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Apple may be designing and developing its own "health hardware products," according to a job listing spotted by MyHealthyApple.

health-hardware-devices.jpg


Apple is hiring a Senior Engineering Project Manager to join Apple's Health Hardware group, which is part of Apple's Health Technologies division. The listing explicitly states that Apple is developing its own health hardware products, which appear to be separate from the Apple Watch. Unlike the Beddit sleep tracker, which was acquired by Apple in 2017, these "health hardware products" would come directly under the Apple brand.

The Health Hardware group is looking for an Engineering Project Manager (EPM) to lead the design and development of Apple-branded Health Hardware products.

Health Technologies is an interdisciplinary team of engineers and creators at Apple who are involved in a wide range of initiatives, products, and services, such as Apple Fitness+ and partnerships with Biogen and ZimmerBiomet.

The role sits among several other EPM hires on the Jobs at Apple website. The Health Hardware EPM manager is expected to oversee the product build itself as well as be responsible for interfacing with suppliers and even marketing.

EPMs are fearless organizers who are ready to work with the highly skilled Hardware, Software, Mechanical Design and Industrial Design teams to identify and resolve potential risks to the schedule and quality of the product. The EPM will interact with these engineering design disciplines plus Safety, Reliability, Marketing, Packaging, Manufacturing, Component Engineering, and other resources inside and outside Apple.

The EPM is also the key interface to the suppliers, driving build readiness at the factory and managing the build itself. Success is defined in terms of the quality and timeliness of the pre-production builds and the start of mass production.

The listing's emphasis on hardware product development and "driving build readiness at the factory" may suggest that Apple-branded health hardware products are already fairly developed, and could even be set to enter factory production soon.

Apple is increasingly interested in health and fitness innovations. Most Apple health features have been channeled through the Apple Watch and iPhone so far, but with HealthKit and the health infrastructure it has established, it would make sense for Apple to offer a broader range of health hardware products.

The new health hardware product job description does not provide any indications about the nature of these new products, but other HealthKit-compatible products on the market currently include weighing scales, blood-pressure monitors, thermometers, and more.

Article Link: 'Apple-Branded Health Hardware Products' Teased in Job Listing
 
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macintoshmac

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May 13, 2010
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Makes sense seeing as they want to be seen as a lifestyle company and health is a booming sector where the money is, and they are welcome as they will definitely leave a positive impact here. Depending on affordability and the products, I would rather use Apple's products since it will mean fewer apps on my device that contain my health data and can sell it off to interested parties.

I currently have a smart scale, and I would rather it be Apple's than Lenovo's, since the only way I can get the readings into Health app is if I first use Lenovo's app to bring the data on the scale into my iPhone. Now, who's to say Lenovo is not swiping my health data out to interested parties? I'd rather spend (reasonably) more and get an Apple scale and have peace of mind.

That said, they should not have exited the markets they did - display, AirPort, etc. I would like to see them coming back to those products as well.
 
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huges84

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Mar 7, 2012
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As an automotive engineer, I can say that we shouldn’t read the mentions of manufacturing readiness as indicating that this project is anywhere but the beginning stages. If you aren’t focused on manufacturing with quality from the outset, you will be in a giant world of hurt later. Any successful mass production engineering company knows this well.
 
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seatton

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Nov 7, 2013
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Seattle, WA
This is exciting, but I hope they will do this in the long run. I would be sad if eventually they killed the health products just like what they did with Airport Extreme and Express.
 
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4jasontv

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Why would Apple compete directly with Withings and the like? They already get royalties for the healthkit branding and these products either have low replacement rates or are abandoned by customers because they were essentially a gimmick. Name one healthkit product you could see yourself replacing every 1 to 2 years.

Apple doesn't need to make a shake weight.

Is there any evidence that gymkit/healthkit is getting resistance or pushback from consumer brands?
 
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macintoshmac

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Why would Apple compete directly with Withings and the like? They already get royalties for the healthkit branding and these products either have low replacement rates or are abandoned by customers because they were essentially a gimmick. Name one healthkit product you could see yourself replacing every 1 to 2 years.

Apple doesn't need to make a shake weight.

Is there any evidence that gymkit/healthkit is getting resistance or pushback from consumer brands?

This is probably why they exited the display and networking market, since they cannot keep selling devices every year like they want to. Apple would sell us a new phone every month if it could. But, like I said in my previous post, I would rather they enter with commitment and give us devices that are affordable, built to last and are usable from the get go.
 
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4jasontv

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This is probably why they exited the display and networking market, since they cannot keep selling devices every year like they want to. Apple would sell us a new phone every month if it could. But, like I said in my previous post, I would rather they enter with commitment and give us devices that are affordable, built to last and are usable from the get go.
The only thing I can think of is that cardio equipment manufactures are leaning on android platforms and that makes Apple nervous they will lose their ability to integrate with their products. Maybe they think they can put pressure on ICON and Spirit? Or maybe they recognize that these brands are moving towards proprietary ecosystems.
 
