Please Note – The ResMed AirMini machine has since been released with some reviews already. Click here to view them.
ResMed AirMini Travel CPAP Machine Preview
ResMed; arguably the market leader in CPAP machines, has announced their entry into the travel CPAP machine market with the AirMINI.
There are a number of rumours circulating about the design of the machine. Now, it must be said that I cannot speak to the authenticity of the picture shown. But it looks strikingly similar to the descriptions of the machine from those who attended the launch. A few CPAP suppliers from the Sydney area were present, and some leaks (not mask leaks, excuse the pun) about the size, shape and features of the machine have slipped out of some not-so-tightly sealed lips.
It is a little secret that ResMed have been looking at entering into the lucrative travel-CPAP market for some time. In fact, when I visited ResMed HQ five years ago, part of their development team was busy pulling apart and analyzing the main players in this space. Namely, I recall parts from a Transcend machine splayed across one technicians desk.
What are the rumours?
First of all, it is going to be small. Very Small. Although the dimensions will need to be confirmed, the machine is rumoured to be about 33mm by 130mm by 200mm long. About the size of a digital camera. In CPAP terms: miniscule.
In addition, the machine is set to be released with a price tag of $2100 Australian. This is a similar price point to their bedside unit, the AirSense 10 AutoSet so I would expect the AirMini machines to have a similar price point to the AirSense AutoSets in the USA ($US800 to $US900).
The machine will be released with an in-line humidification system. I suspect that the in-line humidification will be a ‘ResMedsised’ (i.e. improved) version of something like this heat-moisture exchange unit.
The machine will be fully functional. By that, I mean that it will have all of the features that are associated with the AirSense range of machines, and will have AutoSet and AutoSet for her algorithms. It will store all of your vital compliance, usage and treatment efficacy data, and will hook up to the ResMed Software suite. In addition, one could assume that the AutoRamp feature which has proved such a success for ResMed will come standard, as well as the expiratory pressure relief (EPR) feature.
How is it different from other Travel CPAP Machines
First of all, it will be smaller than all of the other travel CPAP machines on the market. There are suggestions that only particular masks will be able to be used with the AirMini Travel CPAP Machine.
It is fully featured. Most other (not all) travel CPAP machines have made a trade-off between features and portability.
We are assuming that the AirMINI has an integrated battery. Although this information has not been released, this will be the most important design feature which will really sets it apart from the current machines on the market (except for the soon to be released Respironics DreamStation Go CPAP which will also have an integrated battery).
What are we concerned about?
The rumor that the AirMINI CPAP machine will only be compatible with specific masks is a little concerning. The photo attached to this post shows a special connection from the AirFit P10 mask to the tube. It would be unfortunate if ResMed takes a backward step from the standard mask connection sizes and uses a patented CPAP hose connection.
If this is the case, dick move ResMed! Dick move!
This would be a throwback to the old days of CPAP. Hopefully connections will be available so CPAP users can bring their favorite masks across to the AirMINI CPAP.
The heat-moisture exchange unit that is integrated into the hose will only last a couple of nights. I hope that ResMed have come up with a solution here so that these devices don’t have to be thrown out after a few nights usage. Seems a bit wasteful to me (being the greeny that I am).
It looks excellent. It is fully featured, and it looks compact.
ResMed is marketing this as a good second machine, and not necessarily a does-all travel and bedside unit. If the price indications are correct, the cost will be too great for a machine that will only be used some of the time, and it will likely turn people away.
Although it is fully featured, it is unlikely that the humidifier will work as well as a bedside units.
We feel that this machine is primarily useful in a niche market, tailored towards CPAP users wanting a second CPAP machine who are frequently on the road and can afford the premium price tag. For most others, they will stick with their bedside CPAP and either:
1. Go without CPAP whilst travelling
2. Purchase a cheaper travel CPAP machine
The ResMed AirMini has since been released and there are some reviews on it. TO check these out, click here.