Innovation Igniter highlights the best in high-tech, medical devices and industrial design. This week’s topics include a couple of updates relating to robotics – in both the aviation and healthcare industries, an “artificial pancreas” intended to benefit Type 1 Diabetes patients and also some tips from the Senior Product and UX Designer at Fitbit.

Medtronic’s Long-Awaited ‘Artificial Pancreas’ Makes U.S. Debut. >

Here’s some big news for people living with Type 1 Diabetes. Just last week, Medtronic announced MiniMed 670G’s U.S. release. The world’s first “artificial pancreas,” the MiniMed 670G is an FDA-approved, hybrid closed-loop system that measures glucose in the fluid just beneath the skin of patients with Type 1 Diabetes, and then self-adjusts the delivery of background (basal) insulin to fit their needs.

high-tech & medical devices

Can the Newest Da Vinci Robot Smash Cost Barriers? >

Intuitive Surgical, a leader in the robotic surgery space, has found cost to be a major obstacle for bringing surgical robots further into the mainstream. For instance, the da Vinci Xi model’s European list price is a hefty €1.85 million. But the latest da Vinci model, da Vinci X, costs a substantially lower €1.3 million with the first year of service included, according to Wells Fargo’s Larry Biegelsen. With the service fee taken into account, Biegelsen indicates the newest da Vinci robot costs roughly €530K less than the da Vinci Xi. It’s worth keeping an eye on how this affects the surgical robot and related markets.

(See our past article about surgical robots, including the da Vinci systems.)

high-tech & medical devices

DARPA Robot Lands (simulated) Boeing 737. >

It’s official: robots are flying planes… or at least simulated planes. A DARPA Aircrew Labor In-Cockpit Automation System (ALIAS) robot landed a simulated Boeing 737 plane using one hand. The aim is to develop a quickly installed, cost-effective automated co-pilot that can take on much of the pilot’s work. This would enable pilots to focus on more complex decisions with limited distraction, particularly during crises.

UX Lessons from Wearable Design. >

The Senior Product and UX Designer at Fitbit, Analia Ibargoyen, shares her lessons from her time working on wearable design. Pro tips include: immerse yourself in the processes and schedules driving your project, work in cross-functional teams (including planning, documenting and communicating), prototype everything (because you can’t anticipate all issues), and don’t be afraid to speak up if something is operating poorly or could be a great opportunity in the future.

high-tech & medical devices

Our Authors: Matt Suits and Andreya Carlson

About The Author: Matt Suits

Matt has always loved interacting with clients to find solutions for their challenges. He was drawn to business development at Kaleidoscope because of the great potential he saw. After graduating from the Lindner College of Business at the University of Cincinnati, he worked with two startups, a marketing consultancy, a financial services company and the non-profit 3CDC. He believes that listening is the most important part of sales. In his free time, Matt enjoys movies, trying new foods, traveling and the great outdoors.

About the Author: Andreya Carlson

Andreya has always been fascinated by language and the written word, which drove her to earn a degree in Journalism from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University. She additionally earned a degree in Psychology, which kindled her interest in the healthcare industry. Her experience in marketing, communications, writing and editing includes work with a prominent human rights organization in England and a Cincinnati-based book publishing company. Andreya’s appetite for knowledge and passion for purposeful creation led her to cover design and healthcare advancement news for Kaleidoscope.