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AMU+ non-invasive glucometer's Indiegogo campaign begins but caveat emptor for curious diabetics as further scrutiny reveals potential risks

Buyer beware when it comes to generic non-invasive blood glucose monitors. (Image source: Alibaba/Unsplash - edited)
Buyer beware when it comes to generic non-invasive blood glucose monitors. (Image source: Alibaba/Unsplash - edited)
A new Indiegogo campaign for the AMU PLUS non-invasive blood glucose monitor has started. The company behind this particular push, Vanguide, claims the AMU+ only takes one minute and one touch to offer up four test results, including glucose levels. However, diabetic buyers should beware, especially if they are hoping for a finger-stick replacement.

Such is the enthusiasm in the diabetes community for a medically accurate non-invasive blood glucose monitor that it has been predicted the market for such a device could be worth almost US$250 million by 2028. However, the overall blood glucose monitoring system market might be worth over US$31 billion by that time, so if anything, the estimate for the non-invasive monitor side looks quite conservative. With such big financial rewards on offer, many startups are racing to produce an approved painless solution to finger-stick testing, but while some seem promising on the surface, further research uncovers some disconcerting details.

Vanguide is one of these firms that apparently wants to serve the diabetes community by offering a non-invasive glucometer that is both affordable and accurate. The company is promoting its AMU PLUS (also known as AMU+) device and has just kicked-off a campaign on Indiegogo. The project goal is set at US$10,000, with early-bird backers getting the opportunity to buy the AMU+ non-invasive blood glucose monitor for US$499 (normally US$799). The marketing material and accompanying video clips show how promising the monitor looks, with easy usage, portability, and the ability to offer blood sugar level, SpO2, ECG, and heart-rate measurements. All a user has to do is place four fingers on the device and wait for a minute for measurements to be made.

However, some alarm bells start to ring when looking over the campaign post and Vanguide’s website. Both are littered with spelling mistakes (“a real Canaian startup” being especially egregious), and the AMU+ is not FDA cleared nor approved. But a lot of startups working on non-invasive blood sugar monitors haven’t acquired FDA approval and frequent typos on a site are not necessarily enough to warn people away from buying a product. With the Vanguide AMU+ though, it would be wise to engage a “caveat emptor” attitude, as it seems the device could arguably be handy as a sort of non-essential accompanying yardstick but certainly should not be considered as a replacement to more-accurate and safer traditional methods of checking blood glucose levels.

In fact, this same device turned up not too long ago as the Scanbo monitor, with a “prototype” reportedly using cutting-edge technologies to give non-invasive blood glucose measurements. It appears both of these devices, and presumably others, are actually sourced from Chinese companies like Shenzhen Jinhui Medical Technology Co., Ltd. In this case, the firm sells a “Viqee Noninvasive Blood Glucose Monitoring Device No Pricking SpO2” device for US$699 for a single piece. Over at Alibaba, it's possible to purchase a remarkably identical monitor for US$500 a unit, as long as you purchase 100 or more pieces. The Indiegogo campaign page at least adds this important note: “AMU+ is for self-health management and supplement accessory. It can't be relied on alone in the treatment.” Or in other words, it is an expensive gadget and not a potentially life-saving device.

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AMU+. (Image source: Vanguide)
AMU+ device
AMU+. (Image source: Vanguide)
AMU+ device
"Canaian startup". (Image source: Vanguide)
"Canaian startup"
Scanbo. (Image source: TechCrunch)
Scanbo monitor
Viqee. (Image source: MadeinChina)
Viqee monitor
MCS. (Image source: Alibaba)
MCS glucometer
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2022 06 > AMU+ non-invasive glucometer's Indiegogo campaign begins but caveat emptor for curious diabetics as further scrutiny reveals potential risks
Daniel R Deakin, 2022-06-10 (Update: 2022-06-10)