Stay in touch with loved ones who are in the hospital thanks to e-health. That’s what the smart cushion Viktor, developed by Fingertips, does. Viktor lets patients communicate with their loved ones by video, listen to music, watch films, and more.
The smart cushion also has an aid button that makes it possible to call hospital staff in case of a problem. Numerous other user-friendly, enjoyable features, like brain-training games and virtual photo albums, help the elderly – especially those in assisted living – feel less isolated.
Golden medal of the Lépine Competition
Having observed that tablets and smartphones are often complicated to use is what inspired Alain Tixier to come up with this smart accessory. “It had to be something warm and welcoming that wouldn’t be at all scary or off-putting,” he emphasizes. Watching his mother, a pianist, miming running her fingers over a keyboard gave him the idea for this innovation. So he adapted a technology he had been working on for the French utilities company EDF: sensors for the display windows in their boutiques.
After more than two years of research and working with engineers, in 2017, he raised €1.2 million via Side Capital, an investment and consulting firm for tech and digital start-ups. Since then, the Viktor cushion has won 18 medals, including two gold ones at the Lépine Competition for inventors, one from the French Sports and Medicine Society, and a bronze medal from the City of Paris. Thanks to a partnership with Orange, the cushion is now available in the telephone operator’s 1,200 points of sale in France.