Managing Type 2 diabetes gets easier thanks to UnitedHealthcare and Dexcom

A few weeks after investing in a blood sugar tracking startup, Fitbit is doubling down on its commitment to helping those with diabetes. At CES 2018, health insurance provider UnitedHealthcare and continuous glucose monitoring company Dexcom announced a new pilot program centered around wearable tech provided by Fitbit to help those with Type 2 diabetes better address their health in real time.

Under the new pilot, eligible UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage plan participants will be able to leverage both a Fitbit (either an Ionic or Charge 2 device) as well as the Dexcom Mobile Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) System to keep tabs on their glucose levels throughout the day, helping them better match actions with outcomes. The CGM system is comprised of a sensor, generally worn on the abdomen, that detects glucose levels immediately beneath the skin. A companion transmitter sends this information to a smartphone, which interprets and displays the data every five minutes.

This constant monitoring might be able to help patients determine what behaviors positively or negatively affect their glucose levels, and take action accordingly. And thanks to the personalized coaching and activity monitoring provided by the Fitbit device, users should be able to turn insights into action.

As the medical industry turns increasingly to wearable devices and new technology, UnitedHealthcare is looking to stay on trend. As such, the company says its new focus is on “integrating human support with data from real-time sources, such as digital health technology, and historical sources, like claims data, to help improve and personalize how people navigate the health care system.” The pilot with DexCom and Fitbit seeks to empower patients to manage their own glucose levels, thereby reducing the amount of medication they require and improving their own confidence in going about their everyday lives.

This isn’t the first time that Fitbit has worked alongside DexCom or UnitedHealthcare. Last fall, the two companies collaborated to bring DexCom CGM data to the Fitbit Ionic, and last January, Fitbit’s Charge 2 became the first buy-up device option added to the UHC Motion program, an employer-sponsored wearable device program that encourages individuals to walk more frequently. Since the beginning of that program, participants have collectively walked more than 130 billion steps.

Update: Added information about Fitbit giveaway with UnitedHealthcare’s pilot program.

Product Review

Fitbit’s trimmed-down Versa Lite still has all the smartwatch features you need

Fitbit trimmed some of the features it bundles in its popular Versa smartwatch to keep the price low on it newest smartwatch, the Versa Lite. Does this strategy work? Read our review to find out.
Deals

Make some time for the best smartwatch deals for March 2019

Smartwatches make your life easier by sending alerts right on your wrist. Many also provide fitness-tracking features. So if you're ready to take the plunge into wearables and want to save money, read on for the best smartwatch deals.
Computing

The U.S. government plans to drop $500M on a ridiculously powerful supercomputer

The U.S. Department of Energy has announced plans to build a $500 million exascale supercomputer by 2021. The project, known as the Aurora supercomputer, is expected to boost research efforts in fields such as public health.
Deals

Stay fit and save cash with our top 10 affordable Fitbit alternatives

As much as we love Fitbits, they're rather expensive. If all you want is a simple activity tracker, however, then check out these great cheap Fitbit alternatives. With offerings from brands like Garmin, you don't need to pay full price.
Mobile

The Samsung Galaxy S10 5G might be a few short weeks away from launch

Samsung has announced a whopping four new Galaxy S10 devices, from the low-cost S10e to the triple-camera S10 and S10 Plus. But it's the Galaxy S10 5G that steals the show as it's among the first 5G-ready smartphones to hit the market.
Computing

T-Mobile goes after big cable companies, pilots wireless home internet service

In a shot at big cable companies, T-Mobile is launching a new pilot program to bring an unlimited wireless LTE home internet service to up to 50,000 homes across the United States by the end of 2019.
Mobile

Apple patent suggests Apple Watch bands could have built-in fitness indicators

Apple may be exploring ways to make Apple Watch bands a little more useful. A new patent has been filed by Apple that suggests Apple Watch bands could eventually have indicators for things like fitness goals.
Mobile

Type away on the best iPad keyboard cases, from the Mini to the Pro

Whether you're looking to replace your laptop with a tablet or merely want to increase your typing speed, a physical iPad keyboard is the perfect companion to the iPad. Check out our top picks for every available iPad model.
Mobile

Apple patents hint at improved Apple Store and unboxing experiences

It looks like Apple is working on ways to improve the Apple Store and product unboxing experiences. The company has been awarded a few patents, largely for tech that can be used in product packaging to ensure products stay charged.
Wearables

Fossil made a smartwatch in 2004, and it’s part of a new brand retrospective

Fossil has been making watches for 35 years, and to celebrate the anniversary, it has a new retrospective exhibit complete with the first smartwatch it made — the Wrist Net watch from 2004.
Wearables

Fossil is working on a smartwatch with BMW, and it’s coming next year

Fossil, the watch company that makes smartwatches under its own name and partners with other major brands too, intends to launch a smartwatch with car manufacturer BMW in the future.
Social Media

A Facebook, Instagram bug exposed millions of passwords to its employees

Facebook, Facebook Lite, and Instagram passwords weren't properly encrypted and could be viewed by employees, the company said Thursday. The network estimates millions of users were affected.
Mobile

Nokia phones are being investigated for allegedly sending data to China

Nokia could be in some hot water. According to recent reports, Nokia 7 models may be secretly sending data to China without the user knowing about it. Nokia says that the issue was a software bug and that it has been fixed.
Mobile

Diesel’s denim-inspired smartwatch straps are a casual, colorful must-own

Diesel will release two new versions of the On Full Guard 2.5 smartwatch later this year, with seriously cool, denim-inspired straps in classic Diesel colors. We tried them on at the Baselworld 2019 show.