GoWalk – ‘Fitbit’ for Elderly People to Keep them Independent and Healthy
Luke Robinson, Michael Castle
GoWalk is a health and wellbeing coach specifically designed for elderly people. It is a keyfob containing a GPS module, battery and wireless recharger. Activity trackers such as Fitbit are highly successful, with sales of $1.86B last year, with over 29 million devices in use. However, few elderly people use fitness trackers and find smartphone apps difficult to use. The innovation of GoWalk is a GPS tracker in a keyfob, with wireless recharging and display of results in an email, on a tablet or laptop. The GoWalk keyfob is attached to the house-keys and the house-keys are stored near the front door, next to a wireless recharger, so that the users do not need to remember to recharge their keyfob. Recent advancements in GNSS technology give long battery life from a small keyfob. Galileo GNSS improves the accuracy of the tracking data. People aspire to remain fit and healthy, but need regular encouragement. GoWalk helps people to maintain a regular fitness routine by using gamification techniques such as targets, leader boards etc. The benefits of maintaining fitness are maintaining independence and improved self-confidence. GoWalk reduces the risks of sudden illness and entering hospital.