At CES this week Independa announced plans to bring its health and social engagement platform, Angela, to senior communities through a pilot with LG Electronics’ US-based R&D subsidiary, Zenith.
The company also demonstrated a version of Angela that runs on iPhones and iPads — up until now the software has been available from Independa on 10-inch and 22-inch tablets running Microsoft Windows 7. While the move to iOS devices is not surprising, Independa has long been an example of a company that has bucked the iPad trend.
The strategic partnership with Zenith will bring Angela to LG’s Pro:Centric-enabled line of commercial TV sets. Independa launched Angela last summer as an integrated tablet and software offering for the independent elderly. The software, which sports large fonts and higher contrast, offers video chat, email, Facebook, puzzles, appointment reminders, and more.
As part of the deal, the companies will work together to conduct customer trials of Angela running on LG TVs. While there is no set date for a commercial rollout, the companies expect to bring the services to longterm care facilities once the trials are complete.
This isn’t the first collaboration between a TV manufacturer and a health or wellness company.
BodyMedia integrated its BodyMedia Fit armband into Panasonic televisions last summer. In that instance, a picture-in-picture setup onscreen presents fitness data while BodyMedia users work out in front of the TV. Skimble, which Rock Health incubated in its first class of startups, also brings workout apps to the TV through Apple TV.
In 2009, Continua Health Alliance’s Executive Director Chuck Parker revealed that Continua was considering the television set-top box as one potential hub for wireless health devices, and Bluetooth SIG executive director Mike Foley told MobiHealthNews that he had noticed an uptick in interest from television makers looking at ways to embed Bluetooth Smart into new TV models, which would allow for medical devices using that protocol to connect to TV sets. In 2010, the launch of Google TV led to more speculation about the TV as a home health hub.
Read the press release below.