Is there value in the data gathered by wearables?

Hello and thanks for reading (or watching),

One of the hottest trends in both consumer goods and technology is the smart wearables (namely smartwatches) that gather different biometric data.  These devices allow you to know about your heart rate, how you are sleeping and in some cases, more advanced metrics like your blood oxygen level.  In addition, there are a ton of other home-based devices that let you gather information like your blood pressure.

Once you have gathered the data, it is brought to a cloud-based software engine that does it magic by putting the data into a format that you can see……you can see how you are doing now, how you have done over time and it often even offers suggestions to improve your readings.

 

This all sounds wonderful….but does it actually make a difference in your overall health?

 

I think it does, and here are a few reasons why:

 

1) Trend data can be useful

Taking your blood pressure or looking at your heart rate once gives some indication as to how you are doing now, but if you took it daily under similar conditions for a month, it would show a better baseline as to how you are doing.  This trend can show how a new exercise program, medication or even stress from a new job is helping/hurting your health.

 

2) Data can be shared

Most of the software programs allow you to share data with a loved one or with your doctor.  This allows them to keep a closer eye on your health, alerting them of changes that may need to be addressed.

 

3) Doctor’s offices are the worst place to get an accurate reading

Even if we are healthy, many of us feel a bit uptight at the doctors office, so the readings from your Blood Pressure and Heart rate are sure to be elevated.  This may give the medical professional the idea that you potentially have hypertension when you may in fact be fine.

4) Insurance companies seem to believe in them

Insurance companies are the “Moneyball” of the business world, meaning that they are far more data driven than anyone else.  Insurance companies are starting to offer reduced rates for members who use wearables, so they much also believe in the power of the data.

The Bottom Line
Gathering all of the data is only useful in two cases….if you are consistent enough to gather the data each day for at least a month or two to get a good baseline and if you are willing to act on that data.  So, if you have an elevated Blood Pressure, the data will only help if you are willing to change your lifestyle to lower it.  If you are, this data can be life-saving, but if you are not, you might as well not use a wearable at all……

 

Novotech Recruits New Sales Director

Ottawa, ON, June 7st , 2018  Novotech Technologies, a leading distributor of Machine-to-Machine (M2M) / Internet of Things (IoT) products, services and solutions, is pleased to announce the recent appointment of Chris M. Walsh to the position of Senior Sales Director effective June 1st 2018.

Chris brings a long track record of success in the cellular industry.  With over 15 years of Sales, Marketing and Business Development experience, Walsh will be a great addition to Novotech’s growing sales team. In his new role at Novotech, Walsh will work closely with our Reseller Channel and vendor partners to help drive new IoT-based business sales.

“This is an important hire for our company”, says Alex Aubie, Vice President of Sales and Channels at Novotech. “Chris brings incredible market   knowledge and sales expertise to Novotech. His experience in the industry will support Novotech’s commitment to grow its reseller base through knowledgeable salespeople who are focused on our channel strategy”, says Aubie.

For the past three years in his role as Sales Director at FreeWave Technologies, Walsh was successful in increasing both his sales  and  the number of channel partners in his territory.

Prior to his time at Freewave, Walsh was key member of the Wireless solutions sales team at GetWireless, CalAmp and MultiTech systems performing roles ranging from Account Management to Channel Development Manager to Area Sales Manager.

“The world of M2M/IoT offers an unparalleled level of growth, not seen during my years in the business”, says Walsh. “Novotech has always been a leader in delivering M2M/IoT products and solutions to this market. I look forward to being part of such a strong, dedicated and accomplished group.” 

To contact Chris, please visit his LinkedIn profile

About Novotech Technologies:
Through strategic partnerships with many of the world’s most advanced Internet of Things (IoT) manufacturers, Novotech Technologies is a leading distributor of IoT products, services and solutions. Established in 2001, Novotech is headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario, with offices throughout Canada and the United States. Visit us @ www.novotech.com | Follow us on Twitter @NovotechM2M

 

IoT, gambling and the Supreme Court

Hello and thanks for reading (sorry, no video on this one).

Recently, the US Supreme Court struck down a previous federal law that prohibited sports gambling.  In a landmark ruling, the court struck down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act which barred state-authorized sports gambling in every other state besides Nevada.

What implications will this have on sports?  A lot, I am sure, but I am only looking at one angle here.  IoT was already starting to play a big role in sports anyways (we have covered this before on a few previous blog posts about how it was changing sports like Basketball, Golf and Tennis).

I am wondering if it will change things a bit more now……let me explain.

IoT is about information and more importantly, what you can do with that information to make educated decisions.  Sports tends to produce a lot of data, ranging from simple math (like how many touchdowns a quarterback threw) to the more complex (some of the stats now are probably Ph.D level math).  Smart gamblers use this data, in conjunction with their own experience, to formulate their bets.

One of the expected types of bets that is expected to become commonplace (especially among millennials) is the “in-game bet”.  Now, most wagers are placed on something that has to do with the final score (whether it be the game winner or some variation on a team winning by a certain number of points).  In-game wagering has more of a “right now” kind of feel….will a player make this shot, will a team score so many points in this half/quarter, things like that.

Gamblers may look for a new way to gain an edge, especially on in-game bets, and I think IoT can play a big role in this.  Think about it….knowing that a baseball pitcher’s curveball is not moving as much as earlier in the game may be an indication that he is about to get hit hard and lose the game…..a quarterback’s spirals not spinning as tightly may indicate that their shoulder injury is worse than expected…..and, a change in temperature at a game may favour a team that plays more of its games in a cold environment as opposed to a team that plays in California.  

I think you get the picture…will these pieces of information truly make someone a better gambler?  I doubt it, but in the hands of some of the more expert ones, I think it will help.  As part of making the game more attractive to viewers, I think we will see more IoT-based stats emerge.

An important IoT question…..should you build, buy or integrate?

Thanks for watching (or reading),

Ok, you’ve decided to add the power of IoT to your products or services.  You are looking forward to real-time communication, increased productivity for your team and a bunch of billing flexibility to differentiate your business.

So, let’s get started.

Hold up for a second…..you need to decide if you are going to Build, Buy or Integrate first?  Yes, there are three different ways to connect your solution and each have their own pros and cons.

Here is a quick overview:

Build 
This is where you decide that you need to build a brand new device for connectivity.

The breakdown:
• Pros - You get the lowest per unit cost, maximum flexibility and a unique device that none of your competitors have
• Cons - It will be a costly venture (in terms of Engineering cost and certifications), there will also be on-going testing/design work and it may take you up to 24 months to get to market
• Ideal for - Those who are familiar with the process of building electronic equipment, have plenty of resources (or are willing to work with a design house) and those doing a lot of units per year (think a minimum of 5000 as a starting point)

Buy 
This is where you buy a product that is already certified and ready to go

The breakdown:
• Pros - You get to market quickly, have little (or none) certification costs and can integrate quickly into existing software programs
• Cons - This convenience comes with a cost, as this is the highest price per unit and you also are using a product that your competitors can buy (reducing any advantage)
• Ideal for - Those looking to get to market quickly, those who are not doing a lot of units per year or those who either don’t have the internal expertise (or can’t spare it) to build or Integrate.

Integrate 
This is where you add IoT connectivity directly onto your systemboard, usually in the form of a cellular module or an embedded modem.

The breakdown:
• Pros - You don’t have to redesign a brand new product, you get a very low cost per unit for connectivity and it does not take up a lot of space (so can go into most products)
• Cons - Like the build option, this work does require certain expertise, can take much longer to get to market and depending on how long your product is in the field, it may require you to redesign before your product is end of life.