President Barack Obama is considering using an Apple Watch because of its fitness capabilities, according to a recent interview with Re/Code Cofounder Kara Swisher.
“I don’t have a Fitbit yet, but I work out hard,” he told Swisher. “Word is these Apple Watches might be a good companion for my workouts. So I’m gonna see, I’m gonna test it out."
Obama continued: "I don’t want to give Tim Cook too big of a plug here until I’ve actually seen the product, but he tells me it’s pretty good.”
The Apple Watch, which will track movement through a built-in accelerometer and heart rate through optical sensors, is expected to ship in April.
Obama has been a tech savvy president since entering office in 2008. At the time, he fought with his handlers to keep his BlackBerry even after he moved into the White House. Since then, the president has given digital health a nod a handful of times over the years.
During his 2011 state of the union address, Obama mentioned mobile health while discussing the need to increase coverage of high speed wireless networks to 98 percent of all Americans within the next five years.
“This isn’t just about — (applause) — this isn’t about faster Internet or fewer dropped calls,” the president said at the time. “It’s about connecting every part of America to the digital age. It’s about a rural community in Iowa or Alabama where farmers and small business owners will be able to sell their products all over the world. It’s about a firefighter who can download the design of a burning building onto a handheld device; a student who can take classes with a digital textbook; or a patient who can have face-to-face video chats with her doctor.”
Then in 2013, First Lady Michelle Obama personally invited Dr. Peter Hudson, the co-founder and CEO of iTriage, to sit in her viewing box as “a distinguished guest” for Obama’s state of the union address.
In an email to MobiHealthNews at the time, Hudson said that he was seated with Ms. Obama, Dr. Biden, Apple CEO Tim Cook, and Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber. “President and First Lady Obama included iTriage in the esteemed list of guests to underscore the importance of the seven priorities outlined in his inaugural address, including innovation, reducing debt and job creation,” Hudson wrote.
After the Apple Watch launches in April, we'll find out which wearable is truly the "first" wearable of the US, or FWOTUS.