New in iOS 8 you are able to create a Medical ID in the Health App. Even though the rest of the Health app is down, the Medical ID is fully functioning. The Medical ID is important because in case of an emergency, medical responders can look at your phone and know any allergies or medical conditions you have and know who to contact for you without unlocking your phone. To continue to make a Medical ID, press the word Create Medical ID in red.
The New York Times is weighing in on Apple’s imminent iPhone event, corroborating past information as well as adding some new tidbits about Apple’s newest iPhones (the ‘iPhone 6′) and its brand new wearable (dubbed ‘iWatch’).
Most interestingly, it says that the iWatch will feature a flexible display. Assumedly, this will allow the product to morph to fit comfortably on user’s arms. KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo predicted Apple’s use of a flexible panel in July. The screen is protected by sapphire glass. As 9to5Mac has reported countless times, the device will feature health and fitness tracking capabilities, for things like footsteps and heart rate. The report claims Apple has “put an enormous amount of time and money” to make the sensors track “much more accurately than existing fitness devices”.
In terms of software, the device will rely on HealthKit for health tracking and Handoff, one of Apple’s iOS 8 continuity features, to seamlessly share content between devices. Handoff could be used for sharing SMS texts between the phone and the watch, for instance. 9to5Mac discussed how Handoff might interact with Apple’s wearable a couple of months ago.
A new report from KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo sheds some interesting light on the iWatch specifications. Kuo believes the iWatch will feature 8 GB of internal storage, with 512 MB of RAM. Naturally, these stats are lower than current iOS devices (which have upwards of 16 GB of storage and 1 GB of RAM), but still seems high for a wearable smartwatch. This may suggest the device can act more independently from an iPhone than most assume. 8 GB of storage space is quite a lot and could be used for things like caching maps, or perhaps enable offline voice recognition.
KGI also believes the iWatch will come in two sizes, with a 1.3 inch and a 1.5 inch screen. This reflects longstanding rumours that Apple is targeting two sizes, to make it appeal to both gender’s fashion preferences. Kuo seems less sure on what materials will make up the product, but ‘guesses’ aluminium based on Apple’s tendencies to use the metal across its products. There is also mention of a gold color option, which would match with the iPhone 5s and iPhone 6’s gold varieties.
The move is not unexpected, as it would be very much against Apple’s modus operandi to allow developers access to such crucial data without some restrictions on its use in place as a protection for users. Similar restrictions exist for the Touch ID API, which doesn’t allow developers to access user fingerprint data at all, let alone store it.
There is one exception to this rule, however…
Last month Re/code’s John Paczkowski reported that Apple plans to introduce its new iPhone models at an event scheduled for next month, and today Re/code’s Paczkowski reports that Apple will also reveal its wearable product (i.e. iWatch/iBand) alongside the new iPhones:
Apple now plans to unveil a new wearable alongside the two next-generation iPhones we told you the company will debut on September 9th. [...] The new device will, predictably, make good use of Apple’s HealthKit health and fitness platform. It will also — predictably — make good use of HomeKit, the company’s new framework for controlling connected devices — though it’s not clear how broadly or in what way.
Tim Cook took some time to visit a VA hospital in Palo Alto today, accompanied by Rep. Anna Eshoo of the CA-18 congressional district, according to a photo the executive tweeted. The Palo Alto VA hospital is one of many medical facilities around the country using Apple’s iPads to help treat members of the U.S. armed forces.
Reuters noted today that Apple is working with healthcare professionals at hospitals across the country, including Mount Sinai and John Hopkins, in preparation for the rollout of the HealthKit system in iOS 8. The goal is to ensure that medical personnel are ready to read data from the system when it ships later this year.
This move is hardly surprising, as Apple intends HealthKit to serve as a collection place for all of a user’s health-related data, which can be valuable—even lifesaving—during a medical emergency. In fact, the Mayo Clinic demoed the first HealthKit-enabled application earlier this year during WWDC:
Apple has just filed for HealthKit trademarks in both the US and Europe ahead of iOS 8’s launch this fall and in at least one filing includes watches in a list of goods that could take advantage of the health-tracking software.
While the filing in the US (filed July 31) only includes classifications for computer software and covers the HealthKit text, a filing in Europe (published yesterday) extends classifications to include health, fitness, and exercise sensors, medical devices, and watches: Read more
Apple today released iOS 8 beta 4 to developers. It is now available via Software Update in Settings for those running earlier betas of iOS 8 on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The new update likely brings further design enhancements and bug fixes. iOS 8 comes out this fall and adds new features like health tracking, improved messaging, more efficient email management, and bolstered photo editing. We’ll be updating this post (below) as we discover new changes, and you can send us what you find to email@example.com.
The Wall Street Journal has published a new report claiming that Apple’s upcoming entry to the smartwatch market will sport ten or more sensors for collecting health data. The report also claims that the company is working on multiple versions for the wearable device, which is expected to be released later this year.
The iWatch is expected to be a health-focused device and will likely work with Apple’s new Health application, which it debuted earlier this month at its Worldwide Developer Conference. The application and its associated framework, called HealthKit, already have built-in support for certain types of devices without the need for a third-party application.
WebMD today launched “Healthy Target”, a feature within its iOS app that lets users track health data from a variety of sources like activity trackers, glucose meters, and other iPhone-connected health and fitness accessories. The feature lets users set goals, track habits, get easy to understand summaries of biometric data, and also provides progress reports and inspiration along the way. WebMD says the feature “will provide valuable assistance to individuals looking to manage chronic conditions like Type 2 diabetes and obesity, as well as to a broader audience interested in achieving their fitness goals or more generally living a healthier lifestyle.” The feature acts a lot like Apple’s new Health app, which is about to launch alongside its new HealthKit platform for developers this fall with iOS 8. Read more
Following Apple employees’ meeting with the FDA to discuss “mobile medical applications” earlier this year, AppleToolbox has published a response from the FDA to a Freedom of Information Act Request asking for more information about what was discussed.
A response to the request took three months to complete, and arrived just after Apple introduced its new HealthKit platform and Health app for iOS 8 last week. While much the FDA’s answer sounds like Apple was discussing HealthKit, the response also gives some interesting clues that Apple is working on health products that go beyond the sensors currently in the iPhone and iPad:
With the potential for more sensors on mobile devices, Apple believes there is the opportunity to do more with devices, and that there may be a moral obligation to do more… Sensors already exist on medical devices. For instance, Apple’s devices have cameras and accelerometers. There is still an opportunity to innovate, but Apple wants to make sure they are on the side of the FDA.
So we can assume Apple was likely meeting with the FDA for HealthKit, which takes advantage of the iPhone’s sensors and data collected by third-party apps through already available accessories, but it was also discussing implications of possibly tapping into additional sensors and doing more in the way of measuring health data. It won’t be any surprise to those that have followed our reports on iWatch as far back as last year, and we’ve continued following as Apple builds a team of medical, fitness, and sensor experts to work on the project. Read more