Nokia unveils a bunch of digital health gadgets

The first major set of announcements since the Withings acquisition sees Nokia make its move with a portfolio of devices designed to help people keep an eye on their health.

Nokia famously got out of the devices game a few years ago when it flogged its handset division to Microsoft, which promptly killed the rest of it off. But a year or so ago the company made a surprising strategic move with the acquisition of consumer IoT company Withings, having apparently decided that was where the devices action was going to be in future.

Now Nokia has fully integrated Withings and this set of launches offers the first fruits of that unlikely coupling. The headline devices include Nokia Body – a smart, connected set of scales – and Nokia BPM+ – a blood pressure monitor. There is also, inevitably, and app to allow all this data to be processed and, presumably, so be shared on social media to show how healthy you are.

“Nokia’s global expansion into digital health builds on Nokia’s unmatched track record of quality, reliability and trust, which are characteristics that are all critical to success in the health industry,” said Brad Rodrigues, interim president at Nokia Technologies.

“Nokia’s line of digital health products delivers actionable insights, giving users the equivalent of a daily check-up,” said Cedric Hutchings, VP of Digital Health at Nokia. “Today’s launch extends the accessibility of our products to a broader range of users and needs, giving families the personalized experience they need to live healthier lives together.”

“To face the global health crisis of chronic diseases related to lifestyle and behaviour, we need powerful and engaging tools and solutions,” said Nokia Chief Medical Officer, Matthew Diamond, MD, PhD. “Nokia is committed to shifting the focus from treatment to prevention, empowering consumers to take control of their health.”

These Nokia-branded products will be sold through consumer retail channels and may inspire more brand loyalty than the handset rebadging programme we were forced to endure around this year’s MWC. With aging populations and over-stretched public sectors in many countries, digital health is likely to become a big deal as we look for more efficient ways to manage chronic health issues.

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