Apple's upcoming iWatch to focus on health and fitness

Apple looks certain to launch its iWatch (or whatever it will be called) later this year and when it does, health will be a key part of it. Your health, that is.

According to 9 to 5 Mac, Apple will launch a sensor-packed iWatch which will integrate closely with iOS 8. But one part of the new operating system will be key to the smartwatch, something called Healthbook.

This is software that monitors and stores fitness statistics, such as steps taken, calories burned and miles walked. It will also be able to manage and track weight loss and check your vital signs, blood pressure, heart rate, glucose levels and hydration levels. All of which sounds like a doctor in your pocket. It will even be able to remind you to take medication.

The problem with much of that is the iPhone isn't currently capable of tracking it, but a sensor-packed smartwatch could do and be a quick way to access that data. With iOS 8 shipping this year, it's likely that the iWatch will be shown off alongside the new OS.

It's an interesting idea and one that seems to have some weight behind it. There is a chance that Apple could build the functionality into iOS 8 and offer access to third parties until the watch is ready to go, but it's more likely that Apple will want a version the watch ready to show the world that it means business in the rapidly growing health and fitness sector.

Of course, the iWatch isn't going to be a one trick pony. Mapping has been mentioned as a possible feature and we would be very surprised if message notifications and music weren't included too. It might even tell the time? Who knows.

However, one thing being talked up by the New York Times over the weekend for the watch is wireless charging, which you feel would also be an inevitable upgrade for a future iPhone too. According to that publication, the watch would charge via a mat, hooking up via magnetic induction and without a cord in sight. There's also the possibility of solar charging or charging via movement, which would be even more useful, but unlikely for version one of the watch. it also adds that the finished version of the iWatch is likely to be a curved design (like the one mocked up here), rather than looking like a traditional timepiece.

All interesting news. Now can we please see a proper photo of one?

Sources: 9 to 5 Mac and New York Times

Image mock up by Thomas Bogner

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