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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:10 PM   #1
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Apple Hires Chief Medical Officer From Pulse Oximetry Company Masimo, Possibly for iWatch Team




Over the course of the last year, Apple has made several hires from the medical and sensor field, presumably to bolster the team of experts working on its much-rumored smart watch project, and MacRumors today learned of another high-profile sensor expert that has joined the company.

Michael O'Reilly, M.D., formerly the Chief Medical Officer and EVP of Medical Affairs at Masimo Corporation, left his position in July of 2013 to take on a role at Apple, possibly on the iWatch team. News of O'Reilly's employment at Apple was first leaked to MobiHealthNews last week and when contacted for comment earlier today, Masimo told MacRumors it "could not dispute" what had been reported.

While O'Reilly was at Masimo, the company developed several cutting edge pulse oximetry devices, including the iSpO2 Pulse Oximeter that connects to the iPhone and gives readings via an accompanying app. The iSpO2, which takes its readings from a finger, is designed to measure both oxygen saturation in the blood and pulse rate, with technology that allows it to take readings during movement and with low blood flow.

The iSpO2 Pulse Oximeter for iPhone
While it is not clear what position O'Reilly holds with Apple or how his pulse oximetry expertise will be used by the company, he does join a number of other hires in the medical field that have reportedly been recruited for the iWatch team. In 2013, Apple hired several scientists and executives from notable sensor companies like AccuVein, C8 MediSensors, and Senseonics, and two weeks ago, another report pointed to two additional hires in the sensor field.

Reports have suggested that Apple's smart watch project, the iWatch, could focus heavily on health sensors and biometrics, possibly including features like a pedometer and a heart rate monitor. Apple's multitude of hires in the health field does suggest, however, that the company could include even more advanced sensor technology in the iWatch or in a future product.

With the addition of O'Reilly, Apple has now hired employees with expertise in pulse oximetry, vasculature visualization (vein finding), non-invasive glucose monitoring, blood chemistry monitoring via microneedle, heart/breath rate monitoring, and fitness. Notably, several hires have also had experience with low-profile, non-invasive biosensor devices.

On his LinkedIn page, O'Reilly is also listed as both an Adjunct Associate Professor of Anesthesiology at the University of Michigan and a Professor of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Care at the University of California, Irvine.

Article Link: Apple Hires Chief Medical Officer From Pulse Oximetry Company Masimo, Possibly for iWatch Team
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:12 PM   #2
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damn! this iwatch is going to be a mobile hospital!
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:12 PM   #3
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Now that it's 2014 and within a timeframe for an iWatch, this is going to start getting exciting!
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:13 PM   #4
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The iWatch is gonna be awesome!
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:19 PM   #5
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it seems that the watch is not nearly as close to being finished as i would have hoped. if they are still hiring people for sensors they can't possibly be finished with the design or testing of the watch. hopefully they speed things up!
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:20 PM   #6
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it seems that the watch is not nearly as close to being finished as i would have hoped. if they are still hiring people for sensors they can't possibly be finished with the design or testing of the watch. hopefully they speed things up!
Note though that the hire was supposedly made last July….
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:21 PM   #7
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Good reporting Macrumors !!

this mythical iWatch is getting more and more interesting for sure.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:23 PM   #8
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The only thing I don't understand is whether or not this will be stand-alone device or not.

If it is, it will require sim card, bluetooth, GPS, etc...

If it is not, it will require an iPhone at all times.


It it's a stand-along, it would be awesome for fitness activities with a built in pedometer, heart-rate monitor, blood pressure monitor, etc..... and maybe paired with some awesome Apple bluetooth headphones and we would have a winning device.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:38 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by osx11 View Post
The only thing I don't understand is whether or not this will be stand-alone device or not.
The only thing? Nobody knows any thing.

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Originally Posted by Sky Blue View Post
damn! this iwatch is going to be a mobile hospital!
Just wait till you see the prostate exam app!
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:42 PM   #10
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With every iWatch rumor seems there are less people complaining "who needs a watch!?" ....when looking at current so called smart watches I have to agree that they are not impressive at all, I have a pebble collecting dust somewhere that I wasted few $ on thru kickstarter....I have good hopes for this upcoming apple watch if not first gen then 2nd.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:42 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by osx11 View Post
The only thing I don't understand is whether or not this will be stand-alone device or not.

If it is, it will require sim card, bluetooth, GPS, etc...

If it is not, it will require an iPhone at all times.


It it's a stand-along, it would be awesome for fitness activities with a built in pedometer, heart-rate monitor, blood pressure monitor, etc..... and maybe paired with some awesome Apple bluetooth headphones and we would have a winning device.
My guess is that the "iWatch" will be usable standalone, but better paired with an iDevice (more data acquisition, display). The "iWatch" could probably read pulse off of the wrist, but a pulse oximeter would have to read it off a finger tip, so I would expect a blue tooth LE connection.

