Posts Tagged ‘consumer empowerment’

Google’s Blind Date with Consumer Health

July 6th, 2011
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Even great athletes – like Rafael Nadal at this year’s Wimbledon Championships – suffer setbacks and losses at times. Thus, we shouldn’t be too hard on Google for the recent downfall of Google Health, although we may analyze it and look for lessons learned just as Rafael surely does after a losing match.
The Google Health downfall carries with it a long chain of assumptions: everything ranging from design clumsiness to the search engine giant’s inability to bring the medical community into its fold. MIT’s own Technology Review chalked up the failure to the nation’s broken medical system and a recent article in Mobihealthnews (“10 Reasons Why Google Failed”) outlined it so clearly that you could use it for study in a Business 101 class.
Putting all other missteps aside, I believe many companies veer off track in the earliest phases of product planning. Large corporations, by virtue of pure muscle, sometimes are further burdened when they think they can create a need where one simply doesn’t exist. In this case, Google miscalculated whose problem it was they were actually trying to address.
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Investors May Back a Revolution, but It Takes the People to Start One

May 19th, 2011
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A recent article posted by Luke Timmerman of paints a bleak picture for the state of biotech investment. He explains that the general public no longer views biotech as worthy of the almighty buzz factor, i.e., the magazine cover stories and TV morning shows so important to the elusive independent investor. He suggests that the biotechnology industry may never capture the public’s imagination again, a strong assertion considering the amazing things happening in genomic research, companion diagnostics, medical technology, telemedicine and other parts of the sector. But is the buzz factor the only thing that matters in an age of consumer empowerment? What about the equally powerful phenomenon of simply going viral?
In some ways Mr. Timmerman’s article, in which he speaks of investor excitement for TECHnology versus BIOTECHnology, may not present a fair comparison. Facebook and LinkedIn do not have an entity like the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) that sends years of data to the trashcan more frequently than it approves a product for use. Nor do many technologies reckon with the complex reimbursement issues faced by products utilized within the healthcare system.
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