Why you’ll wear an Apple Watch to keep your job

“With Apple Watch, Cupertino has taken a leadership position in the mass-market for connected health, and its latest patent shows how machine intelligence could save lives,” Jonny Evans writes for Computerworld.

“Apple’s latest filing describes a way in which an Apple Watch can constantly monitor a wearer’s heartbeat, warning them of impending heart attack,” Evans writes. “The patent isn’t confined to heart attacks, it could potentially monitor numerous forms of crisis, including things like car accidents, muggings or anything else the built-in accelerometer, heart monitor, microphone and other sensors can detect.”

“While the existence of the patent does not mean the company will launch the service, it is a solution that’s bang on industry expectation, with many analysts predicting millions of workers will soon be required to use these monitoring technologies to keep their jobs,” Evans writes. “Why will this happen? Health insurers are already introducing insurance packages in which use of solutions like these is encouraged in exchange for lower premiums. Company health insurance policies will also see this introduced, meaning wearing of such things will become part of what you need to do to keep your job.”

Much more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Apple Watch is positioned perfectly in terms of both functionality and style.

Every company and insurer should offer such programs.

As we wrote last September:

Can’t happen soon enough. Those who want to sit around, munching chips, while encasing themselves in growing rolls of fat should pay more for the costs brought on by their heart attacks, gout, diabetes, strokes, asthma, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, and cancer treatments.

Next we need a way for Apple Watch to detect smokers and charge them more, too. People who make the effort to be healthy, regardless of whether they actually are lucky enough to be healthy or not*, should pay less for their health insurance as they tax the system far less than those who are sedentary, obese and/or smoke. Just as life insurance costs more for those who live unhealthy lifestyles, their health insurance should cost more, too. (Life insurers should utilize Apple Watches in much the same way.)

*If a person is obese for reasons beyond a sedentary, unhealthy lifestyle, who is actively trying to be healthy as shown by their Apple Watch, but other conditions prevent fat loss (Hypothyroidism, Cushing’s syndrome, hormonal imbalances, Syndrome X, medications, etc.) they should get a lower rate than those who are simply leading sedentary, unhealthy lifestyles. Most cases of obesity are due to sedentary lifestyles and consuming more calories than required, not medical conditions.

Furthermore, people should have every right to sit around eating chips and smoking until they drop dead (unfortunately, it’s rarely that clean; they often first tax the health system to a great degree by developing diabetes, cancers, banging off a couple of heart attacks, having a stroke here and there, etc. before they finally make their exit) and insurance companies should have every right to charge them more since, overall, they cost far more to take care of due to their poor choice(s) which raises costs for those who are trying to take care of themselves and therefore cost the system far less.

If you’re fat because you sit around too much and take in more calories than you can possible burn off by sitting on your ass all day, don’t be offended. Either keep on as you’re doing and pay more to cover your increased costs or put down the chips, stand up and get moving! (You can thank us later by continuing to visit during the 10-20 extra years you’ll get by following our latter advice.)

SEE ALSO:
Share your fitness data for an Apple Watch – or cash – March 2, 2016
Tim Cook hints Apple might build a health device – November 10, 2015
Apple should double down on Apple Watch’s health sensors, battery life, and waterproofing – October 2, 2015
Health insurer will charge more for lazy people, less for active people, based on Apple Watch sensors – September 18, 2015

22 Comments

  1. Here comes the Nanny-watch. Going out for some binge drinking….no, no, no, we’ll be watching that heart rate….and a few other things.

    In the end, humanity becomes simply data to the master.

      1. Not if enforcement has their wishes granted. They will need to tap into all blood streams to make sure people aren’t harming themselves with illegal substances. If you want to drive on public roads then your blood content reporting device will communicate with road sensors and alert the authorities when appropriate.

        Municipalities will lose huge sources of revenues from decreases in driving under the influence of alcohol, but it will save hundreds of thousands of lives ever year. They could make up for the shortfall by arresting people with marijuana in their bloodstream. Marijuana stays in the bloodstream for months, but since the “high” effect only lasts a few hours it could be challenged in court if the perpetrator can spend thousands of dollars in lawyer and court fees. If you do any other illegal drug or can’t afford an attorney then you are screwed.

  2. This is one of the few times when I disagree with MDN’s take. You shouldn’t make healthy people who aren’t constantly exercising and eating right. Just because someone who is obese can’t control their weight doesn’t mean they should pay less. Intention is irrelevant; the end result is the only thing that matters.

