably the XPRIZE Foundation has launched a competition for medical tricorders, where the winners will get 10 millions US dollars in funding. Scanadu Scout is one of the entry, and they currently have an indiegogo campaign, already oversubscribed, for their medical grade tricorder which gather data by placing it on your forehead for 10 seconds, and display medical data transferred via Bluetopoth Low Energy (Bluetooth SMART) on your iOS and smartphone.
The company did not disclose full specifications, but they still revealed the device runs 32-bit Micrium RTOS, which is already FDA approved (pre-market 510K notification and PMA approval), it supports Bluetooth 4.0 SMART, and a micro USB port is included to recharge the battery. I fired up few Google image searches to look for the Bt module used in the picture, but I could not find the exact module. It just looks a little similar to Laird Technology BL600 and RFDigital RFD51822 modules, both based on Nordic nRF51822, an SoC with Cortex M0 CPU, 256kB flash, 16kB RAM, and a 2.4GHz Bluetooth low energy transceiver.
The device is capable of measuring your heart rate, skin temperature, SpO2 (oxymetry), respiratory rate, blood pressure, ECG, and, believe it or not, emotional stress. It then display the results on your mobile device as shown in the 5 screenshots below.
The scout is not yet fully accurate and not FDA-approved, so it’s not to be considered a medical device just yet. Beside getting funds for production, this is actually one of the main purposes of this Indiegogo campaign, to have a few thousands people test the device, improve its accuracy, and eventually become FDA approved. Participating in the medical is not compulsory, and you’d to opt-in, and sign relevant documents if you wish to take part.
You can see how this all works in the video below.
If you’d like to get the device, you can pledge $199. Shipping is free to the US, $15 for Canada, and $25 for the rest of the world. There are also pledges for bundles, and a $529 “Makers” pledge which will allow you to participate in a workshop at NASA Research Park. You’ll have to be patient, as delivery is expected to take place in March 2014. Bear in mind Indiegogo and Kickstarter projects often have long delays,so you may have to wait for a whole year or more for the device.