The market for health monitoring devices and apps is absolutely exploding with new developments, pointing the way towards a very near future when real life Star Trek tricorder-style gadgets may begin to become real. Following this trend, Japan's Fujitsu has announced plans to incorporate a vital aspect of health tracking technology into its upcoming mobile phone hardware.
Through developments on several fronts last year, real-time pulse monitoring, using just a camera on one's smartphone or tablet to detect changes in facial blood flow, became the latest health-tracking tech to move from cutting-edge to mainstream. But while there are a few device makers that have embraced the technology, Fujitsu is one of the only major hardware makers to commit to fully integrating the technology into its large ecosystem of smartphones, tablets, and PC hardware. Practical applications for the technology range from using it at security check points to identify individuals exhibiting abnormal stress levels, to mobile emergency medical crews using it to make rapid diagnosis in the field.
Although the company's statement infers that it developed the technology, it's unclear whether or not Fujitsu's technology differs significantly from previously established facial pulse monitoring software. Fujitsu says it plans to roll out the pulse monitoring technology in its hardware line-up later this year.