If the iWatch has a good range of sensors available at launch, it will be a very desirable device for athletes and persons with medical issues, and connection to an iDevice would give it the ability to upload the sensor data to a physician.

I would buy an "iWatch" for this capability.

(by standalone, I don't mean a WiFi or Cellular connection; just data capture and display.)
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:44 PM   #12
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If there's a way to get pulse ox through the arm skin, I'm in. But as far as I know the only pulse ox you can get through direct skin is the earlobe because the skin is way too thin there.

If they figure out a way to get your pulse ox while you are walking, jogging, through this watch thingy, that'll be amazing for fitness. LG showed off some earphones that gets your pulse ox from the ear.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:45 PM   #13
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Just wait till you see the prostate exam app!
I hope it doest require a probe
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:48 PM   #14
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would be interesting to see the strap on the iwatch take your pulse.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:49 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by osx11 View Post
The only thing I don't understand is whether or not this will be stand-alone device or not.

If it is, it will require sim card, bluetooth, GPS, etc...

If it is not, it will require an iPhone at all times.


It it's a stand-along, it would be awesome for fitness activities with a built in pedometer, heart-rate monitor, blood pressure monitor, etc..... and maybe paired with some awesome Apple bluetooth headphones and we would have a winning device.
I have a feeling it will be. And probably one of the reasons Apple hasn't released anything yet. They want something that can be stand alone, does more than the existing "smart" watches do and has decent battery life. I'm prepared to wait for that. I certainly won't pay hundreds of dollars for a dumb device that requires a BT connection to my phone and has crap battery life.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:57 PM   #16
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I hope people can understand the potential of this product by now.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 06:59 PM   #17
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I hope they make a stand-alone band version I could wear on my other wrist. I have a small collection of watches already and wear one everyday.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 07:00 PM   #18
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Getting more and more interesting!

I wonder what kind of purpose they see this device serving.
I don't suppose they think checking pulses and collecting simple statistics like that are enough, there's gotta be something more disruptive about the device to warrant a brand new product.

Time will tell...
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 07:01 PM   #19
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At last, the penny has dropped for the watchers.

The iWatch may well have some form of simple monitoring, but I reckon Apple is going much further into the medical field.

Already iPads are used extensively in hospitals for displaying scan and x-ray results. Integrated medical systems could be the next big field for Apple, just as instrumentation was for Hewlett-Packard in the 1960s. Could stray into Agilent's backyard.

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Old Jan 30, 2014, 07:06 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Illusion986 View Post
I hope it doest require a probe
Let's put it this way: It will put the "i" in iWatch.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by iLondoner View Post
At last, the penny has dropped for the watchers.

The iWatch may well have some form of simple monitoring, but I reckon Apple is going much further into the medical field.

Already iPads are used extensively in hospitals for displaying scan and x-ray results. Integrated medical systems could be the next big field for Apple, just as instrumentation was for Hewlett-Packard in the 1960s. Could stray into Agilent's backyard.

.
I suspect you are onto something This is why I thought Apple might make a play for the remnants of Kodak, with their medical imaging products and patents.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 07:30 PM   #21
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I hope people can understand the potential of this product by now.
Yeah, the sad part is that people still don't. 'Watches are useless'. Good thing Apple actually has intelligent, imaginative people working for them, as opposed to the people who can't even think past 'It tells time'.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 08:21 PM   #22
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This thing is sounding more and more like a Star Trek medical tricorder.

If all of these medical related acquisitions relate to the iwatch, then it's real smart of apple to carve a niche for the product because it creates a specific purpose for the device. Many don't need a watch anymore because their smartphone tells time, and no one certainly needs a smartwatch in a conventional sense because a small display isn't the best way to view your content. I'm sure apple's iwatch will do things like show iMessages, etc. but it would just be secondary to being a health monitoring device first. It seems apple isn't just out to turn a smartphone into a watch, which is what some companies have decided to do. No, apple's iwatch seems more than that.

Last edited by sully54; Jan 30, 2014 at 08:29 PM. Reason: Spelling
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 08:39 PM   #23
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sweet, a $150 pulse ox to implement into my iwatch...all medical tech is way overpriced.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 09:10 PM   #24
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damn! this iwatch is going to be a mobile hospital!
It will likely include EMR in the future.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 09:37 PM   #25
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More fuel to....

the argument about Apple, if currently prototyping/making a smart watch, looks to differentiate itself with a wide set of features over the current offers. Seems like the pre-iPod market with the Nomad players......

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