What you need to know
- Apple engineers have filed a new patent focused on sleep tracking.
- The patent details bedding that could track sleep and other vital signs.
- Apple still has yet to bring sleep tracking to the Apple Watch.
Apple has been rumored to be bringing sleep tracking to the Apple Watch for years now. After the company acquired sleep tracking company Beddit in 2017, it seemed that it was only a matter of time that Apple would be bringing its own sleep tracking software to the Apple Watch.
Well, its been three years and the world is still waiting. While there is a good chance that the feature will debut in the next version of watchOS when Apple takes the virtual stage at WWDC in June, a new patent suggests that the company's ambitions with sleep tracking go much further than Apple Watch.
Reported by AppleInsider, a new patent filed with the United States Patent & Trademark Office details the possibility of bedding that could track not only sleep but other vital health signs.
The 'Vital Signs Monitoring System' patent is designed to monitor the quality of a user's sleep without having to wear a monitoring device, such as an Apple Watch. According to the patent, this product could also monitor other vital signs such as temperature. The system could then, for example, connect to a smart thermostat with HomeKit and adjust the temperature inside the house to the optimal sleeping conditions.
"Based on the measured values, the monitoring system can analyze the user's sleep, provide feedback and suggestions to the user, and/or can adjust or control the environmental conditions to improve the user's sleep. The monitoring system can further be capable of analyzing the sleep of the user(s) without directly contacting or attaching uncomfortable probes to the user(s) and without having to analyze the sleep in an unknown environment (e.g., a medical facility)."
Patents are obtained by Apple's engineers on a frequent basis, so there is no guarantee that this is a product that is actually being developed or will ever be sold. Also, as the company has still not added sleep tracking to the Apple Watch yet, we can imagine it will be a while before a product on this level would see a release. Still, it is exciting to think of the potential products Apple could bring to the health space.