CNBC reports that Apple has a small team of biomedical engineers working on non-invasive sensors that can monitor blood sugar levels continuously and without any user intervention.
The super secret initiative was first envisioned by Apple’s late co-founder Steve Jobs and sees the biomedical engineers from the company working at a small office in Palo Alto. Such a sensor will allow diabetes patients to better keep their sugar levels in check, which can be life-changing for many. Apple has been working on this front for the last five years.
While many life sciences companies have also tried to develop a similar sensor, none of them have met with any success so far. Apple, in fact, has been doing better than them as it is currently conducting feasibility trials at clinical trials along the Bay Area. It is also taking the help of consultants to ensure that it follows all the regulatory norms.
Up until a year ago, around 30 people were working on the project, but since Apple snapped up a lot of biomedical experts from various medical companies, the number has gone up considerably. Some of these experts are working on the diabetes sensor, while others joined the Apple Watch team. This team currently reports to Apple’s senior vice president of hardware technologies, Johny Srouji.
As per CNBC’s sources, Apple is developing optical sensors, which involves shining a light through the skin to measure the blood glucose levels. However, as John L. Smith, an expert in this field, says that continuously detecting blood sugar levels through a non-invasive sensor is “the most difficult technical challenge” he has ever encountered in his career.
If Apple is able to develop such a sensor and able to integrate it into the Apple Watch, it could very well bring about a revolution in this space and turn the Apple Watch into a must have device for many.