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Apple in talks with insurance companies about HealthKit

updated 04:37 pm EDT, Thu August 21, 2014

Tech could be used to keep premiums, expenditures down

Apple is talking with at least two insurance companies about its HealthKit platform in iOS 8, according to Bloomberg. These include Humana and UnitedHealth, the latter being the US' biggest such firm. It's not yet clear what the parties might have in mind.

Because the Affordable Care Act allows insurance companies to spend up to 30 percent of premium revenue on rewards for healthy behavior, however, they may be interested in tracking HealthKit data as a means of encouraging people to exercise more, improve their heart rate, and/or lose weight. While that might result in reduced costs and cheaper premiums, it could still prove controversial, since insurers might theoretically use the same data to raise rates for customers engaged in riskier behaviors. The accuracy of health and fitness accessories can also sometimes be questionable.

HealthKit and iOS 8 should formally launch next month. Apple is expected to join the fitness accessory market itself with the iWatch, which in addition to syncing with iPhones should have a number of onboard sensors. That device is anticipated sometime this fall.

by MacNN Staff



  1. prl99

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: 03-24-09

    They keep talking about inaccurate health-related accessories yet I still have my blood pressure and heart rate measured by a nurse looking at an analog dial and their watch. Close is good enough for them so why are people concerned with the accuracy of digital accessories? If Apple can design some fairly accurate sensors and makes them available for a reasonable price, why shouldn't we give it a try? You can't come up with the best product without trying a variety of designs. Remember how huge and slow the first computer was? We just have to start and see what happens. I'd rather have Apple designing things than Samsung or google.

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