PHILADELPHIA – When Apple released the iOS 11 update this fall, it introduced several features that will impact the home health care space.
“We are carrying around in our pockets what would have been considered supercomputers 10 years ago,” said Ben Moser, director of integrated strategy at CloudMine, a HIPAA-compliant health cloud provider, in a recent webinar that delved into what iOS 11 means to health care. “Not just the phone, but the technologies around it, will power those connected health experiences of the future.”
The update to the operating system includes ARKit, a mobile platform for developing augmented reality apps on iOS. This feature allows developers to superimpose artificial graphics onto real or live images and could be applied to rehabilitation procedures, learning experiences or emergency response, said Ben DiFrancesco, an iOS engineer at CloudMine.
Another feature of iOS 11 is Face ID, a biometric recognition system that uses a set of sensors, cameras and a dot projector to create a detailed 3D map of the face, and is used to unlock the iPhone X. Moser said the Face ID feature could be used with the phone’s True Depth camera for enhanced telehealth experiences and to track for minor changes in a user’s health.
“Face ID presents great opportunities to do incredible things in the health care space,” he said.
DiFrancesco said one of the most exciting Apple products released in the fall is the newest iteration of the Apple Watch, which can pull and push health data, especially heart data, to and from the Cloud. The results of a recent Apple/Stanford University heart study show wearables and a multi-task deep learning algorithm are good predictors of hypertension and sleep apnea.
“The proof is in the pudding with this,” said DiFrancesco. “They’re proving the Apple Watch can be a reliable medical tracking device.”