Google, Flex team to connect medical device information in the Cloud

Flex, which provides components for speakers, coffee machines and medical devices, is teaming with Google to help healthcare device makers connect the massive amount of information gathered by products like wearables, insulin pumps and heart monitors to Google Cloud.

The goal of the partnership is to create a standard for medical devices to send data to the internet for analysis. The McKinsey analyst group has estimated that using Google-style data processing in healthcare could add as much as $100 billion to the market.

As part of deal, Flex has unveiled Brightinsight, a platform that helps device manufacturers link their products to the internet as well as to other devices. Brightinsight is designed to link with Google Cloud. Flex will be both a Google partner and customer, but will act as the direct seller to manufacturers, the company said.

"We saw the need for a secure cloud platform designed to support highly-regulated connected drug delivery and medical devices, going beyond simple connectivity to deliver real-time intelligence and actionable insights," Kal Patel, M.D., a senior vice president at Flex, said in a statement. "Flex can combine our cross-industry capabilities to simplify our customers' digital transformation."

Given the huge amounts of data currently collected by healthcare devices, the two companies believe Brightinsight—using AI in a secure environment—will be able to create a rapid feedback loop that will help improve patient care and enhance drug therapy delivery and management. 

Brightinsight is designed to support CE-marked and FDA-regulated Class I, II and III medical devices, and its platform will let pharmaceutical and medical technology companies accelerate their time to market, the company said.