Samsung Simband wearable to encourage third gen monitors

samsung simbandThis week Samsung unveiled a new wearable health tracking device called the Simband – nothing to do with the fictional adventurous sailor, that’s Sinbad. This is designed to be worn around your wrist and can take all kinds of readings about your body from a relatively teeny tiny package.

At an event in San Francisco on Wednesday, Samsung unveiled the Simband, a wearable device which is dotted with tiny sensors capable of monitoring heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, and other data points usually measured only at a doctor’s office.

Samsung also revealed details of Sami, short for Samsung Architecture Multimedia Interactions, a cloud-based open software platform that will work alongside the Simband to track and store your data.

According to the Samsung team, the device will be Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled, come with a magnetic battery charger that you can wear when you sleep and possibly give wearer’s a “wellness score” throughout the day. None of these features are particularly ground-breaking, but could certainly give some of the big players in the activity tracking space a run for their money.

It takes these measurements continuously and uploads the data to a cloud service, where it can be analysed. At least that’s the plan.

samsung simband wideRight now the Simband isn’t a shelf-ready product, but a prototype. And unlike its main rival in the smartphone market, Samsung is willingly offering the Simband as a platform on which others can build the next generation of wearable devices.

Yup, Samsung didn’t launch a product. It launched a concept. Rather than give a typical keynote Samsung Electronics president Young Sohn said the company is putting up $50 million for innovators who can figure out how best to improve personal health through sensors and algorithms using the Simband as a launch point.

The approach is a far cry from Apple’s intensely secretive development process, where products emerge from a cocoon fully formed, as if they were always meant to be.

It’s now all eyes on Tim Cook and company to show their closed system of innovation still has the power to invent new markets.

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