The wearable industry is growing and diverse. However, despite the variety in device producers and served purposes, many wearables include biosensors that can measure health parameters, such as heart rate. This makes them potentially useful or even disruptive for healthcare; particularly, for its remote delivery mode that is referred to as telehealth. Wearables and consumer technologies can bring changes to the current value network of telehealth industry by creating new business roles and attracting new stakeholders. However, traditionally regulated telehealth industry may be reluctant to accept unregulated non-medical devices. Furthermore, apart from the potential impact of wearables, the future of the industry is affected by other factors, which need to be understood. This article analyzes a potential evolution of the telehealth value network. For that, we first identified the current trends in the evolution of telehealth technologies and products based on the quantitative analysis and review of three different types of literature – scientific publications, patents, and press releases. Furthermore, we discussed the actors that can drive the future telehealth industry by taking a key role in its value network. The study indicates that technologies and products brought by consumer companies will be used in telehealth for the self-management of chronic diseases and wellness. To facilitate the interaction of the previously separated unregulated consumer and regulated medical domains of telehealth, a new health data aggregation role may emerge and take a central position in the value network. While several candidates for this role can be identified, currently, none of them has the full required expertise.
|Journal||Technological Forecasting and Social Change|
|Early online date||18 Jun 2018|
|Publication status||Published - 10 Jul 2018|
|MoE publication type||A1 Journal article-refereed|
- Industry evolution, Internet of things, Patent, Press release, Publication, Value network, Wearable device