Let me begin by saying that I find Jibo (a little household robot/servant) to be cute, creepy, and provocative.
We’ve been fantasizing about robots for decades, and the connected internet of things joined to intelligent software make these little digital companions a future certainty. This type of device/platform isn’t a fanstasy. It’s inevitable.
The privacy issues make me cringe; though, in reality, this is only an evolutionary step from our existing world of smartphones and other connected devices.
So, what does this Wall*E-like platform do? Watch this video, and then let’s discuss one application that could be pretty significant – patient compliance with taking medications:
Now, imagine an older person – perhaps living alone – that needs to take one or more meds in sequence during the day. If Jibo is there, with a prescription schedule(s) programmed in, then it’s much easier to deliver friendly reminders.
Create digital bridges to wearables (such as Apple’s iWatch and other body-monitoring devices), and some really interesting possibilities open up. Tie this into glucose monitoring devices for diabetes, for instance, or into an on-board blood pressure monitoring device. Pharmacies could interface Jibo to one of those fancy digital pill-bottle caps that can send a signal when it’s time for another pill.
Now you have a (multi-functional and kinda friendly) companion that can talk to you and provide reminders.
Of course, there is the expanded possiblility of video medical consultation, since a device of this sort could both store and upload digitally-gathered body systems data. Jibo becomes the in-house medical information conduit.
The fact is, all of this is coming – we have the various tools and toys already in place for it. Something like a servant-robot could easily tie it all together from an interface point of view.
What do you think? Is Jibo potentially one of the new faces of medicine?