Friday, February 11, 2011

Mobile Medication Reminder Application

3G Technology Well Accepted among Hypertensive Patients in Underserved Communities.

3G handsets and the Pill Phone (News - Alert) mobile medication reminder application are well accepted among patients participating in George Washington University and Wireless Reach Pill Phone Research Study.

The announcement was made by George Washington University Medical Center, One Economy, Cricket Communications, VOCEL, and Qualcomm’s (News  - Alert) Wireless Reach initiative at a mHealth seminar hosted by the George Washington Center for Global Health and the Department of Emergency Medicine.  
“3G wireless technologies offer new opportunities to communicate with patients and the potential to improve health outcomes,” said Dean Brenner, vice president of government affairs for Qualcomm, in a statement.
Thanks to the grant from Qualcomm's Wireless Reach initiative and contributions from One Economy, Cricket Communications (News - Alert) and VOCEL, the George Washington University Medical Center conducted and analyzed a seven-month study to measure the efficiency of the Pill Phone application to improve medication adherence among hypertensive patients.
The Pill Phone study was aimed at analyzing how wireless technology can engage patients, improve health outcomes and reduce health costs. Subjects included 50 Medicaid patients who were recruited from the internal medicine, renal/hypertension and cardiology clinics of The George Washington University Medical Center in Washington.
Hypertension affects more than 65 million adults in the United States and the main reason is poor adherence to blood pressure medications. African Americans are two to four times more likely to have kidney disease than their white counterparts due to uncontrolled hypertension. Hypertensive patients have other issues requiring additional medications and this forces them to take up to 10 pills a day.
“High blood pressure and diabetes are the leading causes of kidney disease, and Washington, D.C. has some of the highest rates of end-stage kidney disease in the nation,” said Richard Katz, director of the division of cardiology at The George Washington University Hospital. “The importance of the Pill Phone Research Study is that it offers a model for disease self-management that can be applied to at-risk communities.”
Each hypertensive patient received a 3G wireless handset pre-loaded with the Pill Phone application. The Pill Phone provides visual and audible medication dosage reminders, tracking and storage of dosage records, image displays of prescription pills and information about potential drug side effects.
VOCEL announced the Pill Phone application in 2008 for three major U.S. wireless operators. Pill Phone enables healthcare providers to remotely monitor patient adherence through a secure Web site, according to company officials.source

3G rollouts could change dynamics

INDIAN TELECOM: MNP initial data suggests it is not a game-changer; 3G rollouts could change dynamics

Only 1.7m subscribers (0.23% of wireless subscriber base) requested for porting during the first fifteen days of MNP implementation.

Assuming post-paid ARPU is 5x pre-paid, 0.23% subscriber churn can result in no more than 0.5% revenue churn.

TRAI has clarified that certain port-in requests are being rejected due to non-fulfillment of required conditions or errors made by subscribers.

We continue to believe that MNP is unlikely to be a game-changer given largely pre-paid nature of Indian market (>96%) and high blended churn levels (48-120%)

3G rollout can impact MNP dynamics as 1) operator focus is higher on 3G rollout, 2) high-end subscribers could be awaiting rollouts before deciding to port.

On a circle wise basis Haryana circle has seen cumulative porting of 1.2% in more than two months. Number portability was test launched in Haryana effective 25th November 2010. Gujarat and Rajasthan recorded the highest no. of porting requests (~0.4% of customer base) in the northern and western regions. We believe that MNP induced churn is insignificant given the already high churn levels in the Indian market.source

3D movies on a 3G cellphone

Those clever chaps at Fraunhofer have found a way to put 3D on a cellphone by combining the new LTE-Advanced mobile radio standard with a video coding technique.
They've come up with a special compression technique for films in high-resolution HD quality, computing the films down to low data rates while maintaining H.264/AVC quality.
And what the H.246/AVC video format is to HD, they say, the Multiview VideoCoding (MVC) is to 3D.
"MVC is used to pack together the two images needed for the stereoscopic 3D effect to measurably reduce the film’s bit rate," says Thomas Schierl of the Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications. The technique, he says, can be used to reduce the size of 3D films by as much as 40 percent.
And this means that it's possible to receive excellent quality 3D films over a 3G-LTE mobile radio connection.
The key element is the radio resource management integrated into the LTE system, which allows flexible data transmission while including various quality of service classes.
"The 2D and 3D bit streams divided up by MVC can be prioritized for each user at the air interface to support different services, thus opening up a completely new field for business models," says colleague Thomas Wirth.
This could involve premium services, for example, where only the paying user can watch the 3D version of the film. It could also enable a 3D quality guarantee - even in unfavorable reception conditions such as in a moving car.
The team plans to show off the system at MWC next week.source

