Withings smart scales and blood pressure cuff add cellular for IoT ease

Withings is launching two new connected health devices, a smart scale and a blood pressure monitor, with cellular onboard so that they can get online even without WiFi or Bluetooth. The Withings Body Pro cellular smart scale and Withings BPM Connect Pro cellular blood pressure monitor are designed to make remote patient monitoring more straightforward, particularly during a time when telehealth services have moved to the fore.

Connected scales and blood pressure cuffs aren't new, and indeed Withings has offered several such products in the past before. Typically, however, they rely on a Bluetooth connection to a nearby smartphone, or a WiFi connection to a home or doctors' office router, to get online.

Withings' new versions, though, include those radios plus a cellular modem. The idea is that doctors will be able to give out the two products and bypass any connectivity headaches, making sure that patient readings are being uploaded on a daily basis.

The Withings Body Pro cellular smart scale has a small monochrome display built in, which shows not only weight but how that has trended over time. It also shows daily local weather forecasts, which are intended to coax patients onto the scales each morning. The battery is designed to last for 12 months.

As for the Withings BPM Connect Pro cellular blood pressure monitor, that has a six month rechargeable battery. It's also designed for easy use, with a single button and a built-in display. A color-coded system flags any signs of prehypertension, Stage 1 or 2 hypertension, or hypertensive crisis.

Both are designed to work with the Withings HIPAA Cloud, with end-to-end encryption. Once any professional monitoring is complete, meanwhile, the cellular data can be deactivated, but the WiFi and Bluetooth will remain working. That's intended so that patients will continue tracking their health, Withings says.

Withings isn't planning on selling these new health monitoring devices direct to end-users, though it has consumer-friendly, non-cellular versions of both product lines. Instead they're being targeted at healthcare providers like GPs and specialists, who'll be able to either order them themselves, or have them shipped preconfigured directly to patients.