Report: iWatch Won’t Be as Advanced as Expected
According to a new report from MobiHealth News, Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) much-anticipated iWatch won’t be as advanced as some have recently speculated. Apple has hired a plethora of health experts recently who are rumored to be working on health-related sensors and data for the iWatch, but MobiHealth News’s sources have said that the device won’t be able to monitor things like blood sugar or hydration and so won’t need to be monitored by the Food and Drug Administration.
The sources also said that, like other smartwatches currently available on the market, the iWatch will be dependent on interacting with a user’s iPhone and won’t be able to operate independently. While it’s possible the device could have WiFi capabilities, it won’t be like the equivalent of a wrist-worn smartphone. Even though the device won’t be a replacement for the iPhone, it will be more advanced than current health-tracking smartwatches like the Nike (NYSE:NKE) FuelBand. The FuelBand records data through a point system, but the iWatch will be able to more accurately record data like the number of calories burned.
It was reported earlier this month that back in December some Apple executives met with officials from the FDA, leading to more speculation about whether the iWatch would need to get FDA approval in order to function the way Apple wants it to. MobiHealth said that the meeting was actually for Apple executives to learn more about the FDA’s rules regarding mobile medical devices and to ensure that the iWatch won’t need FDA approval.
Much of the FDA’s concern would be over the rumored Healthbook app on the device, which will be responsible for monitoring medical and health information. According to the FDA’s rules, the app can’t analyze too much medical information if Apple wants to avoid the necessity of FDA approval. Things that the app will be able to monitor, according to MobiHealth’s sources, include sleep patterns, calories burned, diet, and stress levels. The device could also remind you when to take medication and help monitor long-term medical conditions by using third-party data from medical apps that have already been cleared by the FDA. Monitoring data on women’s health and pregnancy is another possibility.