Given how ubiquitous fitness trackers have become (even before fitness watches appear in droves in 2015 and beyond), think hydration tracking next.
About 3.3 million fitness bands and activity trackers were sold between April 2013 and March 2014 in the U.S. through bricks-and-mortar retailers or large-scale e-commerce sites, according to the NPD Group.
But no one ends up in the Emergency Room for being too sedentary…
Consider the Annals of Epidemiology, Volume 17, Issue 9 , Page 736, September 2007, and this article by S. Kim:
Preventable Hospitalizations of Dehydration: Implications of Inadequate Primary Health Care in the United States
“In the year 2004, approximately 518,000 hospitalizations were primarily due to the dehydration. Nearly 5.5 billion dollars in hospital charges were resulted from dehydration admissions. Approximately 88% were either an emergency or urgent type admissions; over 54% were admitted to a hospital through the emergency room; nearly 2% of admissions died at the hospital.”
Thus the market may be bi-modal– the chronically sick, and your legions of athletes, be they serious amateurs or professionals, plus weekend warriors who seem to be running, walking, biking and hiking in record numbers.
At least two companies are working on a hydration sensor: heavily VC-funded, Boston-based MC10, and a newer company seeking venture capital: Electrozyme, which is leveraging intellectual property spun out of the University of California/San Diego.
I predict you will see low cost hydration sensors for sports-minded consumers and dehydration-at-risk patients by 12/31/2015.