For almost the past five years, teams from all over the globe have been competing to bring one of science fiction’s most iconic gadgets a little closer to reality. The Qualcomm Tricorder X PRIZE reached its culmination on Wednesday evening at an awards ceremony that recognized the winners.
Named after the famous fictional piece of Star Trek technology that combined advanced sensing, imaging, and computing technologies, the Qualcomm Tricorder X PRIZE seeks a device that will allow a user to assess health conditions anywhere, determine if they need further professional help, and overall answer the question, “What do I do next?”
In first place was the appropriately named Final Frontier Medical Devices from the United States with their design, the DxtER. DxtER (pronounced Dexter) features a group of non-invasive sensors that are designed to collect data about vital signs, body chemistry, and biological functions. It also uses an artificial intelligence-based engine that learns to diagnose medical conditions by integrating knowledge from clinical emergency medicine with data analysis from actual patients.
The runner-up was Dynamic Biomarkers Group from Taiwan. Their design was a system consisting of three modules: a smart vitals monitor, a smart blood-urine test kit, and a smart scope. The devices are paired with diagnostic algorithms in a user-friendly device that is controlled through a smartphone.
While the competition portion of the Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE may be over, the prototypes will continue to undergo development with support from the FDA and other regulatory bodies. In addition to eventually becoming available for retail distribution, the devices will be utilized in a hospital in Mozambique, Africa, and other developing countries. Finally, these devices will be part of a documentary and museum exhibit that will discuss the potential impact of this type of technology in healthcare.
Stay tuned as we’ll be interviewing both winning teams in the coming weeks.
Congratulations to Dr. Basil Harris and George Harris of Final Frontier Medical Devices as well as Dr. Chung-Kang Peng and the Dynamic Biomarkers Group!