Editor's Corner

Live CTIA Wireless 2007 Coverage Sponsored by Access

Qualcomm's Rev. A powered robotic doctor
At the Qualcomm press conference this morning there was some talk about MediaFLO, chipsets and the evolution of Rev. A and Rev. B, but the real showstopper was a Rev. A powered robotic doctor. 

CEO Paul Jacobs introduced his colleague Dr. Yulung Wang of inTouch Technologies to demonstrate a new technology for the healthcare industry: Only Dr. Wang was not sitting alongside Jacobs on the panel. Instead, a remote controlled machine that looked like a vacuum cleaner with a 20 inch flat screen mounted to the handle, wheeled into the room showing Wang's face on the screen. Wang's voice boomed over the room's loud speakers greeting the stunned audience.

Qualcomm hooked the "robot" up to a Rev. A network, which allowed Wang to participate remotely in the press conference. Wang then introduced a non-invasive surgeon who was in-the-flesh at the press conference. The doctor proceeded to activate his own Rev. A powered robot, which was physically located at a hospital 30 miles outside of Kansas City. The audience watched as he remotely unplugged the robot and wheeled over to a nurse's station. After inquiring about how one of his patient's was doing, he decided to wheel over to her room and check on her. After the nurse located where the patient's chest pain was precisely, the doctor diagnosed her with a gall bladder problem.

The dramatic demonstration definitively showed that wireless data networks aren't solely a mobile content play. Verticals like the healthcare industry, which sorely lacks an adequate number of nurses and doctors to serve the aging Baby Boomer generation, could benefit from this technology far more than the movie studios and record labels of the world. -Brian