Alexa for Health

Health management from Alexa?

The University of Bristol are running an investigation into the potential use of Amazon's Alexa voice assistant for type 1 diabetes self management.

The Study

In the study, researchers aim to investigate whether using a specially developed Alexa ‘skill’ will help individuals manage their type 1 diabetes.

In the early stages of the study, they’re trying to find out what diabetes sufferers would require from the skill, and how it could help them to manage their diabetes.

Participant’s feedback from this initial stage of research will be used to start developing the Alexa skill which will be experimentally tested when fully developed, before making it available to the public

Volunteers wanted

Subjects are required to be 18 or older, a resident of the U.K and have been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, they should have access to a modern smartphone and ideally an Amazon Echo device with Alexa enabled.

If you’re eligible and interested you can email Tony Bladen – Computer Science masters student on tb17876@my.bristol.ac.uk

Participants will be given a £10 Amazon voucher as appreciation for their help with the survey.

Smarter than we first thought?

It looks like the voice assistant boom is here to stay. Far from being the cool new addition to the smart home market allowing voice control of everything in our home, it looks like our voice assistants could soon be helping with our health too.

Yes, theres a breakdown in communication every now and then (all Alexa owners know how frustrating it can be).

But with the backing of a company like Amazon, we’re pretty confident that in a few years (and a few software updates later) our voice assistants will become an integral part of our day to day lives, not only in the world of household smart technology but in healthcare and beyond.