Heartlink - An Integrated Product Service System

Joint Master Project, TU Delft x Philips Design

I was highly involved in a seven-month project commissioned by Philips Design. The project belongs to Philips "Hospital to Home" Department. The focus is providing confidence and helping hand to CVD patient in their daily life after leaving hospital. Full process covers company analysis, market research, user research, vision definition, conceptualization, qualitative user test and prototype finalization. The final design is a product service system that integrates device, application and service around them. It’s an unobtrusive portable solution that offers on-demand medical degree monitoring, consulting and peer empowerment.

Mentor: Jacco Eerden (Philips Design), Kees Nauta (TU Delft)

Commissioned by: Philips Design, Eindhoven

Personal Contribution: User research; Information visualization; Customer Journey mapping; Concept development; User interface; Interactive prototyping with Axure; Design evaluation; Motion graphics; Final concept video editting

Team: Michiel Kersteman, Homero Buendía, Wei Wei Chang, Hitomi Kitajima, Sergio Arciniega

07/2014 - 01/2015


HeartLink, is an integrated product service system that consist of three elements, a measuring device, a community of similar patients, and a platform to involve professionals and informal caregivers. Our team intend to achieve the goal of providing confidence to CHD patients and improve life/treatment balance through the three design pillars, as established in ‘Proposition user group’. Heartlink device is a portable measuring device which provides on-demand medical degree monitoring of vitals, in order to ‘show people their personal moving space (boundaries)’. The measured results will be send to the HeartLink Application.

The HeartLink Application, aside from showing details from the measurement, will provide a community forum where patients with similar conditions can connect and share questions, experiences or emotions. A HeartLink service system is the overarching force behind the device and application. Through the HeartLink Application professionals and health coaches can provide useful and personal advice to CHD patients, based on their measured data. Caregivers or close ones are involved in the feedback loop to the patient. Eventually, a smart cloud system collects all the user data and will optimize its personal boundary system.

View the entire project report here, with appendix here.


Based on your blood pressure in resting state and your stress test, your personal boundaries for heart rate (HR) and blood pressure BP are set. HeartLink is small and portable, and can take a measurement by holding it for 8 seconds against the wrist. It informs the user whether or not their HR and BP are within their personal boundaries. By informing boundaries, users feel more secure and self-controllable.




A small group of patients will be grouped up through the smart phone application according to patients’ similar lifestyles and disease profiles. In order to facilitate the communication to the largest extent, patients need to set up detailed lifestyle interests, daily activities, sports interests, food preferences, etc. This function can be an alternative way of communication to what elderly patients have in rehabilitation center in the current situation.

_Proper involvement of caregivers/professionals

The status of the patient while using HeartLink system will be updated to their personal doctor periodically. The doctor will get immediately informed if the patient is in an emergency situation. A health coach is assigned to each group and is in charge of the whole group’s conditions and discussions. Informal caregivers like family and friends are authorized to be aware of the body condition of the patient through invitations from the patient. Apart from that, they will also get noticed while something is considered relatively need to be taken care.

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Information architecture of the app flow

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Examples of visual comps and demo of the Heartlink applicaiton

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Unobtrusive and usable physical product

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The scenario of use of HeartLink device can be divided into four steps: turning device on by placing the fingers on each side (1), performing the measurement by placing the device on the wrist, (2), receiving the measured result through light feedback (3) and a reminder/counter for subsequent measurements (4). Multiple readings have to be done because a single BP & HR measurement in itself doesn’t say much.

In step 3 the result feedback can either tell the readings are within your personal boundary or they have exceeded your boundary. When the product detects slight abnormality or exceeded value from the user’s HR or BP, the light paths blinks and vibrates twice. Only then step 4 will initiate: guiding and reminding the user to do a second measurement after 10 minutes by showing a blinking bar on the side. If the second measurement was also outside the boundary, a 3th one will follow. This process repeats until N-times.

Process photos of foundational research and user tests