Traditional mercury filled thermometers are a thing of the past now that the rise of the smart thermometer is here. I previously reviewed the Wishbone Smart Thermometer, which is non-contact and scans/reads the temperature. But now there is another smart thermometer on the market, from Kinsa.
Kinsa, an Indiegogo funded project has produced the first ever FDA cleared thermometer for mobile devices. It was designed with parents and children in mind, using smartphones or tablets to make temperature reading more engaging and informative. If you are a parent, you will understand how tough it can be sometimes to take your child’s temperature. In brief, it connects to a mobile device, via the headphone jack and uses the display, power and processing of the device to determine a precise temperature reading.
First off, there is a high quality, premium feel to the product and its packaging, which always reassures me when I open products for the first time. Within the cardboard packaging, a clear plastic case houses the thermometer and secures/protects it when not in use. As well as the thermometer you will find an adapter, used on the initial set up and an extension lead for easier placement and instructions. The thermometer is flexible, useful for reaching examination areas. The extension lead helps even more if required. Like traditional thermometers, the Kinsa Smart Thermometer can be used orally, under the arm, or rectally.
To start using the thermometer, you must first install the official Kinsa app, which is free and available on both iOS and Android. I installed it on my iPhone and was greeted with tutorial videos, guiding me through the installation process. Very useful, user-friendly and overall, very quick. To set the thermometer up for the first time, you first need to connect the included black adapter into the headphone socket of your device, followed by the thermometer. It then tells you to remove and reinsert the thermometer without the black adapter. It does a few things, like installing different drivers on your device and it’s done. Very simple installation which did not require me to look at the instructions.
Using the thermometer is very easy. Plug the thermometer in, open the app and hit ‘Take Temperature’. You are given three reading type options, Oral, under arm and rectal. Once selected, you are then greeted by a loading bar at the top of the screen and bubbles rising at the bottom of your screen. Yes, you can pop the bubbles to pass the wait time. As a parent you can watch the loading bar and tell your child how much longer to stay still. When used on myself, the reading time was very quick, around the 10 seconds advertised by Kinsa but when using with my daughter, it took slightly longer as she kept moving the tip of the thermometer around in her mouth. In both instances, I got accurate results, just one took longer than the other. Tested multiple times, with only a fraction (0.1) degree fluctuation in results. With these results, you can create profiles, add notes and save them onto your device for future reference or monitoring. The extension lead works as it should and doesn’t affect the results, very useful if you have a big device such as a tablet.
Overall, a very good thermometer, accompanied by a user-friendly and modern app. It costs £24.99 and is available online and in store at Mothercare. For further info, visit the official Kinsa website.