Uniqueness of Oura Ring and usefulness for coronavirus diagnostics
The company that manufactures Oura ring sleep-tracking devices has raised $28 million in investments. The participants of the round were Gradient Ventures – a subsidiary of Google Corporation, the fintech start-up Square and Forerunner Ventures.
The Finnish company Oura became known by developing special rings that read the quantity and quality of sleep. These devices are popular around the world, providing the startup with a second round of funding. The funds allocated to it will be used to increase the number of employees, the company now has 100 employees.
Oura Ring devices appeared on the Finnish market in 2013. They are rings that not only monitor sleep-related processes, but also provide information on body temperature, heart rate and pedometer. The products are made of titanium alloy, inside which there are temperature sensors, gyroscope and accelerometer. Ring from Oura startup is synchronized with a smartphone. Thanks to a special application, all data is received by the owner’s mobile device.
Since its foundation, the company has attracted investments amounting to $48.3 million. Among those who have invested in the development of the brand are basketball player Shaquille O’Neal, actor Will Smith, cyclist Lance Armstrong and other famous people.
The cost of one ring is $300-400 and it has been sold about 150 thousand worldwide. Oura Ring looks like a laconic monochrome jewelry, the company offers a variety of colors and shapes.
The functionality of the device became indispensable during the outbreak of the coronavirus epidemic. That’s why it was decided to equip San Francisco medical professionals with Oura’s development. Thanks to it, 2,000 ambulance staff were able to monitor patients’ temperature, pulse and a number of other indicators, which made it possible to quickly identify signs of disease. In parallel, the developers of the device were working on an algorithm that will allow early diagnosis of COVID-19. To do this, Oura asked its customers to share their medical data to improve the device based on this information.
Work is now under way to enable the ring to detect coronavirus before the first symptoms. This algorithm will allow not only physicians to respond quickly and to carry out treatment in the early stages, but the person to isolate themselves in order not to endanger their relatives.
Such a function in the Oura Ring is relevant, because in the autumn, specialists expect the second wave of coronavirus. The device can report a possible infection immediately and a certain amount of time, in this case invaluable, must pass for the examination of doctors. Infectionists are already preparing for the outbreak to minimize the number of cases.