How Firmware Customization Makes Telehealth Solutions Safer, Better, and More Affordable
As the demand for telehealth solutions surges, more and more solution providers are finding that delivering a top-class product has its own unique challenges. JACS Solutions has been working with healthcare providers for years. Through our experience, we have seen that most service providers prioritize the following three things in their product offerings:
- Protection of patients’ data and privacy, driven by regulations such as HIPAA compliance
- A seamless and controlled brand experience
- A solution that is affordable and easy to maintain
How do you achieve these without investing in extensive resources? At JACS Solutions, we customize the Android device firmware at the operating system level and provide our customers with a safer, better, and more affordable product.
Firmware customization involves the removal of bloatware and other unwanted apps from the device. We modify the system settings to provide better security from the application layer to the Android kernel level. By doing so, we can disable backdoor access to system files, user files, root access, and command-line access. In cases where the telehealth application is not reliant on the Google GMS, we will uninstall GMS, thus further eliminating security risks. For HIPAA compliance, data encryption is a crucial requirement, and firmware customization allows us to encrypt the entire device’s data storage. Data encryption coupled with application encryption from the service providers works hand-in-hand to achieve the ultimate security for patient data and privacy.
Communication is another critical element that benefits from firmware customization. When APNs are locked down, it can help prevent system attacks such as man-in-the-middle attacks. For businesses that want to utilize VPN for remote access to internal networks, customization of the VPN access on the device can make the connection much more secure.
Optimal User Experience:
Nothing is more important to the success of a telehealth solution than delivering the optimal user experience. The user experience equates to the brand experience that makes each product offering stand out among its competitors.
Firmware customization can help brands achieve just that with a highly controlled user experience. We can custom build the boot screen, the brand logo, the wallpaper, and any buttons that need to be displayed. We can also create a custom OS launcher that can lock the device into “kiosk mode” to prevent unauthorized access. The application will auto-start without allowing the user to access any other interfaces.
JACS Solutions is no stranger to helping providers meet their user experience needs with firmware customization. When our customer, Clear Arch Health, approached us wishing to integrate a JACS’ tablet into their existing enclosure, they were concerned that charging with the chassis would emit electric magnetic waves that would interfere with their medical peripherals. We addressed this challenge by customizing the power management feature via changes to the firmware API, thus allowing them to disable the device’s charging capability as demanded by user scenarios.
Click here to learn more and read the full Clear Arch Health case study.
With the growing demand for remote patient monitoring and chronic disease management, more people need effective telehealth solutions that they can afford. To keep costs down, providers need to be concerned with every aspect of their product life cycle, from development to maintenance. Can firmware customization help with this? Absolutely.
A telehealth device with a custom-built firmware offers everything providers want, with control of even the smallest details. The custom firmware is uploaded onto each device before it’s shipped, eliminating the need for providers to manually configure each device, and making them ready to be used right out of the box. Such configuration-free deployment yields significant cost savings on engineering and support staff resources for the duration of the product’s life cycle.
Furthermore, a telehealth device that has a custom-built firmware has a much longer life cycle than consumer-grade devices. At JACS Solutions, our products last on average 3-5 years. That’s an additional source of cost savings for solution providers who can then pass those savings onto their customers, and keep themselves competitive.