One one hand it’s amazing to think of how comfortable a flight could be — on the other hand, I have to wonder if I want the flight crew to be aware of all my vitals!
British Airways has filed a patent for a digital “smart pill” that records how you’re feeling and sends the information to the crew to respond accordingly.
The ‘ingestible sensor,” which will potentially be served to passengers in the future, is aimed to improve travel experience by measuring our body temperature, heart-rate and stomach acidity, as well as how much we’re moving in our seats.
Once the data is transferred to the flight crew, they will be able to properly respond to our needs, without the need for manual user requests. This has the potential to do more than alert the crew and staff when there’s a medical emergency.
This “smart pill” will also improve our flight experience by solving small issues we’re not necessarily fully aware of. For instance, when we’re asleep, flight attendants are often weary to wake us up for meal service, but maybe with this new data attendants will be able to gauge a customer’s hunger level.
The system “for controlling the travel environment for a passenger” is detailed and explained in a patent application filed to the Intellectual Property Office. You can check it out here.
“Ingestible sensors” (Or: a digital pill) have been in use for several years now. Proteus Digital Health and Otsuka Pharma, for instance, have been using such pills as part of a pill-sensor-smartphone system, with intention of giving healthcare professionals the ability to monitor whether patients had been following doctors’ orders.
This technology naturally fits the healthcare industry, and seems to have a great potential in preventing illness “early discovery.” It looks like British Airways has already taken this innovation one step forward, looking to improve the small things that make our flight a not-so-great experience.