Apple’s iWatch may be less complex at launch than we originally believed, but that hasn’t stopped the company from assembling a dream team of over 200 employees to work on the project.According to MobiHealthNews, Apple has over 200 people working on the iWatch project, which suggests it will be a major product launch for the company and not merely a hobby. Many of these employees are new hires that Apple has lured away from well-known medical and health sensor companies like Masimo and Philips.
An anonymous source told MobiHealthNews that the iWatch will not be a standalone device and initially won’t pack as much functionality as analysts and media expects. First and foremost, the iWatch will require a connection to the iPhone to realize its potential. It will be more like a fitness band than a smart wristwatch that you wear on your wrist.
Apple is allegedly designing the device, so it won’t run into FDA regulations. Apple recently met with the FDA to discuss the agency’s policy for mobile medical devices. This was an informational meeting and not one focused on approval for its iWatch device. Apple likely hopes to push the device to the market soon and doesn’t want to deal with regulatory delays.
Healthbook, according to MobiHealthNews sources, will serve as a repository for health and fitness information, along with limited data analysis that keeps the outside of FDA oversight. It’ll focus on exercise, sleep, diet and medicine management. Because the iWatch will be more consumer than medical-oriented, the device and its app won’t offer much in the way of fitness data analysis.
Though most of the rumors about the iWatch have focused on extraordinary features like glucose monitoring, the device likely won’t focus on technology, but experience. Apple’s goal is to move fitness tracking beyond the exercise-obsessed and bring it to the mass market. As such, the device will likely be a small step above the current generation of fitness trackers like the Fitbit Force. It will be the future iterations of the device that’ll benefit from the medical and sensor expertise Apple has been bringing into the company.
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