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Arsenikdote

macrumors regular
Why would Apple compete directly with Withings and the like? They already get royalties for the healthkit branding and these products either have low replacement rates or are abandoned by customers because they were essentially a gimmick. Name one healthkit product you could see yourself replacing every 1 to 2 years.

Apple doesn't need to make a shake weight.

Is there any evidence that gymkit/healthkit is getting resistance or pushback from consumer brands?
I am not sure if you are asking the question to then answer it or if you are posing the question for real. However, I believe the main answer for why Apple would compete in this market with Withings or anyone else is popularity and privacy. Anything that deals with your health right now is booming and with Apple's focus on privacy, it means that they can promise to protect your health data. As someone else pointed out, my HealthKit connected bathroom scale still first sends the data to a third party app before getting into HealthKit. If I could bypass sending that data to someone else first I certainly would.

BUT! I doubt Apple is actually going to release competing products across the board. Likely they will release a few "key" items that directly relate to the larger initiatives they are pushing (like sleep monitoring). The bigger question is how LONG Apple will stay in any market they enter, they don't exactly have the best track record for things like that (RIP AirPort Extreme) 🤷🏻‍♂️
 
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4jasontv

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Jul 31, 2011
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I am not sure if you are asking the question to then answer it or if you are posing the question for real. However, I believe the main answer for why Apple would compete in this market with Withings or anyone else is popularity and privacy. Anything that deals with your health right now is booming and with Apple's focus on privacy, it means that they can promise to protect your health data. As someone else pointed out, my HealthKit connected bathroom scale still first sends the data to a third party app before getting into HealthKit. If I could bypass sending that data to someone else first I certainly would.

BUT! I doubt Apple is actually going to release competing products across the board. Likely they will release a few "key" items that directly relate to the larger initiatives they are pushing (like sleep monitoring). The bigger question is how LONG Apple will stay in any market they enter, they don't exactly have the best track record for things like that (RIP AirPort Extreme) 🤷🏻‍♂️
I can see the privacy aspect, but isn't that already one of the big selling point of healthkit?

As far as the APE, they did release 7 generations over 13 years so it's not like they simply abandoned the product. I think the issue was that the biggest selling point of the AirPort was a feature that directly competed with the far more profitable iCloud service.
 
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Arsenikdote

macrumors regular
I can see the privacy aspect, but isn't that already one of the big selling point of healthkit?
Once the data is IN HealthKit yes. However, I have a Greater Goods bathroom scale. The scale is Wi-Fi and records my weight in their "Health Guru's" app. This app is connected to HealthKit. When my weight is logged into HealthKit from Weight Guru's, going forward that data is protected. HOWEVER, I am still subject to whatever Greater Goods wants to do with that data while being transferred to HealthKit from the scale using their app. Of course we can choose products based on what they do and don't do with our data, but it seems that companies get VERY creative about hiding how your data is used, so I really don't have confidence that it isn't being used. Not at least until legislation is put into place to enforce it through legal precedents.
 
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Student of Life

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Oct 13, 2020
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Its not a bad move but to make everything work smoothly Apple needs to get back into the router business once we have a standard that wont be changed for a while.
 
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winglet69

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Jul 6, 2010
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They should just buy Withings. Not like they'd be the first phone company to do so. I'll bet they'd do better with it though! :p

I love my Smart Body Monitor, BPM Core, Sleep, and Thermo. Very Apple-like design, slick integration of all data into one app. Apple would have a long way to go to get me to replace any of them. I do aggregate data into Health but it's always been pretty erratic, far more than the native apps it draws from.

As far as data security, it's only ever going to be as secure as the weakest link. Hardware is one thing, what about all the fitness and diet apps that link to the fitness tracking apps to track macros and calories etc? Unless Apple can replace Strava and Garmin Connect and food apps like MyFitnessPal and Carb Manager the user will always have to choose between sharing data somewhere or lose core functionality. Especially as many of them are social media platforms in themselves that some have invested in for decades. A bit akin to Apple TV+ taking on Netflix. Can complement but not close to replacing at this point!
 
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thejadedmonkey

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May 28, 2005
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As an automotive engineer, I can say that we shouldn’t read the mentions of manufacturing readiness as indicating that this project is anywhere but the beginning stages. If you aren’t focused on manufacturing with quality from the outset, you will be in a giant world of hurt later. Any successful mass production engineering company knows this well.
It's slightly beyond beginning. They've decided to invest enough into the project to get to the stage where they are concerned about manufacturing. That means they've decided financing, have a team in place, ideas, and are somewhere in the prototyping stage. A good hardware engineer should understand how to design something with mass manufacturing in mind, so I'd actually wager that this is somewhere in the late prototyping stages even.
 
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easy4lif

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Mar 31, 2005
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love to see something along the lines of a temp monitior, weight scale, and or a bp monitor all integrated with apples health app
 
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