Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you

Withings builds the Star Trek tricorder dream with BeamO

A gadget that can check your health and make it easier to diagnose your condition? It could be the next product you consider.

Convergence is one of those things that we’re so used to seeing, it can be all too easy to forget how simultaneously clever and creative companies can be when they’re making it happen.

Your phone is possibly the greatest example of this, bringing together phone, camera, music player, web browser, emailer, calculator, calendar, and so on, and there are other devices in your life that qualify, as well.

Health gadgets are getting there, too, thanks to improvements in technology. You can now track your heart health from your wrist, while stepping on a scale can give you an understanding of your heart’s rough age, and more is on the way.

In fact, if you want to see a vision of the future, you might want to check out what French health tech company Withings has been cooking up in the BeamO, a gadget that sounds so sci-fi, it may be difficult to believe.

While the name is a little weird-o, the idea seems like something out of fiction, delivering a multiscope that can combine several health metric sensors in one place, providing an SpO2 blood pulse oximeter, stethoscope, thermometer, and electrocardiograph in the one device.

BeamO won’t be something you wear, but rather something you hold and use, gripping the remote control-shaped device and letting it take your readings for pulse and ECG, while holding the device to your chest to let it hear your lungs and heart via the digital stethoscope found onboard. The temperature checking technology will use a contact-less approach, as well, a concept Withings has dabbled in before with a seperate device.

In short, BeamO appears a little like a medical tricorder on Star Trek, bundling several health metric checks in the one compact device so that you can have a small report made in an app, allowing you to send it on your GP, doctor, or medical centre.

It’s worth noting that all of these metrics have been found in a Withings device at least once before. The stethoscope was found in the most recent blood pressure monitor, while the SpO2 and ECG tech have been found in the Withings ScanWatch models.

Where BeamO differs, however, is that this appears to be more of a multi-user gadget, allowing you to use it for more than one member of the family, and like its scales, synchronising the results with individual family members.

“BeamO will revolutionise the measurement of the core vitals carried out during medical visits from the comfort of one’s own home,” said Eric Carreel, Founder and President of Withings.

“This crucial data will provide a vital overview of overall health or warning signs of potential areas of concern,” he said. “Instead of measuring these stats a couple of times a year in a clinical setting, it will be possible to assess them every day,” he said.

The idea has merit, particularly in a post-covid world where telehealth has become something of a norm, making it possible for families to get a diagnosis without necessarily setting foot outside their home.

You’ll still need to talk to your GP about getting this data to them, but it will mean having more than just your feeling when you think something is wrong, and providing a little bit of extra data upon visiting, virtual or otherwise.

Withings expects release later this year, priced at $449.99 in Australia, which is more than we can say for Withings’ gadget announced at CES last year, a urinary checking piece of technology that is still yet to be released. Withings told Pickr that the U-Scan is still on the cards for a release this year, but has no other information. We’ll let you know if that changes.

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