Will Apple Inc.’s Earpods with Health Monitoring be its Game Changer?
By Athena Yenko | May 2, 2014 1:52 PM EST
"Apple's new EarPods will have sensors in them, for heart rate & blood pressure. Also iBeacons so they don't get lost. They will require the lightning port, it's why the audio jack was moved to the bottom," an anonymous 'fired employee' of Apple Inc. posted via information sharing platform Secret.
As described by the poster, the rumoured Earpods "stores the data in a similar way to thumbprint point data, fully encrypted and nothing identifiable. But nice to send to your doctor to keep track of at which point your blood pressure started rising for example."
The poster said he wanted the information out because he hates "being manipulated."
"It would give me away. But I'm not the only person who got sent home for good last week."
If the new earpods come with these sensors, would this mean there will be no more listening to music/podcasts while the iPhone charges, another poster asked.
"Two of the pins are dedicated to audio in and out. So an adapter is possible. But I'm not aware of one being made. But it's possible."
He said that the earpods will be the gateway to the wearables, like the rumoured iWatch.
As an implication, the posts via Secret allude for the earpods to be Apple Inc.'s game changer.
"Buying music legally online wasn't popular until the iPod made it popular. Smartphones were dumb until the iPhone made them smart. Home medical devices are as you say a poor market today. But everybody has a body they would like to look after," the poster concluded.
While Secret had a reputation for both legit and hoax information being shared, Ben Wood, chief of research at the research company CCS Insight said that health monitoring sensors sounded something that Apple will likely do.
"We can't take any credibility from something posted on Secret. But - are these things Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) could do? If you had simply asked me what Apple could do, then putting sensors in is a rational next step," Wood told ValueWalk.
"You see so many people running with headphones in an a smartphone or music player attached. This is totally, utterly rational as a product direction for Apple. It's been widely investigated by other manufacturers, but as always with Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), they're great at taking an existing technology and improving the user experience."
In a detailed report from MacRumors, it pointed out that Apple Inc. filed one patent application in March 2007 where it intends to integrate sensors to its various devices for the devices to acquire physiological data automatically.
The report also noted that Apple Inc.'s second patent filing filed in August 2008 described specific gadget as headphone-based physiological monitoring.
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