Home of EIT ICT Labs in Finland, the Open Innovation House, got crowded on 10-11 June with over 500 visitors interested in health and the improvements technology can bring to their lives.
The Upgraded Life Festival presented the coolest and newest in the area of biohacking, wearables and the Internet of Things.
“Like the open-source guru Tim O’Reilly said the most essential question in the Internet of Things is whether it will change our lives for the better or worse,” pointed out Marko Ahtisaari in his keynote. Ahtisaari, the ex-design lead for Nokia, currently works at the MIT Media Lab. He called for a holistic approach so that instead of just measuring e.g. your nutrition levels or heart rate, you could actually get a full image of your current situation with guidance on improvements.
Analysis is the key
The three parallel running presentations on stages all over the Open Innovation House introduced all kinds of tracking and analyzing services like top athlete recovery monitoring, the relationship between mindfulness and quantified self, healthy games and benefits of wild food. Camilla Tuominen, the founder of Emotion Tracker, talked about the importance of understanding your own emotions. Emotion Tracker is a mobile tool for people with mild mental problems helping them to identify and analyze their emotions.
Dr. Pekko Vehviläinen, the impersonation of a quantified man with dozens of wearable sensors all over his body day and night, talked about the improvements he has been able to make in his life with monitoring. He has not been sick a single day in 2.5 years. Pekko claims that in digital health the game has just begun and there is room for all players, but the one who can provide simplicity, interoperability and an added value to the customer with data analysis will win the game.
EIT ICT Labs business developers bringing added value
Upgraded Life Festival also offered start-ups 200 hours of consulting from experts in internationalization, taxation and law, business modeling, brand building and talent recruitment. EIT ICT Labs business developers hosted one of these clinics helping companies to expand their business in Europe.
EIT ICT Labs’ Health and Wellbeing Business Community members Fjuul, HeiaHeia , Wellmo and Firstbeat as well as many of the start-ups housed at the Helsinki CLC were presenting their products together with tens of other health companies. The start-up demos ranged from healthy mushroom tea, dry blood analysis, health and fitness tracking devices and services to emotion tracking rings. Hanna-Leena Back from Wellmo greatly appreciated the support from EIT now that the company is going international. “Our CEO is just on a trip in the Netherlands to see potential partners. These contacts were brought to us by EIT ICT Labs,” said Hanna-Leena. Wellmo enables the use of personal health tracking technologies as a part of comprehensive corporate wellness programs.
The Upgraded Life Festival was organized by Aalto University, EIT ICT Labs, HealthSpa, Wearable Wednesday Helsinki and Hardware HEL.