(Photo : Pixabay/PhotoMIX-Company) Apple AirPods
Apple is pushing for more health features on its devices, and now it is reported that the tech giant wants to add health benefits to its AirPods.
The tech giant wants the AirPods to be used beyond listening to music and taking calls. A new report claims that the company is exploring new health and wellness features for its future wireless earbuds.
Apple Wants Health Features on AirPods
According to The Wall Street Journal, Apple is currently doing research and studying the potential for its device to take a bigger role in monitoring the user's health.
While the new features are not expected to be available until 2022, three main features are currently being tested.
The AirPods is being tested to check the user's temperature, monitor their posture, and serve as a hearing aid or hearing enhancement.
The first two features are straightforward, as the tech giant could update the accelerometers already built-in to current AirPods to more accurately track the user's body position and posture, while new temperature sensors would make it simple to get accurate readings of the user's core temperature for inside their ear.
However, the more complicated task will be getting the device certified as a hearing aid, as the current regulations in the United States require medically-approved hearing aids to be sold by licensed hearing specialists.
Although, there is upcoming legislation that will change the restrictions, and it may go into effect next year, according to 9to5Mac.
Also, the current AirPods have five-hour battery life. It is unlikely that future devices would give the kind of all-day battery life that people with hearing loss would need from a dedicated hearing aid, which means Apple may be forced to focus more on giving enhanced hearing capabilities instead.
While the idea of expanding the device's duties outside music may seem impossible, expanded health features have turned into a fast-growing trend among device makers.
Bose has been granted Food and Drug Administration or FDA clearance for its SoundControl Hearing Aids.
Amazfit has already made earbuds that can track the user's posture and heart rate with its Powerbuds Pro.
Even Samsung is currently exploring the same feature. Samsung's head audio engineer Han-Gil Moon told Gizmodo that in the future, the company hopes to leverage artificial intelligence to improve the voice detection and ambient sound-enhancing capabilities on wireless earbuds.
Apple on Health Features
Given the success of the Apple Watch, which has succeeded due to its wide range of health and fitness tracking features, it is clear that Apple is looking to expand those capabilities to more devices, including the iPhone.
Apple is even expected to get more health features in 2022, including blood glucose tracking.
The iPhone is being evaluated to see if it can detect certain patterns related to mental health and cognitive impairment.
Earlier this year, Apple launched the iOS 15 update, and it gives the users the ability to share their data with their family members and doctors and get insights into the health trends of their friends and family.
Also, the new tools in iOS 15 can be used to identify and understand the changes in a user's health data.
Written by Sophie Webster