glucose monitoring device for diabetics

the np1 is a medical device for diabetics who must regularly monitor their blood sugar levels. 

currently, taking a glucose reading involves penetration of the skin to draw a blood sample. the np1 is based around an innovative patch, applied to the skin that allows non-invasive readings for around 10-12 hours.

this project came top of the shortlist as part of a live brief set by a uk pharmaceuticals company. it is currently going through further development for manufacture.




the brief set out to find viable ways a wrist-mounted device could interact with the patch. how would the device operate and how could it be handled? a basic spec was supplied but the design approach, styling and features were free for exploration.

i did a lot of research into the disease and the existing products on the market used to manage it.

i experimented with cardboard models to find a good way for a wrist-based device to interact with the skin patch. the 2 parts are quite fiddly so it was important this action was easy to do and felt secure. a rough prototype with an off-center strap and buckle provided the best way of aligning the device with the patch contacts.



the design for the product came from building around components i pulled from the research and the brief. giving a realistic size and layout was a key aim for the project.  it was important to experiment with different internals to reach a slim but well proportioned device.



visually, the watch needed to be positioned somewhere between a sports watch and a medical device. one of the aims for the brief was to distance the style away from a ‘typical’ health monitor. the final design for the watch consists of a soft-touch polyurethane strap and a removable module. the strap and module can be separated for cleaning/customisation/upgrading.



the user interface was a challenge for the concept.

diabetes is a complex disease and differs from person to person. knowing this, it was critical that there was an easy way to read and understand information that gave a sense of scale and a level of importance.

a series of  different modes were drafted up that allowed basic tracking of a users glucose levels.


however the main focus on the project was the interaction you had with the device. the np1 can be attached to your wrist in a swift and solid action – no need to balance or rest the device on another part of the body to mess around with fiddly buckles or parts.

the strap includes a magnetic pin and latch for securing in place. this was an easy way of of viewing the patch contacts and sliding them into the device.


this project was completed in a couple of weeks in addition to final year university work. i found the brief very similar to the type of work i did at a technology consultancy in my placement year.