Smartphone technology can be transformative to the deployment of lab-on-chip diagnostics
The rapid expansion of mobile technology is transforming the biomedical landscape. By 2016 there will be 260 M active smartphones in the US and millions of health accessories and software “apps” running off them. In parallel with this have come major technical achievements in lab-on-a-chip technology leading to incredible new biochemical sensors and molecular diagnostic devices. Despite these advancements, the uptake of lab-on-a-chip technologies at the consumer level has been somewhat limited. We believe that the widespread availability of smartphone technology and the capabilities they offer in terms of computation, communication, social networking, and imaging will be transformative to the deployment of lab-on-a-chip type technology both in the developed and developing world. In this paper we outline why we believe this is the case, the new business models that may emerge, and detail some specific application areas in which this synergy will have long term impact, namely: nutrition monitoring and disease diagnostics in limited resource settings.