Philips Korea has entered the wireless ultrasound device market led by Healcerion. Industry watchers expect the two will inevitably clash with each other both here and abroad.
The Korean offshoot of the Dutch healthcare firm held a news conference at its head office in Seoul Tuesday, to launch Lumify, a mobile application-based ultrasound machine. Philips introduced the device in the U.S. in 2015. The product arrived in Korea three years after the global launch.
|Philip Korea’s mobile ultrasound device Lumify|
Physicians can check ultrasound scans through Lumify’s mobile device, which is connected to an application and three portable ultrasound transducers.
Using it is quite simple, the company said. Medical professionals can download Lumify app on their Android-based mobile device, and connect Philips transducers to the mobile device, run the app, and do the ultrasound scanning.
Three transducers – L12-4, S4-1, and C5-2 -- can examine three different areas: L12-4 can capture blood vessels and musculoskeletal images; S4-1, the heart; and C5-2, the abdomen (liver, pancreas, kidney and spleen), womb, and lungs. The transducer is connected to a mobile device via a USB, and the USB is interchangeable, making it compatible with a variety of mobile devices.
Lumify also uses cloud-enabled technology to connect with PACS (Picture Archiving and Communication System), shared networks and system directories. Through app updates, healthcare providers can use the latest version of the software.
“Lumify is super light and easy to carry. It is useful for medical exams on-the-spot. Its high-quality images can be used in various medical institutions in a wide range of medical services,” said Hwang Kyu-tae, head of the ultrasound business at Philips Korea.
The mobile ultrasound device can be used in emergency rooms, intensive care units, hospital wards, general hospitals, clinics, emergency helicopters, disaster scenes, military units, vessels, airplanes, sports medicine, mobile medical service, overseas medical volunteering, medical visits to the disabled, medical education institutions, and veterinary hospitals, he said.
Lumify is available only on Android-based mobile devices. Philips said it was working on an iOS-based app. Lumify is priced between 15 million won ($13,290) and 20 million won per unit.
“We have launched the product in 13 countries, and medical institutions are using over 10,000 units of Lumify,” Hwang said. “In Korea, we expect that all university hospitals will use 50 units per year. We plan to expand the sales to local hospitals and veterinary clinics.”
Philips Korea faces competition with Healcerion, the frontrunner in the mobile ultrasound device market.
Medical doctor and CEO Ryu Jeong-won founded Healcerion in 2012. The company introduced Sonon, the world’s first wireless portable ultrasound scanner that can connect to smartphones in 2014.
Sonon weighs about 390g and connects to mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet PCs. It works both on Android and iOS.
Healcerion’s product won approval as a medical device in Korea, Europe, Canada, and the U.S. The company started to sell the equipment in the U.S. in July. It is also shipping it to China and Japan.
Recently, Healcerion signed an agreement with NASDAQ-listed firm Heska to supply $5 million worth Sonon products.
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