You wait years for a urinalysis company, then they hit them all at once. One of the notable trends at CES in Las Vegas this year was that the quantified self movement is going deeper. No longer satisfied with just measuring the heart rate, number of steps and EKG on the wrist, a new generation of startups is moving towards full medical analysis of the users.
Here are some to keep an eye on:
Health hardware company Withings this week released the U-Scan in Europe, and announced that it is working with the FDA to secure a US launch as well. The product uses a hands-free system that can take up to three months of measurements with a single cartridge.
Israeli startup Olive recently raised a $10 million funding round, promising to use only optics to analyze urine. The company uses a special toilet seat, no strips or additional accessories are required. It is initially aimed at care homes and vulnerable populations, but hopes to find a user base across a number of health sectors.
Vivoo has been making urine test strips at home for a long time, and it showed off the next iteration of its business, with a smart toilet. It is aimed at the housing market for caries, the elderly and healthcare services. It provides a convenient alternative for users who may struggle to perform urine testing with handheld urine strips.
We can only imagine it felt a little awkward with its “world’s first” marketing message on the stand. Especially given that the Vivoo booth was right next to Withing’s, where it showed off how it had beaten the “world’s first” to the market.
The product is a prototype, with a wider rollout in the not too distant future. The company raised $6 million in Series A funding in June 2021. The round was led by Draper Associates.
Special Zone Master
Don’t worry, it wasn’t all urine at CES this year. We also found SZM – Special Zone Master – which promises to do ‘visual analysis’ of yours other favorite body waste – poo. The company promises to analyze stool shapes and colors, record the time and frequency of stools, and also detect the presence of blood.
“Just by looking closely at the stool, we can find the first signs of a health problem and take action before it’s too late,” the company said in its marketing materials. We were curious to learn more, but the company’s founders were nowhere to be found – presumably taking a well-deserved bathroom break. It wasn’t entirely clear how far along the Korean startup was in its journey toward bringing its technology to a toilet seat near you.