The Mobile Glucose Meters Are Coming!

Two new FDA-cleared mobile diabetes meters are set to hit the market soon. The Telcare BGM will be available next week, and the iBGStar, which received FDA clearance in December, has yet to announce a release date. IBGStar is a small device that plugs directly into the iPhone and transmits data to the iBGStar Diabetes Manager App while the Telcare meter wirelessly sends data to the iPhone.

Diabetes patients are eager to give devices like these a try as both look like they’ll be a convenient way to monitor blood glucose levels. But are all the bugs worked out with these new devices and are they worth the switch? Amy Tenderich of the popular blog Diabetes Mine reviewed the iBGStar, and Wall Street Journal columnist Walt Mossberg recently wrote about the Telcare meter. Here’s a summary of their takes:


Amy Tenderich, Diabetes Mine

  • The small meter plugs right into the iPhone, so you don’t have to carry a large additional device
  • You can use the device separate from your iPhone, and it will upload the data later when you plug it into your phone
  • The accompanying iPhone app is slick and features beach, mountain, desert, cityscape and Farm wallpaper backgrounds
  • The app allows for the data to be e-mailed to a doctor or nurse or transferred to a computer
  • Unfortunately, the app doesn’t analyze your data, it only tracks it
  • Tenderich didn’t mention how much the device would cost, but an article from electronics news site Electronista says it will be about $80

Tenderich’s take home message:

“It’s small; it’s easy to use; it looks really cool; the app is more sophisticated than most, yet very intuitive; and it’s integrated with your cell phone, for God’s sake! It’s everything we’ve been waiting for!”

Read the full review here.

Telcare BGM

Walt Mossberg, Wall Street Journal

  • The system automatically provides feedback and tells you if you’re in your range, and it calculates daily averages
  • You can access information online or on your iPhone
  • With permission, online data can be viewed by a doctor, caregiver or family member
  • It’s expensive with a $150 cost for the meter, wall charger and case
  • It’s larger than most other glucose meters but lightweight
  • There are some bugs (that can sometimes lead to inaccurate readings) that company says it will work out by official launch

Mossberg’s take home message:

“As a Type 2 diabetic myself, I found the Telcare meter a refreshing change, and a significant step toward bringing consumer medical devices closer to the world of modern technology.”

Read the full review here.

Health 2.0