Alcatel-Lucent 'radio' reduces half of the mobile network energy

There is very little that we can do as a society to stop of the flood of mobile devices vying for wireless connections around the world. But what technology innovators CAN do is look for ways to minimize the environmental impact of the network infrastructure being deployed to support all those mobile phones, personal digital assistant and (now) tablets vying seeking to connect.
Enter Alcatel-Lucent, which has teamed up with Freescale and Hewlett-Packard to create a new, less power-hungry base station infrastructure technology called lightRadio. The architecture — which will be available in trials starting in the second half of 2011 (notably in China) — combines the multiple antennaes that currently support 2G, 3G and LTE systems, compressing them into a single multi-frequency, multi-standard Wideband Array Antennae.
There are a number of very green-techy reasons that lightRadio is pretty interesting:
  1. It uses about half the energy that current radio access network equipment uses. In the press release about the new technology, Alcatel-Lucent cites data estimating that base stations currently emit about 18 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually.
  2. The technology can be installed pretty much anywhere — poles, buildings, anyplace there is power and a broadband connection
  3. Building on point No. 2, there are future innovations planned in terms of microwave backhaul and compression techniques that would make this infrastructure relevant in emerging markets where renewable energies (solar, wind, etc.) could be used as the source of power
This development dovetails with other Alcatel-Lucent and telecommunications initiatives seeking to make mobile networks much more energy-efficient. Here are some related articles:
  • Tech pioneers test energy storage with solar-powered telco base station
  • Verizon Wireless shores up green credentials
  • Sprint CEO: Prioritizing greener wireless services, mobile gadgets
Realistically, it will be a long time before anyone picks their wireless network because it is greener than someone else’s. But as the demands on these networks increase exponentially, so will the electricity consumption — unless technologies like this one are embraced. If for no other reason, the wireless carriers will be scrambling to contain their exposure to electricity costs.
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OnMobile Inks Licensing Agreements In China; Launches Social Karaoke Service

Mobile VAS company OnMobile has launched Karaophone, as service that will allow users to, well, karaoke on social networks through mobile and landline phones. They can choose a song of their choice, create a karaoke version and share it with their connected friends, challenge them and get ranked against fellow players.
The application offers voice based real time updates, supports speech recognition for 30 different languages and has a scoring system based on melody and rhythm; the company feels the service can also be used as a promotional tool for media houses and record labels. Ratnesh Sharma, VP (Marketing) at OnMobile, told MediaNama that the service will initially be integrated with Twitter and Facebook. The company, according to Sharma, is in talks for OEM relationships and is expected to finalise a deal with an operator in the overseas market. In the past, OnMobile competitor Tanla Mobile has launched Karaoke applications – last year, with Reliance Communications, and Telescope Inc, as well as on iTunes.
What readers need to keep in mind is that companies need to take a separate Karaoke license for music. Sharma wasn’t willing to comment on which licensing partners OnMobile has tied up with, and declined to comment on potential impact on content licensing cost for the company, or the revenue share details of the product.
Expansion In China; Licensing Agreements For Dilithium
Meanwhile, OnMobile has also announced expansion plans in China and has opened up a new office in the country. Representatives at the China office will support OnMobile’s handset software R & D team, the sales and technical support team for video products deployed in China, as well as provide support for Chinese OEMs. The office also features a fully functional R&D lab.
OnMobile has also completed an upfront deal that involves royalty stream to the company on handset shipments in the region. The company has licensed its Dilithium Video Calling software stack to several major handset, chipset and platform vendors, including a dominant operator in China. The licensees will be able to embed the company’s video calling software in different handsets, including ones based on Android.source

10 consumer Mobile Apps for 2012

Analyst firm Gartner has identified what it believes will be the most important mobile applications in 2012. Focusing on high-end devices with an average selling price (ASP) of more than $300 dollars, analysts have identified the top 10 cutting-edge technologies and trends for 2012.

Winning mobile apps will have unique features that cater to the mobile environment rather than act as a mobile extension of their online peers.

“Mobile applications will be a highly competitive marketplace that attracts the interest of many stakeholders," said Sandy Shen, research director at Gartner.

“Increasingly, mobile applications will define the user experience on high-end devices and device vendors that proactively integrate innovative apps and technologies at the platform layer will have the competitive edge."

Mobile apps themselves will not only generate good revenue ($15.9 billion in expected end-user spending in 2012) but will also drive hardware sales, advertising spending and technology innovation.

Gartner said it expects brand companies to increasingly shift their marketing budget to the mobile channel, and experiment with cutting-edge apps to capture marketing and sales opportunities.

Companies, as well as technology and service providers, that stay abreast of the latest developments could make their products stand out from the pack, enhance brand image and retain user loyalty, said Gartner.

