Apple Patent Reveals iPhone and Apple Watch Could Monitor Respiratory Health

Apple has been granted a new health-focused patent that could bring advanced respiratory analysis features to future iPhones and Apple Watches. The patent details technology to assess lung function using the devices’ existing sensors.

The patent describes methods to monitor breathing patterns and identify potential issues like airflow obstruction. This could benefit users with conditions such as asthma or COPD.

One approach outlined involves using the iPhone’s optical sensor to track a user’s chest movements during breathing. Algorithms would then interpret the motion to determine respiratory characteristics.

Another method discussed attaches an Apple Watch to the chest area via a dedicated adhesive sticker. The watch can then directly monitor breathing mechanics from this vantage point.

Currently, clinical respiratory assessments rely on specialized devices like spirometers. But Apple’s patented tech could enable more convenient tracking and surfacing of respiratory trends.

The company has steadily expanded the health monitoring capabilities of its wearables and phones. Apple Watch already measures VO2 max and blood oxygen levels, for example. More advanced respiratory analysis would further position Apple devices as vital health tools.

Apple-Monitor-Respiratory-Health

Of course, there’s no guarantee Apple will ever implement this patented technology in a consumer product. But the company often explores innovative health features through patents years before they debut.

If integrated, these new respiratory analysis techniques could provide users with valuable insights and allow easier sharing of breathing data with healthcare providers. As wearables gain medical capabilities, Apple aims to keep pushing possibilities.

EDITOR PICKED: Apple’s latest patent: A smart ring that puts control at your fingertips

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