Are Smartphones the Future of healthcare?

Are Smartphones the Future of healthcare?


Mar 30, 2023

Blog Healthcare Are Smartphones the Future of healthcare?

Most people would agree that smartphones changed everything. These small gadgets hold, quite literally, a world of information. They bring us immediate access to almost every book, person, and resource imaginable, and this luxury now extends to healthcare.

Indeed, smartphone technology is increasingly upending the way we treat medical patients, with more consumers accepting treatment through mobile health medical devices. Smartwatches and activity trackers are being fused with medical-grade capabilities, triggering the birth of smartphone-based patient monitoring. BCC Research predicts this trend will continue to gain velocity, estimating the market to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25.9% from 2022 to 2027, reaching heights of $21.5 billion.

With considerable growth on the horizon, let's dive into how smartphones are shaking up the healthcare industry.

Unhealthy lifestyles push innovations in healthcare

Lifestyle factors like smoking, drinking too much, not eating well, not getting enough exercise, and not managing stress are key contributors to chronic diseases. Over half of Americans have more than one chronic condition like heart disease, diabetes, or arthritis, and most of it is due to poor lifestyle choices.

Diabetes is a major problem worldwide, and one of the top ten causes of death globally. Indeed, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, and respiratory disease account for over 80% of all deaths globally. It's estimated that over 570 million people had diabetes in 2019, and that number is expected to climb to almost 660 million by 2045. In the US, nearly 30 million people are living with diabetes, and another 86 million have prediabetes.

The rise in chronic diseases means that more and more people are seeking medical care, especially in places like Asia-Pacific and the Middle East and Africa, where the rates of chronic illness are soaring. In response to the rising demand for healthcare, innovative solutions are required. Smartphone-based technology has emerged as a cost-effective way to help patients gain autonomy over their chronic conditions.

Smartphone-based technology is also contributing to increased proactive patient engagement with chronic disease management plans. Patients are gifted the ability to manage their own condition, helping them feel in control of their own health. This is driving the market for smartphone-based patient monitoring to a significant extent, with many seeing the value in receiving healthcare from the comfort of their homes.

Smartphone-Based Patient Monitoring: Global Market

In the technological age, healthcare is undoubtedly becoming increasingly digitalized, with smartphone technology emerging as a key facet of this. With the market set to boom, it makes sense for us to embrace the rise of smartphone-based healthcare. 

The technologies changing the face of mobile healthcare

A string of advancements in mobile technology is a key catalyst of the industry’s expansion. The disruptive growth in fields like the IoT, flexible electronics, smart materials, and low-power computing and networking are making technology far more accessible, easily integrable, and lower in price. The miniaturization of sensors, along with ubiquitous computing, a trend of embedding computational capability into everyday objects, has garnered widespread interest in using smartphone-based technology in healthcare.

Thanks to tactile biosensors, we can now collect mechanical data from the human body and local environment to provide information about our bodies. These devices have dramatically enhanced their adoption among consumers due to material developments leading to a high level of wearability and stretchability. Plus, with technological advancements like 4G and 5G wireless connectivity, the need for cost-efficient healthcare delivery, and increased awareness about personal healthcare management, the demand for smartphone technology and remote monitoring in the healthcare market is constantly increasing.

The best part is, we can now integrate our smartphones with healthcare devices. This allows users to monitor health and activity levels in a personalized, effective, and instant way. For example, the cloud-based DreaMed Advisor Pro is a diabetes treatment support app that analyzes data from CGMs and insulin pumps to deliver dosage recommendations directly to the monitoring physician.

The miniaturization of sensors is also a game-changer. Sensor manufacturers are now providing flexible mounting options, smaller sizes, and the ability to integrate multiple sensor functions into a single package, boosting adoption in applications where they were never used before. We now have body fluid sensors and volatile bio-marker analyzers, as well as contactless technologies such as breath and perspiration, all thanks to the miniaturization of sensors. Plus, firms like PragmatIC printing are developing ultra-thin, low-cost flexible microcircuits that can be incorporated in mass-market packaging and hybrid electronics, benefiting wireless medical devices for rapid diagnostics using printed sensors.

Startups are also jumping on the bandwagon, offering technologically innovative products and continuously developing and advancing them to gain a competitive edge over competitors. With all these advancements, we can look forward to a future where healthcare is personalized, accurate, and easy to use.

The future of healthcare

In the technological age, healthcare is undoubtedly becoming increasingly digitalized, with smartphone technology emerging as a key facet of this. With the market set to boom, it makes sense for us to embrace the rise of smartphone-based healthcare. With this in mind, BCC Research’s latest report provides an invaluable companion for those hoping to navigate this unfolding landscape. With regional market data and a detailed evaluation of the market’s drivers and blockers, players can become equipped with the knowledge for smarter business decisions.

We recently published a report on the megatrends set to grip healthcare, digitalization and sustainability. Grab your copy here!

We also publish a high volume of reports in the healthcare category. Membership to our research library can offer access to the full scope of these reports. Get in touch with a friendly member of our team to find out more – we’d love to hear from you!

    Stay ahead of industry trends, build your market research strategy and more.

    Olivia Lowden

    Written By Olivia Lowden

    Olivia Lowden is a Junior Copywriter at BCC Research, writing content on everything from sustainability to fintech. Before beginning at BCC Research, she received a First-Class Master’s Degree in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia.

    Guiding smart decisions every step of the way

    Guiding smart decisions every step of the way

    We are your trusted research partner, providing actionable insights and custom consulting across life sciences, advanced materials, and technology. Allow BCC Research to nurture your smartest business decisions today, tomorrow, and beyond.

    Contact Us