Modoo helps moms to be with dos and don’ts of pregnancy

A wearable pregnancy monitor that would allow mothers-to-be to monitor and record fetal heart rate and movement at any time sounds like a no-brainer.

Modoo does exactly that, and also sets fitness tasks and provides diet advice that its maker says will allow expectant moms and their babies to be healthier. The small, circular wearable device is light and, according to its Indiegogo campaign video, easily sticks to the user’s stomach area. It works in conjunction with an Android and iOS app. Modoo’s maker set a goal to raise $50,000 by Nov. 7. The device is expected to ship in April at $199, but Indiegogo backers can get one early for $129.

There’s a huge potential audience for Modoo. But it remains to be seen how accurate the information it provides will be. It’s also hard to tell from the campaign video how comfortable it will be to wear Modoo all day.

Connected Objects Health and Wellness Wearables

SmartCardio keeps you a heartbeat away from your loved ones

A growing number of health monitoring devices that send information to mobile devices are being introduced on crowdfunding sites.

SmartCardio features a wide range of bells and whistles, and follows similar devices that include MOCAheart. SmartCardio lets users monitor their cardiovascular systems, as well as those of their loved ones. It also allows users to view electrocardiogram (ECG) analysis in real time and enables around-the-clock surveillance by cardiologists. One battery charge is sufficient to operate the device for up to seven days, its maker says. An accompanying app will be available for Android, iOS and Windows Phone devices.


After devouring folding keyboards, FlyShark takes on the smartwatch

A common knock against most smartwatches is that their most significant functions, such as making phone calls, can only be used when a paired smartphone is nearby.

Following their successful campaign for a sleek folding keyboard accessory for smartphones, the makers of the FlyShark Smartwatch have set out to remove this codependence from smartwatches. Specifically, the FlyShark Smartwatch can make private calls and send and receive messages all without requiring users to touch their smartphones. Generally, the FlyShark Smartwatch can function independently so long as there is a Micro SIM card installed.

Like other smartwatches, it also functions as an exercise tracker and heart rate monitor. Unlike the soon to be released Apple Watch, FlyCatch also features a built-in camera. Other features include dual Bluetooth 3.0 and 4.0 support. The campaign, which seeks $10,000, will remain open until April 1, 2014.

FlyShark has some nice features, but the jury’s out on just how much appeal there is for a smartwatch whose main selling point is its independence from the smartphone. Many consumers on the market for a smartwatch, after all, likely already own a smartphone. It’s therefore a little hard to see how FlyShark can compete against popular brands like Samsung, LG, and Apple.


Watches and Jewelry Wearables

Ear-O-Smart measures activity levels in an earring

Most wearables devices come as wristbands that can be pretty bulky. Companies are just now getting around to the fact that most people don’t want to wear these ungainly devices despite whatever benefits they may offer, and designs are starting to reflect that. In all of this, though, the market for women-worn wearables is practically non-existent.

BioSensive Technologies Inc. has noticed, and has designed the Ear-O-Smart, a connected earring aimed specifically at women. The earring is Bluetooth LE enabled and syncs with any iOS/Android phone to provide an activity tracker, heart rate monitor, and a calorie monitor to better inform users of their body states. The campaign is looking for $30,000 CAD (~$26,300 USD) to get the $149 CAD (~$130 USD) earrings out by June 2015.

This company has truly taken a chance in designing an accessory for women as the challenge, first and foremost, is a design one and not a technological one. In addition, that market is extremely saturated and most women enjoy a large selection of accessories at any one time, so asking for the repeated use of just one will be a long shot. The Ear-O-Smart attempts to address these points by being customizable, but even a few different looks may not be enough.

Health and Wellness Safety

LifeKeeper learns how to protect your heart from episodes

lifekeeperCardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the world with over 13 million cases each year. People know how to engage in heart-smart diets and behaviors, but sometimes that isn’t enough to protect oneself from a cardiac episode. The LifeKeeper is more than just a heart rate monitor, sending vitals to a user’s smartphone and assessing the data to determine if there are any health risks at that present time. LifeKeeper collects data through questions, activity tracking, sleep analysis, and creates a profile which can be viewed or that will trigger an alert in a potentially health-hazardous scenario. A LifeKeeper can be had with a pledge of $199, complete with sensors and the app, arriving in December 2014.