Apple ResearchKit Will Use App Data to Beat Diseases

By Gerald Lynch on at

Your iPhone is now a medical research tool. Apple has just revealed ResearchKit, a new app companion to the existing HealthKit hub. Pulling in data from a range of apps, participants can send medical data directly to researchers through the ResearchKit hub, potentially letting doctors tap into medical details collated from millions of people.

Kicking off with five partnered apps targeting specific diseases (Parkinsons, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, asthma and breast cancer), they will each offer a range of tests that collect data for individual disease metrics. Speaking specifically about the Parkinsons application, an iPhone screen-tapping test was detailed that can measure tremors, as well as a vocal test that measures similar discrepancies in a sufferer's voice, alongside accelerometer-measured gait and balance tests.

All tests will be opt-in and require explicit consent, while your medical records will be kept private from Apple's eyes.

Launching today, Apple's ResearchKit will be open source, meaning you could eventually see this hitting Android devices too.

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