Are You Ready to Trust an iPhone App for Skin Cancer Diagnosis?

By Molly Oswaks on at

The cameras on our smartphones have come a lonnnnnng way. In fact, many people rely on their iPhones as the primary device for non-professional photography. But are these cameras yet good enough, clear and colour-accurate enough, to trust when the results could literally be a matter of life or death?

The University of Michigan has released a free iPhone app, UMSkinCheck, "intended for skin cancer self exam and surveillance." 23 different, strategic self-shots — in the nude! — comprise the full-body photographic library that is stored in the app. It also allows you to "track detected moles/lesions, access informational videos and literature, and fill out a melanoma risk calculator."

Obviously, this app doesn't intend to replace the need for a professional medical exam. And it's certainly a great concept. But is smartphone technology — cameras, to be precise — there yet? [The Atlantic]