At Apple’s annual WWDC, everyone is excited about the release of iOS 8 and the iPhone 6. But lots of iPhone fans are more excited about the new HealthKit app, which everyone thought would be called Healthbook (according to rumors). What is HealthKit? Here’s what we know so far…
1. HealthKit is the New App in iOS 8
The image above leaked earlier this year in March, and is allegedly a sneak peek at the iOS 8 interface, including the icon for Healthkit.
2. HealthKit Might Look Like the Passbook App
In the weeks and months leading up to WWDC, 9to5mac revealed how the Healthbook app looks and works. Healthbook’s interface supposedly pulls from how the Passbook app looked in ios7. Because 9to5mac has such an incredible record getting the inside scoop on Apple and Mac products, the announcements and screenshots caused a lot of excitement.
3. HealthKit Can Track a Huge Amount of Health Data
The New York Times reported that in the early stages, the app will use data from third-party hardware. The Healthkit demonstration at WWDC confirmed that this was an important feature of the Healthkit and Health apps. This ability to work with other devices and apps will, according to inside reports, enable HealthKit to track a huge range of health and fitness data including:
* heart rate
* blood pressure
* physical activity
* blood sugar
* respiratory rate
* oxygen saturation
* hydration levels
4. HealthKit Works with Leading Health Institutions
One of the most exciting things about the Healthkit app and the Health app are the ways they work with with other apps, hospitals, and health companies. The Healthkit wants to give you a “single comprehensive picture of your health situation.” According to the Healthkit demonstration at WWDC, Nike is integrating its app to work with the Healthkit app, the Mayo Clinic is working with Apple to measure blood pressure and connect doctors and patients, and the app will connect with leading hospitals so that patients can easily share information with their doctors.
The CEO of the Mayo Clinic said this:
We believe Apple’s HealthKit will revolutionize how the health industry interacts with people. We are proud to be at the forefront of this innovative technology with the Mayo Clinic App.
There wasn’t much information about some of the leaked unbelievable features of the new Health app, which we thought would include blood and hydration tracking. According to earlier reports, the new Health app would be able to monitor blood pressure, blood sugar, and oxygen levels in blood. Apple has been making news in the past year by hiring big names and brains in the health and fitness industries including Michael O’Reilly. O’Reilly’s company specializes in blood oximetry technology and non-invasive health monitoring.
5. HealthKit is Probably Leading up to iWatch
According to inside sources and to Apple’s meetings with the FDA, Apple is entering the wearables market in 2014. We expect that iWatch will contain built-in sensors and will rely on the iPhone’s movement tracking abilities. We have been expecting this since Apple hired Jay Blahnik, a Nike Fuelband developer, last year.
Apple CEO Tim Cook is a fan of the Fuelband and actually uses it himself. This is what he said at D11 last year:
You know I wear this, it’s the FuelBand. I think Nike did a great job with this. It’s for a specific area, it’s integrated well with iOS. There are lots of gadgets, wearables, in this space now…there’s lots of things to solve in this space, but it’s an area where it’s ripe for exploration.