The idea is to use a WiFi network as a technology platform, connecting sensors with analysis via the Internet so that we have better control over our homes, our possessions, and our independent lives.
Both are similar platforms. Wireless sensors (fairly large in the case of QuietCare) are placed near doors, and next to such things as refrigerators and medicine cabinets. These detect the patient's motions through the house during the day, and send results to a PC in the home. That PC, in turn, then reports to a central server over the Internet.
The sensors keep their clocks going and quickly learn about the patient's habits -- when they wake up, how they move about. This database is then matched against current actions, and if there's a discrepancy a quick phone call may take care of things. Or a visit from a care-giver may be required. Or the ambulance. Lusora adds a "panic button," usually a necklace, which patients can use themselves to call for help at any time.
This is literally a 'killer app' in that it can save your life of the life of someone close to you. And it's much less expensive than hiring a full time home care worker.
QuietCare was first to market and already has announced its pricing -- about $200 for installation, about $90/month for service. If that sounds pricey, consider that the alternative would to have a caregiver on site at all times. Now it's cheap.
Lusora is not yet fully in the market, and only says monitoring will cost $40-$50/month.
This is the kind of solution that has to reach a mass market over the next two decades. There just isn't enough money to give everyone a full-time health-care worker. We have to improve the productivity of these people, and automation benefits them enormously. More important, a monitoring solution lets people age in place, reducing the need for assisted living facilities. It's also much better for the patient to stay in their familiar, comfortable surroundings for as long as possible.
We will be tracking this market carefully as it develops.