A set of new smart diapers for children that would be able to track a child’s urine as well as sleep will be made by Pampers, the company announced earlier this week.
A smart diaper developed on the same principle that sends out a text alter to parent to tell them that their child has pooped was launched last year in Korea by Pampers’ rival Huggies.
The new set of smart diapers from Pampers is called the Lumi and is set to be launched in the US this fall. It comprises of an activity sensor that is attached to a “landing” at the front of a baby’s diaper. A pack of the smart diaper would be available in a 10-day supply pack and a baby monitor. A kid’s pee is logged and patterns are identified by the sensor which functions along with a corresponding app. The company has not finalized the price of the new product.
This is a part of the so-called Internet-of-Things tech sphere that is used for tracking everything electronic – ranging from informing about the person ringing their doorbell to the food stored inside a refrigerator. In recent years, there has been a flood of connected products in the baby industry and includes connected onesies which also function as sleep trackers and a robotic crib that can rock a baby’s cradle by itself to put it to sleep.
“Parents didn’t ask for a poo or pee alarm; they wanted something more like the smart watches of today,” a Pampers spokesperson told the media. “The activity sensor tracks baby’s sleep and since it’s there on the diaper, it can also track … if a diaper is wet.”
There can however be issues of security and privacy with the smart diapers just like any other connected product. Threat of hacking as well as the threat of exposure of personal information stored in any app to hackers or the makers or to third party partners exists with smart diapers.
A baby’s name, sex, date of birth and a 24-hour archive of video from the monitor would be the account information that will include, said a Pampers spokesperson. Putting up a profile photo is optional for the parents.
“I do want to re-iterate that we take privacy and security very seriously,” the spokesperson said.” Only Lumi by Pampers account holders with their valid credentials will be able to access their baby’s data on the Lumi app.”
While this new technology can be helpful for some parents, there are some certain drawbacks too, say experts.
“Undoubtedly, for those parents who are concerned about their newborn’s bathroom functions — to inform something like constipation or if a kid is hydrated enough when they’re sick — this data could be very useful over brief periods,” said David Anderson, senior director at the Child Mind Institute. “Not to mention that it may even be useful for potty-training parents.”
Additionally, those parents who are sleep training their baby would find the sleep tracking feature to be especially helpful.
“But there’s that trade-off that happens with data and anxiety,” he said. “There may be behavior that is completely within an acceptable range, but an anxious parent is likely to find any deviations from reliable norms a cause for concern. So while data is generally good, we’re likely to see an increase in calls to pediatricians.”
(Adapted from CNN.com)