Wearable sensors for senior citizens

Sensors for SeniorsThe world’s ageing population has sparked numerous innovations aimed at the older end of the market.


Japan’s top telecoms company, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation, has developed a wristwatch-like device to monitor the wellbeing of the elderly.


The device, worn like a watch, features a built-in camera, microphone and accelerometer, which measures the pace and direction of hand movements to determine what the wearer is doing.


Plans for commercial use are still undecided, but similar sensors are being tested around the world as potential tools for elderly care.


In the United States, the Institute on Ageing at the University of Virginia has been carrying out studies in practical applications of what it calls “body area sensor networks” to promote senior independent living.


According to the institute, wearable sensors should be easy to use, unobtrusive, ergonomic and even stylish.


Could this kind of technology be the foundation of an Australian start-up that caters for elderly or disabled customers?


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