Aging in place trailblazer focus – SensorsCall

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SensorsCall – monitoring environment and interaction for safer, independent living – and peace of mind for relatives.

Over the coming weeks, we will be bringing you extracts from 7 trailblazer profiles from our Aging in place Report. Each profile includes a flagship product deep dive as well as interoperability, target market, channels to market, success factors, IP and funding.

We also take a forensic overview with success grid and TRL assessment. Here’s the lowdown on SensorsCall.

To read the full version of SensorsCall’s profile (and much more besides!) please click here.

SensorsCall - Aging in place trailblazer
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SensorsCall is a company on a mission to enable loved ones to live independently for longer whilst aging in their own homes. The company prioritises privacy and dignity when producing a product for seniors. Just over three years ago, SensorsCall started developing their device, ‘CareAlert’ as a response to the founders experiencing the eye-opening difficulties of caring for their parents after reaching a stage of increased care dependency. At this time, founder, and CEO, Fereydoun Taslimi noticed the anxiety his wife Lili was facing looking after her mother, who was 83 years old at the time and still living independently at home. Together they felt they needed some way of knowing how Lili’s mother was doing each day: was she was able to get up OK in the morning, had she taken a shower without any incidents, and if she returned from her shopping trip, etc. After researching the market space, they could not find any devices that could provide all this information in one product, and so SensorsCall was formed with the intention of developing and bringing this product to market.

During their time researching the market space, the team ran into others who all had the same issues with their aging parents. Some lived far away from their parents’ homes with no visibility into their well-being and felt a growing nervousness as their parents grew older, worrying that something may happen without them knowing, stopping them from giving their parents the help they may need. The SensorsCall team discovered, whilst looking into senior demographics, that the market space is a fast-growing segment globally, with the aging in place space offering an impactful solution to the care crisis countries are already facing globally.

While trialling ideas to help produce a monitoring system for seniors, SensorsCall quickly discovered that cameras, and other video or audio recording technology, were widely met with resistance in the homes of seniors as it feels like a great invasion of privacy. It was soon decided that the product should not be focused on simply monitoring a person but monitoring their environment and how they interact with and affect it. SensorsCall developed the first CareAlert prototype, a device that would ensure the safety and security of Lili’s mother without compromising her privacy. The prototype was a self-contained, battery-operated device that would be placed throughout the home to monitor a variety of environmental conditions. These devices would include multiple sensors pre-set to certain thresholds and would sound an alert if those thresholds were met or exceeded. As the product developed the team decided to base the design of the device around a night light. This made it compact in size and allowed it to have a removable power adaptor, allowing it to be placed in a variety of spaces and still be connected to power via a USB cable.

The company has uniquely been developing all the product expertise in-house, including: circuit design, embedded software, cloud, data science and machine learning, meaning the team have not had to depend on any contractors or consultants. The team’s experience and commitment to attending aging technology events and conferences, continually furthering their understanding about the market and new technologies, is just one reason why SensorsCall has been showing such great promise in the aging in place space.

SensorsCall’s future performance goals not only include increasing product sales and installations but also raising greater awareness of its product and how it serves the community of seniors who want to age in place, as well as their relatives and formal carers who want them to be able to do this as safely as possible. Due to this shared goal in making aging in place accessible, SensorsCall is very open to forming partnerships within the market space and has already identified several partnerships opportunities that can develop as the company grows.

What began as a method drawn up to ensure Lili’s mother was home safe has now blossomed into a multi-year project aimed at creating an intelligent, interactive monitoring system that ensures privacy and provides peace of mind. SensorsCall’s goal is to provide that same level of comfort and peace of mind to users and their loved ones using CareAlert.

Aging in place trailblazer

Longevity Potential: CareAlert – the simple nightlight keeping you connected.

CareAlert is a device that lets you be there for your loved ones without having to get in contact with them over the phone or visit in person. The device is a ‘Smart night-light’ that learns a loved one’s daily routines to alert you, through the CareAlert app, when an unusual behaviour or activity has taken place. SensorsCall have developed this award-winning technology for senior in-home care based on market research into what real formal and informal carers are looking for in an alert device. In general, caregivers are looking for a device that:

  • Lets the caregiver know the individual in question is fine
  • Will notify them is anything is out of the ordinary
  • Will connect them instantly with the individual

CareAlert was created to solve these three main concerns. The device contains multiple environmental sensors which are connected to the cloud where an AI-driven analytics engine develops an awareness of the habits and activities of inhabitants. Any unusual patterns are detected and verified by the devices multiple sensors and are reported to the caregivers. In addition, the device allows communication directly with the occupants in case of an emergency. It is also customisable to allow alerts based on individuals’ medical history, as potential hazards may vary with different conditions seniors are experiencing.

The sensors pick up motion in each room and, using SensorsCall’s AI technology, can learn a senior’s daily routine, alerting carers via app notifications when something deviates from that routine. As CareAlert does not use any camera elements, and does not constantly record audio in the home, individual privacy is not impeached, letting monitoring take place non-intrusively. As CareAlert is designed to get smarter over time, offering more features the more it is used, it requires one week after installation to sense and learn the normal routine and environmental conditions in the home. This data is then sent to the CareAlert cloud for analysis and allows the device to establish baseline behaviours and conditions to be used by the AI system to detect any abnormalities. All this is done whilst maintaining the senior’s privacy and dignity, without the use of a camera or listening to their conversations.

Interestingly, SensorsCall have put emphasis on developing a monitoring system that not only monitors the individual but also the environment. CareAlert can detect humidity, air quality changes and even unsafe room temperatures. If something is out of the ordinary CareAlert will pick this up and alert the carer immediately using its two-way communicator, allowing the carer to check in with ease.

SensorsCall has already been receiving positive feedback from CareAlert users who are benefitting from being able to have insight into their parents’ lives without intruding on their privacy. It has connected parents and their children, when normally older parents have been harder to contact as they tend to have greater difficulty using, or even remembering to use their mobile phones. SensorsCall’s success in creating a device and app that is easy to adopt into seniors and carers’ lives, yet incorporates smart technology that can monitor several variables in the home, is a step forward in the aging in place market, widening accessibility to more seniors looking to grow old in their own homes.

Click here to access the “Aging in place” report absolutely FREE.

Eleanor Garth
Deputy Editor Now a science and medicine journalist, Eleanor worked as a consultant for university spin-out companies and provided research support at Imperial College London and various London hospitals in a former life.

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