The company announced the launch of its Simband open wearable hardware platform and SAMI open software platform, inviting developers to come up with new ways to help consumers monitor their own bodies. Samsung has also teamed up with the University of California, San Francisco, to form the UCSF-Samsung Digital Health Innovation Lab, where "researchers and technologists will be able to develop and run trials to validate exciting new mobile health technologies," according to a press release.
"Our bodies have always had something to say but now, with advanced sensors, algorithms and software, we will finally be able to tune into what the body is telling us," UCSF informatics associated vice chancellor Dr. Michael Blum said on behalf of the company. "Validation of these technologies will improve the quality of data collected and help advance the ability to bring new products to market quickly."
Samsung clinched the initiative with a $50 million investment fund dedicated to startups and technologies that contribute to digital health and utilize Samsung’s open platforms. That’s in addition to the $100 million Samsung Catalyst fund, dedicated to "disruptive" ideas more generally.
The Simband architecture is a concept for a wrist-based sensor with continuous monitoring capabilities of things such as heart rate and skin conductivity. The SAMI software is a "data broker" to transmit information to the cloud where it can be connected to calendars, GPS and other contexts.
"Basic rule engines, machine learning and algorithms in SAMI help process the data and perform analysis," according to Samsung’s Strategy & Innovation Center website. "And once in SAMI, the data is available to partners who want to create approved apps and services."