According to documents seen by The Wall Street Journal, prototypes of AirPods with temperature sensors for monitoring a wearer’s core body temperature from inside the ear are being developed. The report noted that these in-ear temperature sensors could work in tandem with a temperature sensor in the Apple Watch Series 8.
The health-focused AirPods reportedly also use motion sensors to monitor a wearer’s posture and alert them when they are slouching in an effort to improve posture.
Apple released its “Conversation Boost” feature for AirPods Pro last week, which boosts the volume and clarity of people directly in front of the wearer. It is not clear if the new hearing aid functions being explored by Apple are an extension of Conversation Boost or a wholly different hearing aid-specific feature. AirPods already feature, microphones, an amplifier, and a processor, providing the bedrock for hearing aid functionality.
AirPods may not be suitable as hearing aids for some sufferers of hearing loss since they do not have an all-day battery life, but the report noted that an expansion of FDA regulations for a new class of hearing aids, targeting mild to moderate hearing moss, that is expected next year could pave the way for Apple to explicitly market AirPods as hearing aids.
AirPods have been rumored to feature health-monitoring functions for some time, even with Apple executives hinting at the possibility. While previous reports have only speculated on the health features that could theoretically come to AirPods, The Wall Street Journal‘s report is the first clarification of the specific features Apple is reportedly exploring.
Individuals said to be familiar with Apple’s plans told the The Wall Street Journal that the AirPods with health features are not expected to launch in 2022, and may never be released.
This article, "Future AirPods Could Monitor Body Temperature and Posture, and Work as a Hearing Aid" first appeared on MacRumors.com
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