On World Health Day, here are the apps and gadgets you need

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On World Health Day, here are the apps and gadgets you need
Mankind has come a long way since the smallpox vaccine and penicillin. While these were discoveries that laid the foundation stone for modern day improvements in the sector, technology now is taking over the role of not just discovering new vistas, but also incorporating the same into pocket sized devices as well as, applications that can be used over smartphones. Taking a cue from wearable technology, the health sector now has found takers in the field of tracking bracelets and fitness trackers thereby taking innovation to a new level. Recently at a media event organised by Philips India, the company unveiled a portable ECG scanner, a portable Ultrasound scanner (Mobile Obstetrical Monitoring), IntelliSpace Consultative Critical Care (ICCC), a telehealth solution for remote intensive care delivery in rural and urban areas of India. On the occasion of World Health Day we take a look at some of these devices and applications that have found popularity in the medical fraternity and the general public.

Track-a-thon:

No it is not a new game being inducted into the Olympics, but with the wide array of fitness trackers and bracelets that are available in the market for users.

Fitbit Flex:

With a rubberised bracelet that is high on comfort along with a fluid design (LED Lights), it not only doubles up as a wireless tracker that sync's with an app to monitor sleep patterns, calories burnt and distance walked through the day (see main image). Not only does it work towards monitoring but also reminds users of their fitness goals. Smart methods to motivate couch potatoes, we guess. Not exactly overpriced but the Fitbit Flex could set a user back by $99 (approximately Rs. 6,100).

Nike Fuel Band:

The Nike+ app keeps getting better. From a small chip inserted into Nike+ enabled running shoes to now fitness trackers that sync with the iPhone and iPod seamlessly to provide the necessary data Nike's taking its fitness goals very seriously. Using something called Fuel Points, the Fuel band motivates users by giving congratulatory messages once a particular Fuel Point target has been achieved. Also doubling up as a watch the device is not bulky but has its limitations with no sleep tracking built in. On the other hand it provides with the regular features of workout count, calorie count amongst others. It doesn't come cheap with its Rs. 12,500 price tag built in.

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GoQii Life Fitness Tracker with Lifestyle Coaching:

Featuring an advanced wearable tracker, the GoQii Life Fitness Tracker has some of the world's leading fitness coaches help users to activate that perfect lifestyle. Using Bluetooth to sync easily and using low energy in the process, the device has a 360-degree motion sensor, measures activity and sleep quality and has a custom designed vibration to wake a user at a desired time. It is currently available in India via Snapdeal for prices ranging from Rs. 5,999 - Rs. 9,999.

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The App Wrap-up:

While trackers are making use of the Internet and sensors within them for helping provide for accurate diagnostics, for those who cannot afford to pay for expensive devices, there are apps on the Google Play Store and the iTunes Store that enables users to convert their smartphones to trackers.

Pact: (for iPhone and Android) Feel pangs of guilt after a binge eating spree that includes foods destined to fatten you up? The Pact app is here to do just the same. Literally a pact, the app allows users to state their goals. Following it, the users are paid money if and when they achieve their goals. On the flipside, users have to pay in the event that they indulge on that extra slice of chocolate cake or a deep fried burger. And believe it or not, the thought of earning extra pesos or having to shell a tide sum for not honouring the 'Pact' has moved users to having improved food habits.

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PUMATRAC V2.0: (for Android) Am improvement over the previous version of the PUMATRAC the new one provides insights on how external conditions (day of the week, location, and weather) and personal behaviours (music choices and social media activity) affect your running performance. The app will help the runners will gain insights on their runscore. Distance run, GPS, calories burned, are the other features on it.

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Barre3: (for iPhone $4.99- approximately Rs. 305) Approved by Madonna, the app is designed for those, who claim to have run out of time or have none of it to go to the gym. It makes use of ballet, yoga and Pilates to create low-impact workouts sessions that are impactful and are 10-minute long. Next time you meet a friend or that work colleague who laments about not having time to hit the gym, you know what to do.

barre_3_fitness_app.jpgFitStar Basic: (for iPhone and iPad)- Ok this one is to eliminate the need of a personal trainer completely. Customising workouts based on individual body structures, capabilities, goals, and feedback, is its thing. And post the exercise users have to rate the exercise, which in turn allows the app to adjust the intensity and the long-term viability of its goals accordingly. A premium version is available for $4.99 (approximately Rs. 305) per month, but the basic one works fine too for newbies.
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