Over the holiday, I happened upon a new project on Indiegogo, the new wifi blood pressure cuff by BlipCare and I had to check it out. Turns out that Blip is a new subsidiary of Carematrix, a great device company that has been working with HealthVault for some time. So I signed up for their “just in time for Christmas” deal, got my unit running and have been totally impressed so far.
As regular readers know, I love my Withings scale. What Withings figured out with the scale was that being truly wireless in the home, the scale can live in the bathroom and be a totally natural part of day to day life … very different than the “plug me into the USB port of your computer” models of days gone by.
Blip has taken that same approach with their BP cuff … with fantastic results. The unit stands completely alone in the home, not tethered to a computer or even a phone, which makes a huge difference. Ours is on the side table next to the couch — I slip on the cuff, press the button, and I’m done. The unit is absolutely perfect for giving to an elderly parent that you’re trying to monitor, because you can manage the setup and they never have to do anything but maybe replace the batteries once in a (long, it seems) while.
Blip has also upped the ante on the bootstrap/setup process. The unit includes a built-in wifi access point, so you don’t even need to wire it up to a computer to get started. You just use your own computer’s wifi to connect to the BP unit itself, use your web browser to tell it about your home network, and you’re done. Super-convenient.
Blip has add some other great innovations, too — particularly their built-in alerts and reminders that you can configure at their website and are delivered to your phone. Their initial research shows that these things really can keep people engaged, and having them as part of the package is a great plus. And OF COURSE it’s HealthVault-connected, so combine it with something like AHA Heart360 and you’ve got a great all-up self-management solution.
They’ve also got a really nice looking scale — haven’t picked up one of those yet but it’s on my list. What is so fantastic here is that the innovation is clearly moving beyond what is “cool” into what really works and can fit into peoples’ lives. That is the kind of innovation we need right now.
Congratulations to Sukhwant, Deepak, Preety and the rest of the BlipCare team!