Apple hires health sensor talent, likely for iWatch

By Aditi Pai
Nike Fuel Band Apple CEO Tim Cook is a fan of the wrist-worn activity tracker Nike+ FuelBand

In February, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal confirmed already-circulating rumors that Apple is developing a smart watch. Apple's most recent hiring decisions have further solidified this rumor -- new employees share a common thread of having a mobile health development background, according to GigaOm.

Ueyn Block, former Director of Optics & Systems Engineering at C8 MediSensors and Todd Whitehurst, former Vice President of Product Development at Senseonics were among Apple's recent high profile hires, according to 9to5mac. Both companies develop glucose sensors.

While Block's LinkedIn profile confirms the change from C8 Medisensors to a technical lead of optical sensing at Apple, Whitehurst's profile only shows a change from Senseonics to a director of hardware development at Apple. (Correction: Originally this article incorrectly spelled Todd Whitehurst's last name.)

When C8 Medisensors went out of business due to a consistency issue with glucose-level-analysis technology, the company's former CTO, Rudy Hofmeister, told 9to5mac that Apple moved to hire many of C8 Medisensors' directors and engineers, including designers and scientists that specialize in machine learning.

As has been widely reported, Apple filed for an "iWatch" trademark in Japan last month listed in a category for products such as a handheld computer or watch.

MobiHealthNews last touched on the Apple smart watch in July's podcast when Misfit Wearables CEO Sonny Vu and Basis Science CEO Jef Holove addressed the potential entry of the Apple smart watch into the crowded wearables market. To hear their take on Apple's expected iWatch, you can listen to the MobiHealthNews podcast.


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