Qualcomm has announced it will form a new subsidiary, called Qualcomm Life, to manage the development of the company’s mobile health platforms.
The new company, formerly known as Qualcomm Wireless Health, will focus on connecting mobile devices through machine-to-machine (M2M) technology. M2M connects remote-monitoring devices through wireless connections.
Qualcomm announced the new subsidiary at the mHealth Summit in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 5.
“Qualcomm Life was founded, in part, to assist medical-device manufacturers who approached Qualcomm for help when their own wireless connectivity attempts became untenable due to technology selection errors, unscalable deployment models and prohibitively high operational support costs,” Rick Valencia, vice president and general manager of Qualcomm Life, said in a statement.
In addition to the new subsidiary, Qualcomm introduced 2net, a cloud platform that transmits biometric data from patients to physicians and caregivers.
The 2net platform will also allow doctors and patients to transfer, store, convert and display data generated by various medical devices. Qualcomm is demonstrating 2net at the mHealth Summit.
“Our services, including integration on the 2net platform, remove the burden for medical-device manufacturers of a large technical development effort, providing integration with mobile carriers and solving the operational complexities of supporting wireless medical device data in the field,” Valencia said.
Users can access the 2net platform through the 2net hub. The hub works with 2G; 3G; Bluetooth; Bluetooth Low Energy; WiFi; and ANT+, a local-area radio protocol.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has listed 2net as an approved Medical Device Data System (MDDS) that supports regulatory requirements such as the ISO 13485 quality-management standard.
The 2net platform and hub will help doctors and patients monitor chronic diseases, according to Don Jones, vice president of global strategy and market development for Qualcomm Life.
“We believe the 2net platform and hub’s promotion of medical-device connectivity will enable a sea change in health care, where we observe stressed medical systems burdened by a mounting prevalence of chronic disease,” Jones said in a statement. “Already, several members of the 2net ecosystem are able to provide remote-monitoring functionality for chronic disease management, enhancing the quality of care for their patients.”
Doctors can use 2net to access biometric data that a patient uploads from a mobile phone, other cellular devices or application programming interfaces (APIs) connected to the customer service platform. 2net encrypts the data before transmitting it over a cellular connection.
Companies developing mobile devices for 2net include A&D Medical, AirStrip Technologies, AT&T and Nonin Medical.
Meanwhile, on Dec. 5 A&D announced that its medical devices and the Tactio TargetWeight Pro application would work with the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.
TargetWeight is a dashboard application that keeps track of weight goals and health conditions such as diabetes and metabolic syndrome, which are medical disorders that together could increase the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
2net will work with diabetes management systems like Entra Health Systems’ MyGlucoHealth Wireless Bluetooth blood glucose meter, which allows patients to transmit blood glucose readings using mobile phones.
In addition, Qualcomm has established a $100 million Qualcomm Life Fund to develop wireless health services and push for their adoption. Investments will focus on areas such as personal wellness and disease management. Qualcomm will also invest in biosensors for chronic disease and wellness, remote diagnosis for independent living and health care analytics software.
Qualcomm has also funded a study on how mobile applications affect medication adherence. The Vocel Pill Phone application, which measures how well patients follow their medication schedules, incorporates Qualcomm’s chipsets.