Monday, March 31, 2008

iPhone as lifestyle companion -- sounds really really familiar

Via TechMeme, examines recent Apple patent applications and discovers clues that the iPhone might be positioned as a "lifestyle companion":

Turns out, that Apple is thinking how to make an iPhone into a full “Lifestyle companion” device, that can monitor your health condition, act as a fitness trainer and diet consultant, suggest daily routines dependent on your occupation and personal health hazards, and even shape your shopping habits.

And all this on the same familiar iPhone platform .

The key here is modular approach, incorporation of multiple sensors in the iPhone itself, it’s accessories and specialized software and content available through the iTunes.

Let's extend this a bit. You take a friendly mobile computing and communications platform, modularly add sensors, and use it to continuously monitor status in a variety of ways. You can (theoretically) stream this information to a repository so that you can review aggregated metrics or zoom in to see patterns and correlations at certain points. ("Seems like I feel lousy every spring at this time. I wonder if that correlates with high mold count?" "Do I eat less or more when I exercise regularly?") You can (theoretically) make this information available to your health care providers, your diet and exercise buddies, your Facebook friends, your biographer.

It starts to sound a lot like the MyLifeBits project that Microsoft has been running the last several years. Except that Apple has perhaps figured out how to make it marketable and specifically useful to average consumers.

iPhone. Your Lifestyle Companion » Unwired View
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