Welcome to And finally, your round-up of stories that you might have missed in wearables this week.
It was all about the hearables this week as Microsoft’s Surface Earbuds were unveiled at its Surface event. New Apple AirPods appeared in the latest iOS beta while second gen Google Pixel Buds are on the way. Elsewhere, Rebble is bringing apps to Pebble owners and Garmin unveiled a new luxury Marq watch.
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We saved up a few more wearable tidbits for you to tuck into. You can check all of the big news from this week in our dedicated news section.
Apple patent points to smart clothing plans
Apple appears to be exploring the prospect of building smart garments based on a patent that has recently emerged.
According to the patent filing, Apple is considering creating a stretchable band that can take health measurements including ECG readings and blood pressure measurements. It seems the tech could be integrated into fabrics.
There are a range of potential applications in the patent, and details of how the band could be strengthened if needed, to stay rigid, and communicate with other devices wirelessly. With Google’s Project Jacquard back from the dead, could we be looking at the start of a new golden age for smart clothing?
Fitbit partners with Health2Sync to fight diabetes in Japan and Taiwan
Back to the here and now, though, and Fitbit has announced that its health data can now be synced to the Health2Sync app in Japan and Taiwan.
Health2Sync is an app specifically for managing diabetes, and has some 360,000 users between the two territories, so there’s no downside at all to Fitbit allowing its data to feed into the app.
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It should give users a more rounded view of their health, alongside logged blood glucose levels and other metrics. In particular, Health2Sync has drawn attention to the benefits of using Fitbit’s best-in-class sleep tracking to help make positive lifestyle changes.
A wearable that can help Parkinson’s sufferers keep moving
The creators of wearable health solution Path Finder have been awarded a grant of over $1 million to continue the work it’s been carrying out to help Parkinson’s sufferers maintain their mobility.
Path Finder is comprised of wearable laser pointers that strap to a user’s shoes to give them a visual indication of where they’re walking, something that’s been shown to help people suffering from Parkinson’s avoid falling and continue on their paths.
The Danish company, Walk With Path, was awarded the money as the winner of the Horizon Prize for Social Innovation, an initiative by the European Union. It will use the money to grow the distribution side of its business, to get the Path Finder to more people.
Apple Watch became more about health when it started saving lives
Apple’s increasing focus on the health monitoring abilities of its smartwatch has been clear to see in the latest iterations of its Watch.
In an interview with The Independent, we got a sense of why it started to make that shift. Apple’s chief operating officer Jeff Williams revealed that Apple began to receive letters and emails from people who didn’t know they had heart issues until their Apple Watch made it clear. He added that this became a major motivation for the company.