    1. Lifestyle choices affect life expectancy regardless of the body type and weight. If you eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly, you will live longer than if you didn’t ear well and exercise. This is true regardless of whether you weigh 70kg or 175kg.

      Therefore, insurance companies have every right to reward those who are making an effort to extend their own life, regardless of whether they are already skinny or are obese.

      The percentage of people whose obesity is caused by an underlying medical disorder is rather small. Majority of the obese population in the developed countries are that way due to their lifestyle choices (diet and lack of physical activity). If there is a way to motivate them to change those, it is worth exploring. If it doesn’t work, at least those who do make the effort are rewarded and don’t have to shoulder the health costs of the care required for those who don’t.

      1. Agree in principle that those with good habits should pay less than those with not so good habits.

        But food distribution companies bear a good deal of responsibility as well. For example, milk manufacturers put in more sugar in zero percent fat milk than they do in whole milk. They do that because fat free milk without the sugar would “taste like cardboard.” They advertise fat free as bent healthy, when in fact fat in moderation is perfectly healthy for people to consume. It is sugar that is the killer and we consume many way too much. Anyone ever notice that sugar never has the daily recommended percentage on US food labels? Anyone ever wonder why that is? Hint: sugar lobby.

        1. You are absolutely right. Food industry (especially processed and fast food) bears the largest share of responsibility for the obesity problem. The obvious challenge is confronting and fighting this immensely powerful industry. That is obviously not possible for ordinary consumers and smaller consumer interest groups.

          There is no doubt that the struggle against the powerful food industry can only be won if enough people join in. Meanwhile, these kinds of steps, where consumers are individually rewarded for making lifestyle changes, might well chip away at the industry.

          Whatever gets the end result, which is longer life.

          1. I’m pretty sure I never picked up 500 calories walking by a McDonald’s. I did gain the calories when I shoved the food down my gullet. Blame the food companies, blame the fork but don’t blame the consumer? There is such a thing as a grocery store that sells broccoli.

            1. You are technically correct in that a person is responsible for what they eat, but studies had found that most of today’s fast food products have some addiction-inducing properties; in other words, once you walk into that Mcdonalds for the first time, (for whatever reason), you may be compelled to go back, which would be fine if the food there was actually healthy, which it isn’t. The most addictive choices on their menu are actually the ones with highest dose of saturated fats, sugars, total calorie count and with the poorest variety of ingredients.

              So, yes, while the choice is entirely individual, for those who are poor, it is a challenge being able to afford anything better than fast food, and it becomes difficult to break the habit, once it forms.

  3. I disagree with MDN’s take. You’re all for privacy from the government, but are willingly to give it away to your employer?? And what about compensation for on-the-job stress and work requirements that lead to an un-healthy lifestyles??

    1. I agree! Talk about hypocrisy!

      For Apple’s fight against the government because of privacy concerns but then also for companies and the government collecting data on how active you are? Don’t for a second think it will stop there. Big brother will be able to track your every move!!!!

      This is MORE intrusive then a back door into your iPhone and anyone that can’t see that is a FOOL !!!!!!!!

  4. Once again MDN is as tone deaff as the government. The perceived health benefits of a smart device are only benefits if the user controls the data that this device creates.

    Passively collecting health dfata of citizens is:
    a) an invasion of privacy
    b) not relevant to the health profile of the evast majority of users.

    so that the dimwits here get it, this is called Eugenics.

    1. Not quite sure how on earth could this possibly be associated with the eugenics (in the meaning that vast majority of people associate it with, the Nazi Germany efforts and similar).

      First, nobody here is suggesting mandatory collection of personal health data. The idea is to offer discounts in exchange for providing data. The health insurer can thereby gather more precise information regarding the health of the person they are insuring, thereby increasing the accuracy of their risk assessment (and therefore reducing cost of that insurance).

      Millions of people are already engaged in this type of relationship with large corporations: surrendering private data for access to special discounts. A loyalty programme in your local supermarket does exactly this. They know your fairly intimate details (how often you buy condoms, Kotex/Tampax, if you suffer from seasonal allergies, how much dairy / meat / poultry / vegetables you consume…). You get exclusive discounts for giving up that privacy. Health insurence would be no different.

  5. The minute any employer (or company for whom I contract) requires me to buy and use (or even use during non work hours if they buy it) is the minute I quit that relationship. PERIOD.

    The last time I had something from an employer that ruled what I wore during non working hours was AFR 35-10 well over 40 years ago. (The new AFI has almost zero off duty restrictions on what a person can wear in civilian attire.)

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