IoT Helps the Elderly Live a Safe and Worry-free Life While Respecting Their Privacy

How Can the Elderly Live a Worry-free Life?

The population of elderly people in Japan is steadily increasing. They accounted for 27.3% of the entire population in 2016, at 34.61 million people, breaking historic records in both number and percentage*. Redefining the age of being qualified as an elderly from 65 to 75 is now under consideration. This way, individuals aged 65 to 74 years old can be included in the working population as the "pre-elderly".

With the increase of the elderly population, their living alone has become a social issue. According to a Cabinet Office survey, the percentage of individuals older than 64 years old living alone is rapidly increasing. While 4.3% of males and 11.2% of females lived alone in 1980, the figures increased to 11.1% for males and 20.3% for females in 2010**. By 2025, the baby boomers will be 75 years old or older. By 2030, it is predicted that one-third of the national population will be at least 65 years old.

In this aging society, what is required for the elderly to live a worry-free life? Fujitsu has started to offer an IoT-based, 24/7 resident monitoring solution for the elderly***.

*: 2016 survey by the Statistics Bureau, Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications
**: 2015 White Paper on the Aging Society
***: FUJITSU IoT Solution UBIQUITOUSWARE Resident Monitoring Solution

Sensors Detect the Presence/absence of Sounds and Movements of Daily Activity, As Well As Abnormalities in Them

The Resident Monitoring Solution assesses the state of the resident by first collecting sound, movement, room temperature, and room humidity data sensed by a Remote Care Base**** placed in the residence. This collected data is then analyzed using the sensor algorithm***** and the state of the resident is known. Instead of taking photos or recording actual conversations, this solution detects conversations as speech events. Since it analyzes only information necessary for its purpose, it can monitor residents while respecting their privacy.

Resident Monitoring Solution usage example (left) and the Remote Care Base (right)

The Remote Care Base sends an alert to a call center where nurses are on standby 24/7****** if it does not detect daily activity from the resident for 24 hours, or if it detects a loud noise. This allows for a prompt safety check. The device also records frequent coughing, the frequency and volume of snoring, and irregular breathing. Specialized call center representatives use these records to provide health consultation. With these features, this solution can offer personalized support for healthy living.

How Resident Monitoring Solution works

The Remote Care Base requires only a power source and a network connection. No wiring is needed, and the device can easily be installed both in new and old houses.

****: FUJITSU IoT Solution UBIQUITOUSWARE Remote Care Base. One of the UBIQUITOUSWARE products that primarily focus on sound to monitor safety of the elderly.
*****: FUJITSU IoT Solution UBIQUITOUSWARE Sensor Algorithm. One of the UBIQUITOUSWARE products that analyze data collected from sensors using Fujitsu's unique algorithm, converts analysis results into the data format requested by customers, and delivers it to them.
******: Operated by Fujitsu Social Life Systems Limited

Creating an Environment that Provides a Safe, Worry-free and Healthy Life for the Elderly

The number of elderly who live alone is increasing. Under these circumstances, having quick access to emergency support, while still respecting their privacy, makes for a more desirable life. The Resident Monitoring Solution achieves constant monitoring and protection of privacy at the same time to provide the elderly a safe and worry-free life.

In addition to the service introduced here, Fujitsu offers a rich lineup of other IoT services. With its IoT technology, Fujitsu will continue to support the creation of an environment that allows individuals to enjoy a safe, worry-free and healthy life.