TAIWAN – Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., also known as Foxconn Technology Group in the market, has announced that it is expanding into the Southeast Asian medical device market with its latest partnership in Taiwan, CNA News reports.

As reported by CNA News, Chiang Chih-hsiung, head of the iPhone assembler’s B business group, the company plans to test the waters in the Southeast Asian market next year at the earliest, using the Taiwanese market as a launchpad for digital healthcare device development.

Hon Hai will seek additional collaboration in the development of heartbeat, blood oxygen, and blood sugar monitors, as well as electrocardiography devices.

The multinational electronics company has agreed to collaborate on the development of a long-distance care monitoring platform with consumer electronics supplier Taiwan Biophotonic Corp. (tBPC) and the government-backed Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI).

They will work together to integrate tBPC’s optical sensors with Foxconn’s medical hardware, as well as the former’s medical algorithms into overall software development.

The remote care monitoring platform will be supported and guided by ITRI’s research in electro-optics, information communication, and microsystems.

The consortium plans to test their upcoming technology in a year-long clinical trial at New Taipei’s Tucheng Hospital. The new system will need to be certified by the health authorities in the markets it enters.

Negotiations for broader cooperation are also underway with Chang Gung Memorial Hospital and several elderly care centers in an effort to accelerate the rate at which new devices hit the local market and enter international markets.

Hon Hai intends to use its strengths in information and communications technology to develop digital healthcare devices and value-added smart medical devices.

The company’s vision is to create a long-distance healthcare monitoring platform by combining its hardware and software expertise, as well as the physical and virtual technologies it has mastered, such as app interfaces and cloud-based applications, to assist medical personnel in monitoring patients from a distance.

According to ITRI executive vice president Alex Peng, the Ministry of Economic Affairs’ establishment of the Taiwan Integrated Biomedical Industrial Center paved the way for closer ties with Hon Hai and Taiwan Biophotonic.

According to a McKinsey & Co. report from last year, the digital health market in Asia could reach US$100 billion by 2025, up from US$37 billion in 2020, due to a thriving consumer-centric digital health ecosystem and rising demand.

In other news, Foxconn announced last November that it is investing over US$700 million in its “3+3” initiative, which refers to three emerging industries: electric vehicles, robots, and digital health.

The company began with contract hardware manufacturing before moving on to hardware and software integration.

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