Sunday, June 13, 2010

Apple filed for patents in the mHealth space. I wonder if we develop our own products here, we have to pay license to Apple?

mHealth News: Five mHealth patent applications from Apple


Sure, the latest patent application that Apple filed for an embedded heart rate sensor received a ton of largely unwarranted hype, but Apple has busily applied for and received (some) patents related to wireless health, biometrics and fitness.

Here are five Apple patents we have tracked during the past year, including the much-talked-about heart rate authentication one:

Smart garment, April 15, 2010: A sensor authenticated to a garment transfers information, either wirelessly or wired, to an external data processing device. Such information includes location information, physiometric data of the individual wearing the garment, garment performance and wear data (when the garment is an athletic shoe, for example). The external data processing device can be portable digital media players that are, in turn, in wireless communication with a server computer or other wireless devices. More

Activity monitoring systems and methods, March 31, 2009: An activity monitor, comprises housing for attachment to a person; at least one accelerometer disposed within the housing; and a processor disposed within the housing, for processing signals from the accelerometer to assess activity of the person. A method assesses activity of a person, including: sensing acceleration at a first location on the person; processing the acceleration, over time, to assess activity of the person; and wirelessly communicating information indicative of the activity to a second location. More

The patent seems to be a bit generic, a wireless embedded sensor that's probably being sewn into the garment, and then transmit data to a wireless portable media player or a wireless base station. That's seems to be any kind of sensor that captures data, transmit data over ZigBee, Bluetooth, WiFi, RF to another device for further processing. I don't know why these kinds of patents even exist, with the level of information available online and to a lot of people, i don't think an idea patent is still relevant. It should be based execution, and not who gets the idea first. Since really, i don't think there's any special idea with what Apple is trying to patent here. I wonder who applied for the patent to have a tablet form touch based wireless mobile device?

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