Dutch health technology company e-Senses is currently trying to raise funds on Indiegogo for its new gadget the Helios Smart Ring. Billed as the world’s first sunlight, daylight and vitamin D tracker, users will wear it like any other ring and its UV index and ambient light sensors calculate all the sun they have been absorbing and hence, vitamin D, which we naturally get from the sun. Well, largely.
Over a billion people worldwide are currently vitamin D deficient, due to a variety of reasons. People spending too much time indoors, or putting on too much sunscreen, or simply living in grim sunless climates. Obesity and darker skin tone can also dramatically reduce the body’s ability to absorb vitamin D. Regardless of reason, the result is always the same – serious health damage. It can lead to a plethora of problems and illnesses from day to day issues such as fatigue and lack of concentration, but bigger long term complications can include rickets, depression and even cancer.
With so many factors involved, a device like this could make life easier (and safer), and the smartphone (iOS and Android) app will keep the data nice and accessible. It’ll also tell users if they’re getting too much sun, but that’s often easy to work out without tech – agonising sunburn is hard to ignore. A pledge of EUR 119 will get you a ring (in black or white), which will eventually retail for EUR 149.
We’re seeing an increasing number of portable devices that let consumers take charge of their vitamin and mineral intake, such as an acupuncture pen and when customers are deficient they’ll soon be able to 3D print their own supplements. What other areas of health could be efficiently tracked using such a tiny device?