Apple’s first wearable device will likely feature health tracking functions that will advance this technology and push adoption, much like what the company accomplished for speech recognition through Siri. While rumors are somewhat contradicting, the device purportedly called iWatch MIGHT have an opto-electronic sensor to measure blood glucose levels constantly. Now if that is true, then I have no doubt that Apple will stay the world’s most valuable company for quite some time.
Tens of millions of Americans have diabetes today, numbers are growing. It doesn’t look much better across the globe. If I could see my glucose levels on my wrist constantly (right next to the time and my next appointment), without needing to withdraw blood every time I want to measure it (as diabetics do it today), then that would increase my chances of a longer life substantially. I would learn the impact of certain food on my glucose levels much quicker than I realistically can today, and accordingly I could adjust my insulin dosis much more accurately. A quick look at my watch 2 hours after lunch would tell me how those carbs I ate kicked up my glucose levels. At the end of the day, we’re all humans, and humans are lazy. Yes, one can measure glucose levels frequently today, but it takes discipline to do that to the extent one should.
It would not only benefit diabetics, though. Seeing the impact of that bag of chips or glass of coke on your blood glucose levels, blood oxygen levels and blood pressure, just by looking at your watch, would help ANYONE understand the digestive system better and make us change our self-destructive habits that the food industry has taught us over the decades. The impact of that empowerment on our overall health and the health insurance system as a whole would be tremendous. It could save the public healthcare sector billions. The estimated total economic cost of diagnosed diabetes in 2012 was $245 billion, a 41% increase from 2007.
I don’t know if those rumors about the Apple wearable are true. But I understand why Apple is going in that direction. The move could, once again, disrupt an entire industry and impact our lives the same way the introduction of the iPhone, the first “consumer smartphone”, did in 2007. Time to stock up on Apple stock folks!