BlackBerry is taking a deep dive into the medical technology sector with the announcement of multiple new partnerships.
One of them is with OneBio, a firm that is building a medical data platform based on blockchain, and designed to give end users substantial control over how they share their biodata with other individuals and organizations. BlackBerry is bringing its Network Operation Center to the table, and is offering use of the platform to the Global Commission, a firm focused on speeding up medical diagnoses of rare diseases in children, which will launch a pilot program trialing the blockchain-based biodata platform.
Meanwhile, the Mackenzie Innovation Institute, a medical technology innovation consultant, has teamed up with BlackBerry to explore how the latter’s recently launched Spark enterprise Internet of Things platform could be integrated with its own; and Melanoma Institute Australia has adopted the BlackBerry Workspaces platform to enable healthcare practitioners and researchers to digitally share patient and trial data, secured with encryption.
Additionally, BlackBerry has announced a new operating system for medical devices including “robotic surgical instruments, patient monitoring systems, infusion pumps, blood analysis systems, and other safety-critical products that must pass stringent regulatory approval,” according to a statement from the company. Dubbed “QNX OS for Medical 2.0”, the operating system is compliant with IEC 62304 safety standards.
BlackBerry’s huge leap into the medical technology sector may come as a surprise to those who still think of it as a smartphone company, but given its recent efforts in developing secure communications technologies for the enterprise and even automotive IT solutions, it makes sense for BlackBerry to translate these technologies into the rapidly digitizing field of healthcare.