A picture is worth 1,000 words, as the saying goes, and now a startup called Nuralogix is taking this idea to the next level: soon, a selfies will be able to give you 1,000 diagnostics about the state of your health
Anura uses the data from a 30-second selfies to create a catalogue of readings about you. They include vital statistics like heart rate and blood pressure; mental health-related diagnostics like stress and depression levels; details about your physical state like body mass index and skin age; and your level of risk for diseases like hypertension, stroke and heart disease.
Some of the readings are better than others. To coincide with the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas, Nuralogix announced that its blood pressure measurement was getting more accurate, with a standard deviation of less than 8mmHg.
Anura is part of a larger trend. The Covid-19 Pandemic gave the world a chance to use and develop more remote health services, which many had thought of as experimental or sub optimal.
There are a number of apps and devices in the market due to the fact that regular monitoring can be key to preventing health problems. Anura is an example of how companies are using low friction to get big results. That has been the holy grail of modern medicine, and it was the reason why so many wanted Theranos to be real.
Observers believe there is a big future for tele-health and companies like Nuralogix providing the means to implement it, despite the fact that some pandemic-era behaviors are not sticking as firmly as people thought they would.
The global tele-health market was $83.5 billion in 2022, and will grow to $101.2 billion in 2023, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25% to 2030, according to a new report.
The startup is based out of Toronto, Canada, and is backed by the city's Mars Innovation effort, a group of universities and research groups helping to spin out academic research. It is talking to automotive companies that see the potential of being able to use this to track when a driver is tired or has a health crisis.
The results that Anura comes up with are seen as guidance for investigations. The company is currently going through the FDA approval process so that it can use the results in a more proactive manner.
There is a lite version of the application where people can get some of the diagnostics, but not all of them.
It's worth looking at how the lite version gathers data, not just as a way to promote the company, but also as a way to gather data.
Anura was built on the back of an artificial intelligence that was trained on tens of thousands of users. Blood can be seen in a video image of a user's face. The company says that human skin is transparent. Blood flow information in the human face can be revealed with the help of light and its wavelength.
The app was being tested at the show.
That is matched up with different diagnostics from those people using traditional measuring tools. Blood moving in one direction or another, or a person's skin color, can be seen by the Anura app as an indication of how the person is doing.
It's possible that DeepAffex is being used for more than just tele-healthdiagnostics. Before it pivoted to health, the company used its technology to read users' emotions. Traditional lie detector tests are frequently used by police and others to determine if a person is telling the truth, but have been proven to be flawed.
Hardware has horizons that extend into it. The current version of Anura is based on an app that you can use on your phone or tablets, but the company may add in other types of facial scanning and other tools in the future, as well as producing more diagnostics. Blood oxygen is one area that the company definitely wants to tackle.
I tried out the full version of the Anura app in Las Vegas this week and it was a pretty compelling experience and I think it will appeal to a lot of people. There was a permanent queue of people waiting to try it out.