Google working on many similar technologies
As per the patent, the “Needle-Free Blood Draw” device sends an “abrupt surge” of gas into a barrel that can pierce the skin without a needle. After the blood comes out from the skin, it is collected using a negative pressure barrel. Such a technology will be extremely useful for people with diabetes who regularly need to check their glucose levels.
“Such an application might be used to draw a small amount of blood, for example, for a glucose test,” the patent reads.
Google is already working with Novartis on developing smart lenses that will be able to test tears to track blood sugar levels. In addition, the Internet giant is working on a cloud-connected sensor which can be used for monitoring glucose levels.
Big opportunity in the segment
In May 2014, Google filed the patent for the “Needle-Free Blood Draw,” which was approved only last week. Even though the patent has been granted, there is no surety that such a device will see the light of day, as filing patents is common among tech firms, but not all are developed into a product. But if Google is able to successfully develop and market these health-related products products, they will make life easier for many people and bring in big revenues for the tech firm. In U.S. alone there are around 29 million individuals with diabetes. Also WHO estimated that in 2014, around 9% of adults aged 18 and above suffered from diabetes. In 2012, the health agency linked around 1.5 million deaths to diabetes.
“[W]e hold patents on a variety of ideas — some of those ideas later mature into real products or services, some don’t. Prospective product announcements should not necessarily be inferred from our patents,” Google told The Verge.
On Friday, Google stock closed up 1.43% at $779.21. Year to date, the stock is up by almost 47% while in the last one month, it is up by over 2%.