updated 10:45 am EST, Fri January 31, 2014
Masimo responsible for oxygen-, pulse-monitoring tech
Apple has hired on Michael O'Reilly -- Masimo's former chief medical officer and EVP of Medical Affairs -- in what is likely an attempt at bolstering its iWatch team, reports say. O'Reilly is said to have actually left for Apple in July, but news only leaked to the public last week. Late Thursday, Masimo said it "could not dispute" the claims, effectively confirming them.
Masimo is responsible for developing a number of oximetry devices, most notably the iSpO2 Pulse Oximeter. The product connects to an iPhone, and reads pulse and oxygen saturation data from a person's finger, processing it through a dedicated app. Apple is believed to want health and fitness sensors built into the iWatch, which would make O'Reilly's experience invaluable.
The company has already hired on a number of people with experience in monitoring technology for glucose levels, blood chemistry, vein location, and heart/breath rates. That suggests that the iWatch may keep track of more info than most dedicated fitness trackers, in addition to serving conventional smartwatch functions like receiving notifications or controlling music playback.