Fujitsu made a wearable for cows

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Fujitsu has developed a wearable for cows that is designed to help farmers closely detect estrus (heat) in its female cattle to improve the ability to induce pregnancy.

The Estrus Detection System for Cattle or ESDC for short, uses an orange tracking sensor that's essentially just a pedometer. It fits around the cow's ankle and looks a bit like a big electronic ASBO tag.

With a receiver set up inside a barn nearby, hourly movement data is analysed by Fujitsu's data centres in the cloud and then sent to the farmer on a tablet, smartphone or PC.

Essential reading: The best wearables of MWC 2016

This means farmers can precisely detect estrus, the appropriate time for artificial insemination. It's a very short window time during the fertility period, roughly around 16 hours, and it's tough for a farmer to keep an eye on every cow's movements.

The hope is that this can improve conception rates and reduce the expense of calving cycles. It can also detect diseases at an earlier stage.

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The cow wearable has been in development since 2013 and is already being put to good use in Japan and Korea where farmers have seen a noticeable improvement in pregnancy rates. A mammoth 3 year battery life means farmers won't have to get the wellies on and head into the field to change the batteries too often either.

Fujitsu is also trialling the wearable tech in Europe with research tests being carried out in Turkey and Romania. If you're wondering whether you'll ever see this wearable appearing on the ankles of other animals, that's not going to happen.

Some tests were carried out on other animals but it just didn't work. So for now, this is just for the cows.

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Michael Sawh

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Michael Sawh has been covering the wearable tech industry since the very first Fitbit landed back in 2011.

Previously the resident wearable tech expert at Trusted Reviews, he also marshaled the features section of T3.com.

He also regularly contributed to T3 magazine when they needed someone to talk about fitness trackers, running watches, headphones, tablets, and phones.

Michael writes for GQ, Wired, Coach Mag, Metro, MSN, BBC Focus, Stuff, TechRadar and has made several appearances on the BBC Travel Show to talk all things tech. 

Michael is a lover of all things sports and fitness-tech related, clocking up over 15 marathons and has put in serious hours in the pool all in the name of testing every fitness wearable going. Expect to see him with a minimum of two wearables at any given time.


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