Apple Watch Series 7 could pack game-changing blood sugar sensor

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Apple Watch Series 6
This year's Apple Watch upgrade could have a pretty massive new feature.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

This year’s Apple Watch upgrade will reportedly add another potentially transformative medical feature: a blood sugar sensor.

That’s according to a new report from ET News, which says both Apple and Samsung will bake the feature into their respective smartwatches — the Apple Watch Series 7 and Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 — later in 2021.

The report, which is published in Korean, focuses predominantly on Samsung. It claims that Samsung’s tech will be a “no-blood sampling method” that detects blood glucose levels using an optical sensor. This could be incredibly useful for diabetics, although it would also have other applications.

It mentions only that Apple is working on something similar and has filed related patents. The company is now supposedly proving the tech’s reliability and stability, prior to introducing the feature later this year.

A potential game-changer

Apple has reportedly been working on this problem for a while. According to a 2017 CNBC report, Cupertino had (or has) a “secret group of biomedical engineers developing sensors to monitor blood sugar levels,” although nothing yet has been released.

At this year’s CES, a Japanese company called Quantum Operation talked up a prototype wearable it claims can do much the same thing. Quantum’s device supposedly uses a miniature spectrometer to scan blood in the wrist for biomarkers as a way to reveal glucose levels. The company says an accurate blood sugar data scan takes just 20 seconds to complete.

Whether Apple (and Samsung and Quantum) can pull this off remains to be seen. Noninvasive blood sugar monitoring is something of a holy grail for monitoring technology. An estimated one in 10 Americans is diabetic, and that number continues to rise If this report is accurate, 2021 could be a massive game-changing year in this regard.

Source: ET News