Gartner’s top 10 consumer applications to watch in 2012 are:

  • Location-based services (LBSs). Location is one of the main enablers that deliver services to users based on their context and, Gartner expects the total user base of consumer LBSs to reach 1.4 billion users by 2014. LBS strive to deliver features and functionalities in tune with the user’s context, taking into account the user’s location, personal preference, gender, age, profession, intention and so on, thus offering a more-intelligent user experience than basic location services can. Gartner analysts believe context-aware services are a key trend for mobile apps, and location is a key enabler of that.
  • Social networking. Mobile social networking is the fastest-growing consumer mobile app category of the 19 tracked by Gartner. Social network platforms are sucking in increasing amounts of network traffic. They are becoming portals, transit hubs and cloud storage for increasing amounts of messaging and e-mail traffic, videos, photos, games and commerce. As mainstream adoption progresses, global social sites will be driven toward providing services in partnership with third parties using open APIs, and are likely to evolve to a role as infrastructure providers acting as data warehouses and providing user data and access to the more-consumer-facing brands.
  • Mobile search. Visual search is usually related with product search to enable price comparisons or to check product information. To bring mobile search to the next level, the app would allow users to take actions based on the result, such as making a call or reservation, buying a ticket, placing an order, and so on. Gartner advises search providers to build the experience around mobile to allow users access to immediate results and to take actions, given the short time span users have. Mobile device vendors should partner with or acquire promising search providers to integrate the technology, preferably at the platform layer, to offer a differentiated user experience.
  • Mobile commerce. Today, mobile commerce is more of an extension of e-commerce but in a smaller form factor and with a more-streamlined experience. However, over the next 24 months, Gartner expects the emergence of uniquely mobile functions, such as the ability to “check in" to a store to alert a retailer that you are there, or the ability to add items to a shopping cart simply by taking a photo of an item or bar code in the physical store. In the future, Gartner expects richer mobile commerce capabilities to expand from native apps to the mobile browser as HTML5 starts to be deployed, though this will happen at a much later stage.
  • Mobile payment. Although near field communication (NFC) payment will be included in high-end phones from 2011, Gartner does not believe that it will become mainstream before 2015. In order to get consumers on board, payment solution providers need to address ease-of-use for users and ease-of-implementation for customers without compromising security. They also need to increase user awareness, extend the service coverage and address ease-of-use to appeal to end users.
  • Context-aware service. Context-aware applications provide improved user experiences by using the information about a person’s interests, intentions, history, environment, activities, schedule, priorities, connections and preferences to anticipate their needs and proactively serve up the most appropriate content, product or service. Mobile carriers, along with handset manufacturers, should provide expanded location services to include, among others, directory assistance, mapping, advertising and privacy controls.
  • Object recognition (OR). High-end devices have an increased sensor and processing capability that enable sophisticated applications to recognize the user’s surroundings, including specific objects of interest. Because OR provides an easy-to-use interface, more apps will come to the market with enhanced capabilities by 2012. Users will rely on the camera, as well as other device sensors as a communication tool when OR capabilities are combined with more-traditional app functions, giving users advanced search capabilities and a plethora of entertainment and productivity functionality.
  • Mobileinstant messaging (MIM). Gartner expects MIM to attract consumers to new types of unified communication (UC) client, provided by over the top (OTT) service providers such as Skype. These service providers are threatening traditional communications service provider voice revenue. Companies that consider including MIM into new products should consider integrating it with other communications types, such as location and presence, but be cautious about developing other functionality, such as federation of social network activity.
  • Mobile e-mail. Smartphones have begun to drive the mainstream adoption of mobile e-mail through a series of technology enhancements enabling low-cost mobile extensions to existing e-mail service. Gartner expects mobile e-mail users worldwide to increase from 354 million in 2009 to 713 million in 2014, to account for 10.6 percent of the global mobile user base. E-mail addresses are personal and potentially extremely sticky, thus provide carriers, e-mail service providers and OTT players with an opportunity to lock in consumers. Technology and service providers should consider how they can make it easier for consumers to use their affiliated mobile e-mail services as a way of ensuring long-term engagement with customers.

    Technology and service providers should consider how they can make it easier for consumers to use their affiliated mobile e-mail services as a way of ensuring long-term engagement with customers.
  • Mobile video. Mobile phones with larger screens and media tablets offer the ideal platform for video consumption and with careful marketing and consumer education, Gartner believes that carriers and content providers would be able to drive mobile video usage in the coming years. Mobile carriers should partner with YouTube and other popular video providers, so that users can replicate their Internet behavior on their mobile phones, while mobile device manufacturers should integrate HD and 3D capabilities in their high-end devices and look to bundle content either as pre-loaded or as free downloads through an app store. source