What you need to know
- Apple's Research app is available in iOS 13.2 beta.
- The app will allow users to enroll in three important studies.
- Apple has previously introduced ResearchKit and CareKit.
Along with Apple's Deep Fusion technology, a new Research app has arrived in the first beta for iOS 13.2. Announced at WWDC, the Research app could have big implications in the health sector.
The Research app sees Apple partner with leading academic and research institutions in an effort to democratize how medical research is conducted, according to Apple. If you decide to participate, the information you provide could lead to medical breakthroughs.
Here are the new studies found in the Research app:
Apple Women's Health Study: In partnership with Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the NIH's National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), Apple has created the first long-term study of this scale focused on menstrual cycles and gynecological conditions. This study will inform screening and risk assessment of conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), infertility, osteoporosis, pregnancy and menopausal transition.
Apple Heart and Movement Study: Apple is partnering with Brigham and Women's Hospital and the American Heart Association on a comprehensive study of how heart rate and mobility signals — like walking pace and flights of stairs climbed — relate to hospitalizations, falls, heart health and quality of life in order to promote healthy movement and improved cardiovascular health.
Apple Hearing Study: Alongside the University of Michigan, Apple is examining factors that impact hearing health. The Apple Hearing Health Study is the first of its kind to collect data over time in order to understand how everyday sound exposure can impact hearing. The study data will also be shared with the World Health Organization (WHO) as a contribution toward its Make Listening Safe initiative.
The goal with these studies is to gather more information that Apple says could create the next generation of innovative health products.
In a privacy statement about the Research app, Apple said the studies will give users control over what information is shared if they choose to enroll. Any information that is collected or accessed will be stored in encrypted form and protected with a passcode on your iOS device.
The Research app comes in addition to ResearchKit and CareKit, the former of which was used to create the Apple Heart Study, the largest study of its kind. The study examined atrial fibrillation "to provide validation for the irregular rhythm notification feature on Apple Watch."
Research app should arrive when iOS 13.2 is released.