After Google essentially slapped Apple with a white glove last week with many of its wearable related announcements, it’s not surprising that an Apple story has hit the press to counter it. Wile technically the hiring took place in late May, or early June, it’s come out that Apple has hired on the ex-Atlas Wearables engineer, Alex Hsieh, who was instrumental in developing Atlas’ sports orientated fitness band.
Since being taken on, the new Apple hiree has been working as a firmware developer for a currently unnamed project. This isn’t too surprising, as Hsieh’s main influence on Atlas’ wearable was in the software department, with much of the device’s accuracy put down to its strong software interaction.
It seems likely with this sort of pedigree, that Hsieh is working on the much rumoured Apple Smartwatch, which could be just another wearable with some basic functions that tries to replace or augment its smarphone counterpart. However, there are rumours that Apple might have cracked the ability to track a user’s glucose levels without breaking the skin, which would make it a real stand out in the industry, as well as revolutionising the lives of diabetics the world over.
Whether Apple does manage to nail that feature down though, its iWatch is expected to have a much more health focus than other smartwatches from rival developers. The iWatch is likely to use a health-tracking application platform called HealthKit, which will track data in a similar manner to fitness bands. However, it will also take into consideration more medically focused data like blood pressure.
That data is expected to be stored in a central location, though how Apple plans to use it remains unclear at this time.
For now though we’ll have to wait and see, as while the wearable is expected to land this year – most likely in October – we still don’t have many firm details on it. There’s no word on an actual release date, or on a final price and likewise with many of its features. However looking to iOS 8, which is also set to be released later this year, we can make some guesses since it too will feature much of the health related features that the wearable will likely employ.
Hsieh could of course be working on something else entirely, perhaps a second generation of the device. Being hired as recently as he was, doesn’t give him much time to have an impact on a product that is expected to hit the shelves shortly.[Thanks AppleInsider]