At an event in New Delhi today, MediaTek revealed a sketch of what the 2018’s going to look like from the company’s perspective. Apart from laying a lot of stress on the ‘Make in India’ initiative and its aim to bring more and more Indians closer to the internet with the ability for dual 4G VoLTE support in its MT6739 chipset, MediaTek also announced a new biosensor module.
As MediaTek claims, the MT6381 is the world’s first 6-in-1 biosensor module for smartphones. Which means, health readings like ECG, blood oxygen level, heart rate level, etc can be tracked just via the smartphone, with this sensor.
Surely, you would say smartphones like the Samsung Galaxies have had this feature since years now, what makes this new? Well, there is a very interesting difference between the two. Up till now what we had were readers essentially judging the heart rates, which calculates blood pressure based on those figures, and this is retrieved by a ‘heart rate sensor’ on the smartphone.
In the MediaTek Sensio module, a full flow is created for a more accurate reading, for which users are required to take a reading of the left index finger and the right thumb to complete the circuit. After a consistent reading for 60 seconds, the module would reveal readings for Heart-rate, Heart-Rate Variability, Blood Pressure Trends, Peripheral Oxygen Saturation (SpO2), Electrocardiography (ECG), and Photoplethysmography (PPG).
On the technical side of it lies another difference between the existing modules and the one showcased by MediaTek. Presently, the health sensors collect reading and send them off to the smartphone for processing. However, MediaTek Sensio is a standalone module that independently processes these readings.
Also, besides being integrated within a smartphone or some other gadget, the module can also be used as an independent device.
Specification wise, MediaTek Sensio MT6381 includes an integrated R and IR LEDs for reflective PPG measurement + 1-channel ECG analog front-end. It is compact with a measurement of 6.8 mm x 4.93 mm x 1.2 mm OLGA 22-pin package. The total external BOM on the module includes 4 caps and 2 electrodes. The module supports I2C /SPI digital interface.