Philips’ Connecting the Community Project

Philips have kicked off a new project in Singapore to bring together content and service providers to equip a sample of households with broadband and connectivity products. Under the auspices of Singapore’s Infocomm Development Authority, the project will run for six months and residents will will participate in various ‘e’ services, including, Philips say, e-health, e-learning and e-security.

Philips are particularly interested in healthcare and the company are looking at options for providing services within the consumer’s home via a broadband connection. Applications include pop-up reminders for mediation appearing on TV screens, and the company currently delivers the service through SMS.

“We believe e-health services over broadband is one of the driving forces for establishing connected communities where patients are empowered to manage their health more effectively, and in the process help healthcare providers control costs,” said Andreas Wente, President and CEO of Philips Electronics Asia. “These personalized healthcare services would not only aim to help people with chronic conditions such as congestive heart failure manage their health more effectively, but ultimately help in maintaining a healthy digital lifestyle – for example, delivering weight management or employer health programs via a broadband enabled TV.”

The Connecting Community project is supported by Philips’ own InnoHub test bed facility, which crates a linked environment of communication and home entertainment devices that speak to one another. The InnoHub also will function as an ‘idea management facility’ for exploring the feasibility and commercial potential of innovations.

“This collaboration in Singapore embodies our vision of an emerging Connected Planet since it observes the daily habits and routines of normal families and, more importantly, identifies how their natural behavior responds to the latest state-of-the-art connectivity solutions,” said Cesar Vohringer, Chief Technology Officer, Philips Consumer Electronics. “Through an understanding of how these families interact not only virtually within the home but now through their communities, Philips can further realize its new brand promise by applying these discoveries in the creation of products that are advanced, easy to experience and designed around these consumers.”

Singapore’s IDA

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Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?