Apple Watch on a mission to save lives: Apple announces three new studies to transform personal health care

Apple Watch on a mission to save lives: Apple announces three new studies to transform personal health care
The Apple Watch went from being an experimental wearable that vibrates when someone calls you to a pretty well-rounded activity tracker, to an autonomous device that people can call you on, to an actual personal health-carer.

With Apple Watch Series 4, Apple introduced features such as fall-detection, afib (atrial fibrillation) checks, and even an ECG scanner (which took a while to become available as this sort of tech needs to be cleared by the FDA). Couple that with the ability to call 911 or an emergency contact by simply pressing the digital crown and you already have a bunch of grateful Apple customers, who were “saved” by their Apple Watch — something that looked like an expensive gizmo at first, but turned out to be a useful accessory to keep on at all times.



At least that’s the impression we got from a number of clips that Apple played for us on its ongoing keynote event. The videos were of various grateful users who praised the Apple Watch for one reason or another — one person fell and the Watch immediately called a close one to check up on them; one person had an irregular heart rhythm and the Watch warned them that they should see the doc; other people were impressed with how successful the Health Rings are at pushing them to improve their fitness every day.

And Apple says it’s not done. After the success of the Apple Heart Study program last year, Cupertino is ready to go at it again — this time with three separate studies! One is the Apple Hearing Study — using the microphones within the Apple Watch, the app will measure the loudness levels and let you know if you are exposing yourself to too many decibels for too much time. Apple kind of glossed over that one and we are curious about the “study” part here. Next, there’s the Women’s Health Study, which will act as an extension of the already-available period-tracker on the Apple Watch, using the collected data to look at the “bigger picture” and expand the potential capabilities of the app. And then, there’s the Heart and Movement study, which will use fitness data to further enhance Apple’s understanding on how to help users track their health.



You will be able to opt into these studies by downloading the Apple Research app later this year and consenting to the data sharing.

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7 Comments

1. surethom

Posts: 1689; Member since: Mar 04, 2009

Apple watch does great health way better that others. I so hope WearOS smartwatchs next year launch with fall detection, sound detection, ECG & sleep tracking.

2. TBomb

Posts: 1470; Member since: Dec 28, 2012

I think it's great that they are using people's health to get sales. However, give me the watch features with the choice of a non-iphone deviceand i'd consider it. But you can't save too many people in the world f you require them to also have an iphone. if they truly cared about my health they would allow me to get a watch for the health reasons without shelling out for an extra device to use them.

4. Vancetastic

Posts: 1274; Member since: May 17, 2017

I can't agree enough with this.

5. Papa_Ji

Posts: 848; Member since: Jun 27, 2016

Apple is best at brain washing.... They only want money...Nothing to do with health. They are using these words just to increase the sale of garbage phone.

6. FLOGROWN

Posts: 54; Member since: Oct 25, 2018

Apple can sell their devices to whoever they want to, is business, if you beed an ECG buy one after market or tell Androids to make phones with one integrated

7. TBomb

Posts: 1470; Member since: Dec 28, 2012

I realize that they are allowed to conduct their business as they wish. However, if I had the only product that could do X, and I was the size of Apple, I feel it is against my ethics to say "Look at my product. I make claims it will save your life. I truly care about my customers' health. I care about pushing this technology to everyone to make life better for everyone. Oh, but to use it, you ALSO have to buy a different product of mine. I care about you and your health." Either you want to help people or you want to get their money. You can do both, but in my eyes, greed sits more sour than charity sits sweet.

3. Back_from_beyond

Posts: 1418; Member since: Sep 04, 2015

So have they actually made it more reliable and accurate? For a device known to have a 9 out of 10 false positive rate when it comes to AFib detection, I wouldn't put much faith in any testing from these devices.

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