A booming amount of health data is generated on personal devices such as fitness trackers, smartphones, implants or other devices. IBM on Monday announced collaboration with Apple, Medtronic, and Johnson & Johnson and others to use its Watson artificial intelligence system to give users life-saving insights and advice from personal health information gathered from these devices.
'Watson' is a cognitive computing system that bested human competition in a Jeopardy trivia television game show. Under this partnership IBM will be able to handle data collected using health applications from Apple mobile devices. The initiative is trying to take advantage of medical records increasingly being digitized, by allowing quick access for patients and healthcare providers if the information can be stored and shared effectively. IBM wants to create a platform for this data sharing.
John Kelly, IBM senior vice president, said, "All this data can be overwhelming for providers and patients alike, but it also presents an unprecedented opportunity to transform the ways in which we manage our health. We need better ways to tap into and analyze all of this information in real-time to benefit patients and to improve wellness globally."
IBM is expecting more companies to join the health platform, which it envisions growing to a global scale. The company said, "It is acquiring a pair of healthcare technology companies and establishing an IBM health unit."
Jeff Williams, Apple senior vice president of operations, said, "Now IBM's secure cloud and analytics capabilities provide additional tools to help accelerate discoveries across a wide variety of health issues."