The Smartphone as a Tool for Disruption

By December 9, 2016Smartphones

Has your Smartphone ever saved your life?

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Many of Prestigio’s phones feature Snapdragon’s powerful processors. The makers of Snapdragon decided to draw attention to the amazing technology inside our everyday smart devices. They did this by going to the trouble to write and shoot a 30 minute film that illustrates just this. In the fictional world they created, a man must trace his missing girlfriend aided only by the cell phone she has left behind. “Our lives are in our devices. But is her phone enough to save her life.” is the movie’s tagline. It’s a fun and different perspective on the surprisingly important role tech can play in every day living. Check out the trailer or give the whole film a go.

 

Endless Possibilities

Beyond any imaginary scenario, real life might be stranger than fiction when it comes to ways in which our phones can save the day and be a powerful disrupter in a surprising amount of situations. Here are some actual and awesome real life examples in ways in which a Smartphone has not only had a positive impact but really can save lives!

Disrupting Death: Healthcare made Mobile

In the field of healthcare, Smartphone are major disrupters. Smartphone Tech is turning out to be a powerful partner in paving the way to better health. Everything from fitness trackers to nutrition apps, we are only on the tip of the iceberg in exploring the range of what is possible.

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Fighting Infectious Diseases in Malawi

The Non-Profit Organization (NPO), The Welcome Trust has partnered with the Meningitis Research Foundation to address the Meningitis crisis in Malawi. Part of the problem is that Malawian hospitals and clinics do not operate off of a Triage system which would identify and treat serious cases first. This meant that many critically ill children and adults suffering from Meningitis passed away before receiving medical help, sometimes even while at the clinic’s waiting to be seen.

Enter the Smartphone. By employing a unique mobile, ‘triage’ based program, trained workers now go through waiting rooms daily, using the phone to assess and sort patients into a colour coded system. They are then given a paper wristband. Critical suspected cases of meningitis are coded red with suspicious cases marked yellow. Green cases go to those unlikely to be facing a deadly health crisis. Doctors then attend immediately to the most urgent cases. This system is saving lives!

Additionally, as a part of a larger countrywide initiative, the information collected from rural clinics is synced to researchers at the end of each day. This allows medical workers to identify potential outbreaks, trace epidemics and gain awareness of geographic areas that may benefit from enhanced targeted prevention education.

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Extending the ‘Golden Hour’ in the USA

Health professionals around the world are taught that it is the first hour after severe trauma or injury that is the most vital time. Access to services during this critical hour can make a life or death difference. It is for this reason that Dr. Roy Yamada an Emergency Medical Services (EMS) director in Dallas, Texas has begun to include ultrasound technology in his ambulances. This ultrasound technology can work off of a smart device platform! In transit while a patient is on the way to the hospital, EMS staff can use the program over wireless internet to send ultrasound images of injuries to waiting doctors and medical teams. This preview helps focus the preparation and facilitate equipment needed for the patient’s arrival. Each minute saved is a crucial one that extends the patient’s chance of survival!

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Reproductive Health

Reducing maternal and infant mortality in Communities in Cameroon

When Alain Nteff became upset about the maternal and newborn baby death rate in his community he set about using his phone to help make a difference. Nteff is a 22 year old innovator from Cameroon who has drawn accolades from Forbes for the mobile app he invented. Named ‘Gifted Mom’ the app helps calculate due dates, ensure pregnant women get to their doctor appointments, and distributes helpful information to moms-to-be and new mothers. The extra attention is catching potentially disastrous elements and helping decrease the mortality rate of women giving birth and their babies!

The information the app sends and collects data from women is helping shape the future of how women receive care.

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Assistance for Women Worldwide

Harvard medical school developed the free app Virtual Nurse to help answer birth control related questions and complete risk assessments to let a woman know if she might need to see a doctor immediately.

Periodtracker is one among several apps that provides personal tracking in order to forecast when a woman’s unique cycle will start.

For women or couples wanting to become pregnant, apps such as Fertility Friend will help project fertility based on calculating advanced variables.

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Beyond the Medical: Activate the Activists

Smartphones can also be used to aid in mobilizing voices in protest against war, injustice and poverty. The ability to encrypt messages is important. It can help keep the government and opposition forces from prosecuting (or doing worse) to those with dissenting ideas. Example of the Smartphone extending freedom in restrictive political times can include Chinese Democracy Activists and Egyptian Student Protesters.

For guaranteed privacy check out the highly sophisticated messaging service Signal created by Open Whisper Systems. While you may want to use it just because its free and a great platform, remember this end-to-end encryption is a vital tool to individuals who do not live in free societies.

Without innovation like end-to-end encryption some of our world’s most inspiring voices could be silenced!

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