New Hires Point to Apple's Continued Research on Next-Generation Health Sensors

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jan 17, 2014.

  1. macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    With Apple CEO Tim Cook suggesting that Apple will use its skills building software, hardware, and services to create "great products" in product categories that Apple does not currently participate in, the company is making a number of potentially significant hires related to the development of next-generation medical sensors.

    According to a report from 9to5Mac, Apple has hired a pair of personal health sensor hardware experts in recent months.

    Apple recently hired Nancy Dougherty as a hardware engineer, according to her LinkedIn page. Dougherty was previously a hardware developer at Sano Intelligence, a biosensor startup that was profiled by The New York Times back in 2012.

    According to a Google cache of her LinkedIn page -- the current page reads slightly differently, with less detail about the projects she worked on -- Dougherty worked on a hardware product to monitor blood chemistry via a wearable device.
    Before working at Sano, Dougherty worked at Proteus Digital Health on a "Bluetooth-enabled electronic "Band-Aid" that monitors heart rate, respiration, motion, and temperature".

    Separately, Apple hired Ravi Narasimhan away from Vital Connect, a biosensor technology firm where he was "responsible for biosensor technology and algorithms for remote physiological monitoring with wearable medical devices". His devices could process a number of functions including heart monitoring, respiration, fall detection, posture and activity. He has been prolific writer, with a number of papers published in technical journals and he is listed as an inventor in dozens of patents.

    Both Dougherty and Narasimhan have electrical engineering degrees from Stanford. Last year, Apple made a number of other hires related to the health sensor field and 9to5Mac says both have joined the iWatch team.

    Aside from the hires, 9to5Mac reports that Apple is actively investigating iris scanning technology and is looking at using other sensors already built into the iPhone, like the accelerometer and compass, to improve facial recognition. Apple increased the iPhone's security significantly with the addition of the Touch ID sensor in the iPhone 5s.

    Article Link: New Hires Point to Apple's Continued Research on Next-Generation Health Sensors
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Jan 16, 2011
  3. macrumors 6502a


    Aug 30, 2004
    Could these two look any different?
    She looks like a hip designer, he looks like a corporate lawyer.
  4. macrumors 6502

    Apr 18, 2010
  5. Guest


    Jul 15, 2011
    Clovis, California
  6. macrumors G3


    May 18, 2008
    Hartford, CT
    I've been saying it for a while now, but Apple's smart watch will define the industry given the massive amount of health purchases made recently.

    Hell, I guarantee that years from now when all the "making of" books come out we will be reading how the Nike fuelbands that Apple employees have been wearing are actually the M8 motion chip packaged to look like the fuel band so they can test out in the open.
  7. macrumors 601

    Mr. Retrofire

    Mar 2, 2010
    Good to know, that we don't have prejudices.
  8. macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

    Jul 16, 2002
  9. macrumors 65816


    Oct 19, 2012
    These hires.....

    can signal, to me, that Apple is actively working to develop a product that differentiates itself of the current breed of "digital" or "smart" watches. Buying expertise in a field where a company is entering can make developing time to reduce. Also can help to bring out a more polished product/solution....

    Also, can be a hint Apple can put on market the so-highly rumored "iWatch" sooner than later. I am not sure if the expectations are for some moment in 2014....:eek:

  10. macrumors regular


    May 18, 2011
    Purple emos? They're turning into Google. Well, at least maybe they'll start innovating again. Oh!
  11. macrumors 65816


    Dec 5, 2012
    It must be natural... nobody does that to themselves on purpose.
  12. macrumors 603


    Nov 5, 2009
    You guys forgot to mention that Google is already working on contact lenses that measure glucose levels.

    I guess both companies think eyes are the future.
  13. macrumors 68020


    Feb 23, 2006
    San Francisco, CA
  14. macrumors 65816


    Aug 29, 2009
    I don't think Apple is interested in developping cutting-edge technologies for harvesting and selling customer health information ;)
  15. macrumors G3


    Feb 10, 2011
    A lot of diabetics would love to have a non invasive way to monitor glucose levels.
  16. macrumors 603


    Oct 5, 2008
    Well, one thing for sure: the girl is very smart. I'm impressed at her profile.
  17. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 19, 2012
    Slightly more invasive than a strap on a wrist though.

    Google contact vision 2020. Where your entire right field of vision is a strip of rotating adverts. Pumping your mind full of stuff you don't need. :)
  18. Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Sep 19, 2002
    Q Division, Los Angeles
    Here is the thread about Google's contact lens project.
  19. macrumors 6502


    Mar 28, 2013
    Ads right from your eye would be perfect.

    I've seen a movie like this. Planted on people and they see big corporation ads in everywhere. Elite people are exempted. Forgot the title of the movie. 2010-11 movie
  20. macrumors regular

    Sep 9, 2007

    I find this wildly exciting.

    No, seriously. Do you know how many lives could be saved by something like this? Imagine if it could detect a stroke, or a heart attack, the instant it happens. Imagine if it could figure out that you're dangerously low on potassium before you have any symptoms at all. Imagine it could detect rising levels of waste products in the bloodstream and alert you to possible kidney problems.

    A lot of these tests can be processed on a chip, repeatedly, with microscopic samples of blood. This kind of thing is not impossible, although I'm not sure if it's possible with current technology or not.

    Even if it were just a combination pedometer, heart rate monitor, blood pressure monitor, and smart-watch/phone interface, I'd seriously consider buying it. But some of these other possibilities really excite me.
  21. macrumors regular

    Feb 25, 2009
    I love that Apple is doing this. 2013 and we have no device to monitor and help ourselves in case of health problems?? The device will be bigger than the iphone/ipad without a doubt. Subscription based, and something you never thought you needed that you can´t live without literally.
  22. macrumors 68030


    Literrally hundreds of exciting possibilities are in the cards. A future iWatch with it's own App store could really rock, and change the face of sports medicine, and medicine in general, radically.
  23. macrumors regular

    Feb 6, 2012
    LOL at all the deleted posts. Pretty sad for that iapplesteve guy to pick a fight over nothing.
  24. macrumors newbie

    Jun 8, 2011
  25. macrumors 6502a


    Oct 23, 2007
    Columbus, OH
    I kinda find it sad that many of the comments are about the color of Ms Dougherty's hair and not her resumé.

    With that out of the way. I'm really impressed with the new hires and the aim to create/improve health sensors. My mum's a Type 2 Diabetic, and anything would be better than the current monitor system.

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