‘I’m interested in things that change the world or that affect the future and wondrous, new technology where you see it, and you’re like, ‘Wow, how did that even happen? How is that possible?” – Elon Musk, SpaceX

Tech for Good – in other words, technology with the power to save lives – is making a real impact so far in 2018. Recent tech events, including Cambridge Wireless Unplugged, have focused on transformative innovations that make everyday life better and easier, and the team at Arkessa have been on the ground in search of the most exciting and revolutionary life-changing tech on the horizon. Read on to discover life-saving Femtech, life-improving Digital Health and a Smart Home that knows you better than you know yourself.

At home health monitoring

Two incredible women – one of whom has survived cervical cancer – have joined forces to create Syrona, an at-home digital test kit for STDs, endometriosis (which can take up to seven years to diagnose) and cervical cancers. The connected health device is of the same size and appearance as a pregnancy test and uses a simple diagnostic tool which reacts when in contact with a ‘naturally occurring and non-invasive’ sample. If you get a ‘Yes’ result, the device itself can refer you to a doctor. The longer cervical cancer is left untreated, the harder it is to cure. Giving women the flexibility to test themselves at home can be the difference between life or death. It could also ease the strain on health services, and reduce initial consultations and prolonged treatment of severe cases.

Other connected health devices such as Actiste by Sweden-based tech company Brighter are pioneering technology to facilitate self-care and self-monitoring for people living with conditions like diabetes. Actiste enables patients to gather data about their condition and choose to share it with their caregivers to help with their ongoing treatment plan or in an emergency. With over 400 million diabetes sufferers worldwide – a number that is rising all the time – these connected healthcare devices could improve the lives of innumerable people across the globe. Find out more about Actiste here.

Affordable super-bionic prostheses

The cost of a prosthesis per patient is 2000€ – a significant figure. ‘The next generation of bionics’ – Open Bionics is formulating a way to use 3D printing to reduce this cost by 30%.

After scanning a limb, the design is planned out with the help of the patient for ultimate personalisation. It takes 40 hours to print the new prosthesis. And because 3D printing can build complex moving parts, it’s capable of creating light-weight and multi-grip bionic limbs that give a person greater control for more freedom and independence.

The technology could also transform children’s lives. Taking inspiration from Disney and Marvel superheroes, fictional designs encourage children to feel proud of their prostheses.

A disaster-minimising Smart Home System

Integrate Kirio into your home, and you’ll be convinced there’s a human living in your walls. This tech claims to be so smart, it can even learn and anticipate your living habits. This may sound a little creepy, but Kirio can also save your life. The agnostic system currently in development can connect with other Smart Home devices – such as room sensors and smart locks – to control everything within the house.

By picking up readings from a smart sensor, it can reduce the effects of a disaster, like an earthquake. Once it detects a tremor, Kirio can shut off gas, water and electricity to prevent fires, leaks and explosions.

You don’t have to be a geek to use this system. In fact, it can operate without any input at all, optimising ease of use for people who might otherwise struggle to live independently.

And finally…ever heard of battery anxiety? It’s a real condition affecting consumers – especially those who are reliant on the kinds of technology described above. Aircharge provide wireless charging facilities within retail spaces, along with an app that points consumers to the nearest charging station. This in turn drives footfall to retail environments and offers a superior business experience in office and hospitality venues.

Lifestyle tech is here to stay

Sometimes when we’re busy focusing on the bigger picture, it’s easy to forget that technology can make a real positive impact on individual people’s lives. Check out the #techforgood hashtag for more inspirational tech that is making a difference.

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