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Wireless devices up category’s value

BY Michael Johnsen

While diagnostics may be a $1.1 billion business at retail, the value inherent in that business, especially within the sale of blood-pressure monitors and blood-glucose meters, can be so much more. Those businesses may lend themselves to new disease management revenue streams as products that can wirelessly upload readings to the cloud are accessed by remote healthcare professionals for review, depending upon the user’s permission settings.

(For the complete category review, including data, click here.)

“The drug store chains can be disruptive in terms of … how they connect and use this new relationship,” Jim Taschetta, iHealth chief marketing officer and head of retail sales, told DSN. “[Retailers] can now create a relationship with this user through this device and software. There’s an opportunity for the entire industry to think differently about blood-pressure monitors, blood-glucose meters and even scales. This is the time to disrupt.”

“There’s an opportunity there, [but] nobody’s really jumped on it yet,” said Ranndy Kellogg, COO of Omron Healthcare. “[But today] there’s no single cloud-based service that gathers [all the data into one place]. … The market is too young yet to understand who will win that race.”

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Switch-up for the ‘Purple Pill’

BY Michael Johnsen

Pfizer successfully switched Nexium to over-the-counter in late May, and with that brought a $6 billion book of prescription business to antacid aisles, according to IMS Health data compiled over 2012. First-month sales of the iconic “Purple Pill” already have generated $15.1 million, according to IRI, and that suggests the latest proton-pump inhibitor to make the switch could be well on its way to matching the current No. 1 antacid tablet, Prilosec OTC, which stands at $344.2 million in sales for the 52 weeks ended June 15 across total U.S. multi-outlets.

(For the complete category review, including data, click here.)

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Alka-Seltzer offers ‘Relief’

BY Michael Johnsen

Thanks in part to the launch of Alka-Seltzer Fruit Chews in May of last year, the Alka-Seltzer brand has experienced a resurgence within the antacid tablet category. Brand sales were up 580.5% to $16 million for the 52 weeks ended June 15, according to IRI data across total U.S. multi-outlets. The brand not only appeals to a new generation of consumers, but with its gummy-like formula, it may still hold sway among the older generation looking for non-pill remedies. Varieties include ReliefChews, Heartburn ReliefChews and Heartburn + Gas ReliefChews.

(For the complete category review, including data, click here.)

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