BOTHELL, WA - June 30, 2006 - SonoSite, Inc. (Nasdaq:SONO), the world leader in hand-carried ultrasound, announced today that its MicroMaxx ultrasound system is a recipient of the 2006 Industrial Design Excellence Awards (IDEA). The SonoSite MicroMaxx system is one of 106 award winners out of 1,494 applicants.
Sponsored by BusinessWeek and the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA), the IDEA awards are judged by a jury of 18 leading individuals in the design world. When reviewing applications and viewing product samples in a face-to-face evaluation, jurors focus on design innovation, benefit to the user, benefit to the client/business, ecological responsibility, aesthetics and appeal.
"This year's winners shared a few things in common," remarked juror Robyn Waters, founder and president, RW Trend LLC. "The best of the best found a way to cut through the clutter and simplify product and message. The winning designers were able to tune into the hearts and the minds of the customer, not just into market trends, and deliver smart products that reframed entire categories."
This is SonoSite's third IDEA award. In 2000, the SonoSite 180, the ultrasound industry's first hand-carried system weighing under ten pounds, won an IDEA award and in 2003 the iLook system also won an award.
"As the world leader in hand-carried ultrasound, SonoSite has built its corporate reputation on providing point of care solutions for physicians and their patients," said Kevin M. Goodwin, SonoSite President and CEO. "To achieve this goal, we design hand-carried ultrasound systems that fuse form with function. On behalf of the entire SonoSite team, I want to thank IDSA for recognizing the MicroMaxx system as an important example of design and healthcare innovation."
The company's newest product, the MicroMaxx system, which incorporates SonoSite's third generation of hand-carried ultrasound technology, began shipping in June 2005 and represents a revolutionary crossover point between hand-carried and cart-based systems. Weighing less than eight pounds and with the size and appearance of a notebook computer, the MicroMaxx system delivers high-resolution image quality at a fraction of the cost of larger, heavier cart-based systems. A five-year warranty on the system and most of its transducers comes standard, dramatically lowering ownership costs in an industry that typically charges 7-10% of a product's purchase price in annual service contracts.
The BusinessWeek IDEA report is available on newsstands today and the IDSA quarterly magazine, Innovation, will publish further information on the winners in its annual yearbook this fall. All winners with descriptions, photos and contacts are featured on IDSA's website www.idsa.org.
SonoSite, Inc. (www.sonosite.com) is the innovator and world leader in hand-carried ultrasound, with an installed base of more than 25,000 systems. The company, headquartered near Seattle, is represented by eight subsidiaries and a global distribution network in over 75 countries. SonoSite's small, lightweight systems are expanding the use of ultrasound across the clinical spectrum by cost-effectively bringing high performance ultrasound to the point of patient care. The company employs approximately 500 people worldwide.
About IDEA, Industrial Designers and IDS
The IDEA program fosters business and public understanding about the impact of industrial design excellence on the quality of life and the economy.
Industrial designers determine the form, use features and interaction qualities of manufactured products, packaging and digital media systems. They study people at work, at home and in motion to create satisfying experiences with products from the kitchen and the office to the hospital and the warehouse, shaping these to fit their customers and to make effective use of industrial processes. In this way, industrial designers have a quiet but profound presence in almost everything people encounter during the day.
IDSA is the voice of industrial design, committed to advancing the profession through education, information, community and advocacy.