Abbott, known for its continuous glucose monitor (CGM) devices, is moving into making general purpose consumer biosensing wearables. In a healthtech keynote at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Abbott’s chairman and CEO, Robert B Ford, announced it’s developing a new line of consumer biowearables — called Lingo — intended for more general fitness and wellness purposes.
“Technology gives us the power to digitize, decentralize and democratize healthcare, create a shared language between you and your doctor – and put more control of your health in your hands,” Mr. Ford said. “We’re creating a future that will bring you and your loved ones care that’s more personal and precise. It’s happening right now. And its potential is no less than incredible.”
The Lingo biowearables are being designed to translate your body’s unique language into actionable data to help you track and measure your general health and wellness. The sensor technology is being designed to track key signals in the body such as glucose, ketones and lactate, and could also be used one day to track alcohol levels, says a press release.
“This will be like having a window into your body,” Mr. Ford said. “It’s science that you will be able to access any time so you can understand what your body is telling you and what it needs. Our vision is that Lingo will go far beyond today’s wearables for consumers to help you proactively manage your health, nutrition and athletic performance.”
Lingo extends the Abbott sensing technology platform that Abbott pioneered in 2014 for people with diabetes, allowing people to continuously monitor their glucose levels with a small sensor on the back of the upper arm. Actress and comedian Sherri Shepherd shared live on the CES stage how FreeStyle Libre 2 changed her life, giving her glucose readings, right on her smartphone, unique to her body so she can make healthier decisions.
Abbott then built this technology platform to develop a product designed for athletes with the 2020 launch of Libre Sense Glucose Sport Biowearable in Europe. Elite athletes, like marathon world record holder Eliud Kipchoge, use this biowearable to optimize how they fuel their bodies for rigorous training. Lingo aims to expand glucose monitoring to people looking to manage their weight, sleep better, improve energy and think clearer.
Abbott is designing Lingo to measure other biomarkers beyond glucose in the future. A ketone biowearable is being developed to track ketones continuously, see how fast you are getting into ketosis, and understand exactly what keeps you there by providing insights on dieting and weight loss. A lactate biowearable is in development to track continuous lactate build up during exercise, which can be used as an indicator of athletic performance.