Apple details the technology and functionality behind Apple Watch’s heart rate monitor

watch-heart-rate-monitor-hero

Ahead of the Apple Watch making its way onto the wrists of consumers, Apple has published a new support page detailing the device’s heart rate monitor. As we know, the Apple Watch includes a heart rate reader to measure a person’s intensity during workouts.

With knowledge of this intensity data, the Watch is able to more accurately measure the amount of calories a person burns per day. Additionally, a user can check their heart rate at any time using a feature known as the Heart Rate Glance. But beyond these two user functions, this new support document details the technologies behind the hardware as well as some little known software features.

According to the document, the Apple Watch will silently measure your heart rate every 10 minutes. This data will be stored in the iOS 8 Health application for later viewing and integration with third-party health tracking applications and hardware.

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CES 2015: iHome debuts HomeKit SmartPlugs, SoundFlask speakers, wearables, Kineta pop-out battery speakers, more

iHome HomeKit SmartPlug

Every year, top-ranked Apple speaker maker iHome comes to CES with an impressive array of new products — including something to show off Apple’s latest technology — and it isn’t disappointing at the 2015 CES. In an advance briefing before the show officially opened, iHome revealed its first Apple HomeKit product, SmartPlug ($40), as well as some daring new speaker and headphone designs…

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…like the first speaker we’ve seen hidden inside a beautiful drinking flask. It’s called SoundFlask, and comes in coat pocket- ($50) and home bar-sized ($100) versions. Even the smaller version sounds really good given its size, and the flask cap twists to adjust the volume. All that’s missing is the ability to actually hold fluids. Read on for more.

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T-Mobile CEO predicts Apple Watch will take wearables mainstream in 2015

apple-watch

In the months leading up to the launch of the Apple Watch next year, early opinions about the smartwatch have been quite mixed. While some believe that the Apple Watch will be as successful as iconic products released ahead of it, including the iPhone, iPad, iPod and Mac, others are more skeptical about how much of an impact the device will truly have.

While the wearables market is forecasted to become over a $5 billion industry by 2018, it hasn’t reached that point just yet. But T-Mobile CEO John Legere certainly thinks it will sooner than later, predicting that the Apple Watch launch in 2015 will be the turning point in which the wearables market goes from niche to mainstream. Read more

Holiday Gift Guide: Health gadgets — get a healthy start for 2015

Holiday Gift Guide 2When the new year rolls around, a lot of us have New Year’s resolutions to become a healthier person and plan to exercise more. Last year I set my New Year’s resolution to do just that. However, last year was the first year I really used technology and wearables to help me with my journey, and I successfully lost sixty pounds. These gadgets helped me with my weight loss journey. They can keep you focused, inspire you, motivate you, and carry your gear.

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Fitbit fitness tracking lineup dropped from Apple Online Store

Apple Watch fitness

Apple Watch will include fitness and health tracking features

Update: Fitbit statement below the fold…

If you’re in the market for a Fitbit device and you’re shopping at the Apple Store, you’ll probably have to shop elsewhere to purchase the fitness tracker. Following report from Re/Code last month that Apple planned to drop the Fitbit line of wearable devices from its Apple Store lineup, Apple has today removed the Fitbit Flex and other Fitbit products from its online store following low inventory over the past week. While its unclear why Apple is no longer selling Fitbit products through its retail channels, on the surface the move is similar to Apple’s decision to discontinue selling Bose headphones and speakers at its retail and online stores.

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Apple reportedly dropping Fitbit wearables from its retail stores

Apple Watch fitness

According to Re/code, Apple may soon drop the Fitbit health tracking devices from its retail stores. The report lacked a specific reason for Apple planning to no longer carry Fitbit bands but noted Fitbit’s lack of support for HealthKit on iOS 8 so far as well as Apple’s own fitness tracking device plans with the release of the Apple Watch in 2015.

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Apple wearable reportedly only being previewed at iPhone event, shipping next year

via @EA_Roa

via @EA_Roa

Following Re/code’s report earlier this week that Apple will announce its wearable product (iWatch, iBand) alongside new iPhones on September 9th, Re/code now adds that the device won’t actually be available this year.

Sources in position to know tell me it won’t arrive at market for a few months. “It’s not shipping any time soon,” said one. So when does Apple plan to ship its eagerly anticipated wearable? That’s not clear, but my understanding is that we’re unlikely to see it at retail until after the holiday season — think early 2015.  Read more

Apple will reportedly unveil its wearable product alongside new iPhones next month

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.

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Google releases ‘Android Wear’ SDK developer preview, watches from LG, Moto & others due next quarter

silver_metal_600_00010Ahead of the release of Apple’s much rumored “iWatch” wearable product, Google has now officially announced Android’s entrance into wearables with project “Android Wear.” The Android Wear SDK allows developers to integrate a number of features into Android powered wearables and relies heavily on Google Now functionality, as we were first to report late last year.

Google also confirmed that it’s working with a handful of partners to bring Android Wear powered wearables to market by later this year: Read more

2014 to be a big year for wearables, with 17M devices expected to be sold

wearables

Market analyst Canalys reports that 1.6M fitness bands and smartwatches combined were sold in the second half of last year, and is predicting that more than 17M devices will be sold this year, driven largely by forecast sales of 8M smartwatches.

Though currently a relatively small market serving fitness enthusiasts, wearable bands represent a massive opportunity in the medical and wellness segment. 2014 will be the year that wearables become a key consumer technology, as the smart band segment is estimated to reach 8 million annual shipments. Canalys estimates that this number will grow to over 23 million units by 2015, and over 45 million by 2017 …  Read more

Apple hires sleep research expert Roy J.E.M Raymann from Philips for iWatch team

iWatch-you-sleep

Joining a longlist of Apple executives and new hires thought to be working on Apple’s highly anticipated iWatch project, the company has recently picked up Roy J.E.M Raymann from Philips Research, an expert on sleep research with extensive experience in wearables, sensors, and non-pharmacological methods of improving sleep quality. The possibilities here are absolutely fascinating…

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Jobs biographer Isaacson back-pedals on innovation comments, says ‘execution is what really matters’, Apple is best

A couple of weeks after describing Google as more innovative than Apple, and suggesting that Tim Cook was vulnerable to a shareholder revolt if he didn’t quickly release disruptive new products, Steve Jobs’ biographer Walter Isaacson has downplayed his remarks in a round-table discussion on Bloomberg TV.

I think [Google is] very innovative. I was not trying to contrast it to Apple or something. I know, all the Apple fans got mad […]

The one thing I will say is innovation is great, but it ain’t everything. It’s not the holy grail. Execution is what really matters, and Apple is the best at execution …  Read more