Apple’s Secret Team to Develop Diabetes Monitoring Wearable

Diabetes Monitoring Wearable

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Diabetes is one of the serious health problems facing the world. Preventing it is the better choice than treatment, and monitoring is the key and that is why Apple is on the verge of creating a wearable tool for its monitoring.

One of the significant vision of Apple’s co-founder, Steve Jobs, was to develop devices that are wearable and can continuously and non-invasively monitor the important body vital signs, especially the sugar levels in the blood. After Job’s death in 2011, Apple is continuing that vision with a team dedicated to fulfill it. The company hired a team composed of biomedical engineers working in an unnamed office in Palo Alto in California – just a few miles from the Apple headquarters.

This is, in fact, a secret initiative, and if fully developed and operational, will be a big breakthrough for the medical industries and life sciences. In fact, this is considered the “holy grail” in the field of life sciences. There are lots of life sciences enterprises and companies that have painstakingly tried what Apple has been doing, but the end result is always a failure simply because there is a high wall to climb when it comes to tracking the blood sugar levels in an accurate manner without having to pierce the skin.

Apple Product

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This hard work has been going on for about five years now. They are working to fulfill Jobs’ vision of having wearable devices, like that of smart watches, that can be used also as monitoring tool for important body vitals, such as heart rate, oxygen levels and blood sugar levels. It can be traced this effort in 2010 wherein Apple acquired Cor after the latter’s CEO Bob Messerschmidt sent a cold email to Jobs regarding sensor technologies that will be used for health and wellness. Messerschmidt then became part of the team for Apple Watch.

Rumor has it that this secret team has been reporting their progress to Johnny Srouji, who is the Senior VP for the hardware technologies. An unconfirmed report stated that there are about 30 individuals working on this project last year and it is possible that the secret team ramped up their efforts as there are speculations that many of the biomedical experts were hired by Apple and these experts came from reputable companies like Masimo, Vital Connect, Medtronic, C8 Medisensors and Sano.

diabetes sensor

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It is believed that Apple is making efforts to develop optical sensors in which a light will be shined or directed through the skin in order to accurately measure the indications or level of blood sugars. Accurate detection of the blood sugar levels has been a huge challenge that even one of the leading experts in this field, John L. Smith, stated that this is “the most difficult technical challenge I have encountered in my career.” This field of expertise has been full of failures, as Smith suggest, but these challenges will not stop companies like Apple from persisting to make a huge effort of cracking this opportunity.

Succeeding in this endeavor will entail the company hundreds of millions of dollars or even reach a billion dollars. With a huge market potential market for such a non-invasive glucose monitoring tool, it is not surprising that the life science team from Google are into this research and development as well. Google’s version is to measure blood sugar levels through the eyes by developing a contact lens to do it.

If Apple succeeds, this breakthrough will be a huge boost for millions of people suffering with diabetes. It is possible that new medical studies will open up and there will be a huge market for consumers in tracking blood sugar non-invasively, for the purpose of health and wellness. With this, Apple Watch will not only become a luxury, but a necessity for those striving to live a healthy lifestyle.