For decades, Apple has taken the path less traveled. The company has never been viewed as a traditional healthcare company, but rather as a technology giant that has pioneered some of the most innovative technology the world has seen. Nonetheless, over the years, the company has expanded the use of its technology into other domains and industries. One such domain is healthcare.

In a ground-breaking report released earlier this month, Apple highlights how far the company has progressed within the realm of healthcare, and also describes its vision for the future of the company. The report specifically highlights how its software and hardware have enabled users to rethink the way they interact with their own bodies and health. It discusses how its technology “provide[s] users with high-quality data gathered throughout the day and night and meaningful insights into their health…” Indeed, the company believes that “providing individuals with insights into their health and fitness empowers them to set and stick to personal health goals and, when necessary, seek guidance and care from their medical providers.”

Furthermore, Apple has enabled an entire ecosystem for other creators to develop their own health applications and new ways to measure different health metrics. As the report illustrates, Apple’s “APIs are enabling third-party developers to create new solutions that promote healthy lifestyles and innovation in health. There are now tens of thousands of apps on the App Store that use our HealthKit API, so they can incorporate data users choose to share from the Health app to offer innovative health and fitness experiences, with rigorous privacy and data security protocols. With users’ permission, these apps can also contribute data back to the Health app.”

Apple has undoubtedly made incredible strides with regards to personal health. Take for example its recent release of the blood oxygen application, which measures blood oxygen saturation levels and has been an important metric for health when a patient is afflicted with Covid-19. Another important application is its electrocardiogram (ECG) tool, used to detect heart rhythms. This ECG technology has been one of Apple’s biggest investments in healthcare, including the massive study that the company sponsored alongside Stanford University to assess the Apple Watch’s efficacy in detecting cardiac arrhythmias.

Furthermore, Apple has a rejuvenated vision to use its technology to improve communication of healthcare data: “We support nurses, physicians, and healthcare professionals on their mission to deliver the best care to their patients. Our technologies, devices, and clinical apps help enable hospitals, clinics, and other providers to deliver better care for their patients by helping communication and workflow within the care team and by enhancing the patient experience from registration all the way through discharge.” Indeed, patient care throughput and data analytics have become pressing areas in healthcare that many companies are attempting to improve. Oracle recently purchased Cerner with the intention of improving electronic health records. Congruently, Google is attempting to better unify healthcare data through its Care Studio platform, bringing the “power of search” to medicine in order to streamline patient data.

Undoubtedly, Apple has a lot of potential in leveraging its products to better contribute to the healthcare industry. Perfecting products in this vertical may take the company many years. However, one thing is certain—Apple is no longer just a technology titan, but is quickly becoming a powerhouse in healthcare.


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