Ford is developing health care technology for cars
Ford is collaborating with other companies and medical professionals to research and develop apps to help you manage your health while in a car, particularly if you're a person with diabetes, asthma or allergies.
"What we're really concerned with is the well-being of the driver, not just his ability to drive," Gary Strumolo, a Ford health and safety researcher, told SmartPlanet.
Ford envisions a car that would capitalize on its existing SYNC connectivity platform to offer three ways the new technology would work. One is through built-in features like sensors. Another is via passengers' portable handheld devices. The other is external health information that gets transmitted into the car.
The system would allow you, a driver or passenger, to input data, by voice and hands-free, which would be uploaded to servers that access patient information. Then, in real-time you'd receive information and/or advice, ABC's KABC-TV Los Angeles explained, like a notification you're driving through an area with substandard air quality or your blood sugar is low and here's what to do.
Another example Ford Social offered is you might record the pills you'd taken or how many glasses of water you'd consumed, and you'd receive reports for later review.
Ford's foray into health and wellness technology is consistent with research and societal trends, Strumolo said. Since 2011, medical and health care smartphone apps have been the third fastest-growing category. Their use is expected to rise.
Strumolo added, Ford aims to create "the car that cares."
"Car health apps to help drivers with diabetes, allergies," ABCLocal.Go.com, October 24, 2012, Leslie Sykes
"Ford cars on the highway to health," SmartPlanet.com, February 28, 2012, John Rennie
"How a Car Might Help You Manage Your Health," Social.Ford.com, January 11, 2012, Cole Quinnell