Indian researcher develops affordable wearable device to track status of heart

Written by PTI | Lausanne | Updated: Nov 3 2014, 17:34pm hrs
Health checkSmartCardia's Inner You is a wearable device that helps the user to track and manage his or her physical as well as emotional health.
Indian researcher develops new device to track status of heart

From M I Jehangir

Lausanne, Nov 2 (PTI) An Indian researcher here has developed a wearable device that he claims can help one track the status of heart, both in medical and emotional terms.

"The Inner You (INYU) is a wearable device that helps the user to track and manage his or her physical as well as emotional health," Srinivasan Murali, co-founder and CEO of the Switzerland-based SmartCardia told PTI.

The SmartCardia technology is based on several years of research from the Embedded Systems Laboratory at the Ecole Polytechnique Fdrale de Lausanne (EPFL) here, Murali said.

"I hope the device will be highly beneficial for India. It can be used to track Electrocardiogram (ECG), breathing and key vital signs of users, so that they can get timely feedback from the doctor," he said.

"The user can see the signals immediately on his or her mobile phone. It can also be used for managing a healthy lifestyle, as it tracks the emotional and physical health aspects, such as the stress level, body fat and physical activity," Murali said.

The developer of the device intends to price it around Rs 9,000, so that tracking one's complete health becomes affordable.

Explaining the working of the device, Murali said INYU obtains key physiological signals from the body like ECG, breathing, skin conductance and physical activity by a simple touch that give a complete picture of the body-mind health.

The combination of the biological signals is used to infer the overall physical and emotional state of the user.

"For example, the variation in time intervals between heartbeats is related to the stress level. The conductivity of the skin, reflecting the amount of sweat-induced moisture on the skin is determined by the emotional intensity, while breathing is a good indicator of the activity of the autonomic nervous system," Murali said.

By combining these indicators, he said the stress level, concentration level and mood are inferred by advanced machine learning algorithms on the device.

"This allows managing stress and quantifying yoga and meditation techniques. New breathing games can be implemented as well," he said.

Murali said the INYU sends the signals in real-time to smartphone and other smart objects through Bluetooth 4.0.

"Mobile and computer games can become immersive. Imagine a user having to hold his breath when jumping into the water on the screen. Games can also be personalised for the user," he said.

The INYU signals can also control smart lights, music and other smart objects. The breathing or emotion state can be used control the colour or intensity of lights or the music can change according to physical activity or mood, he said.