Dezeen Magazine

Withings Beamo multiscope

Withings' "thermometer of the future" measures more than just temperature

Health tech company Withings has used the Consumer Electronics Show to unveil its BeamO "multiscope" – a device that allows people to conduct four routine medical checks at home, designed together with Elium Studio.

The small and portable device combines a contactless thermometer for measuring body temperature, an electrocardiogram (ECG) for heart rate, an oximeter for blood oxygen levels and a digital stethoscope for listening to heart and lung sounds.

Withings calls BeamO "the world's first multiscope" and says it is designed to allow people to conduct at-home check-ups or enhance their telehealth appointments with the sort of tests that a doctor would typically conduct in their office.

Photo of hands holding the Withings BeamO device horizontally between them like a game controller
BeamO measures heart rate and blood oxygen levels when users grip the device

"BeamO will revolutionise the measurement of the core vitals carried out during medical visits from the comfort of one's own home," said Withings founder and president Eric Carreel. "This crucial data will provide a vital overview of overall health or warning signs of potential areas of concern."

"BeamO will be the thermometer of the future, providing the ability to assess temperature and observe the state of the heart and lungs," he continued.

The design and technology of BeamO is an evolution of Withings' Thermo, a no-contact infrared thermometer that came out in 2016.

Digital collage based on a photo of a peron holding the Withings BeamO to their chest to use as a digital stethoscope, with a small digital illustration in light blue suggesting a scan of the chest
The device can be used as a stethoscope to listen to the heart and lungs

BeamO carries on the rounded edges that feature in the original design but this time within a package that looks more like a compact remote control. As with all of Withings' products, it was designed together with fellow French company Elium Studio.

BeamO uses various sensors to carry out its multiple purposes, most of which work by sending out light waves and detecting how they bounce off the body.

Photoplethysmography – the technology in pulse oximeters – and electrodes along the sides of the device measure blood oxygen levels and heart rate while the user holds it in their grip.

Digital collage based on a photo of a woman measuring a child's temperature by holding the Withings BeamO device near their forehead, with a small digital illustration of veins in the child's head glowing red on one side indicating a hot area
BeamO also contains a contactless thermometer

Piezoelectric discs that convert pressure changes into electrical signals power the digital stethoscope, capturing sound waves through the back or chest. Users can listen to the audio through headphones or record and send it to their doctor via the Withings app. The app can also be used for health tracking.

Withings says there have also been improvements to the infrared thermometer since the launch of Thermo, with the latest sensor now producing a narrower focal area that gives more accurate measurements.

The company says some of the conditions and irregularities that BeamO could potentially detect include arrhythmias, abnormal heart rates, heart murmurs, lung wheezing and low blood oxygen, as well as possible fever and infection.

The vitals it measures overlap with what people are advised to monitor with Covid-19 and other respiratory infections.

"Post-pandemic, telemedicine is commonplace," said Careel. "While convenient and cost-effective, remote visits lacked the ability for health professionals to carry out the routine checks they perform in person."

"BeamO will make this possible remotely with a device that combines the functionality of four different pieces of medical equipment."

Photo of a professional-looking man looking at a computer where there is a video chat with someone using a medical measuring device on one side of the screen and a chest diagram with an audio wave file on the other
Data and recordings can be shared with the user's doctor

BeamO is expected to launch in Europe and Australia in summer 2024 and in the USA once it has clearance from the Food and Drug Administration.

The device was on display at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the world's biggest tech trade show, held at the start of each year in Las Vegas. Other highlights from this year's event include LG's transparent OLED television and AI-powered robot assistant.

CES 2024 takes place at various locations in Las Vegas from 9 to 12 January 2024. See Dezeen Events Guide for an up-to-date list of architecture and design events taking place around the world.