Non-Invasive Glucose Monitoring in the Works at Apple?

8/27/18
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On Thursday, August 23rd, Apple filed a patent for what looks like non-invasive glucose monitoring technology. Is the tech giant (finally) developing non-invasive glucose monitoring technology? Here’s what that might look like.

Tech blogs following the nitty-gritty details of patent applications pulled out details that hint at what Apple might be working on. The patent application for “Reference switch architectures for noncontact sensing of substances” describes a system designed to measure the concentration of a particular substance in a sample using certain wavelengths of light.

This new invention uses complicated technology to address potential accuracy issues. Among other factors, the patent application includes plans for specialized light emitters, filters, beamsplitters, and short-wavelength infrared detectors.

While it might sound like science fiction, it has long been speculated that Apple might be working towards incorporating non-invasive glucose sensing technology into the Apple Watch. The patent did not specify what substances might be measured by the proposed system, but it has fueled the glucose monitoring hypothesis. Past rumors even mentioned that CEO Tim Cook was at one point personally testing a prototype.

As of yet, this technology has not been wildly successful. One related technique called Raman spectroscopy was being used in developing a product called the C8 MediSensor. It ultimately failed to produce a working product. After the failure of the MediSensor, Apple reported hired multiple former employees of C8.

Will the next generation Apple Watch be able to read blood glucose levels by shooting light beams into our wrists? Stay tuned!


Read more Type 1 diabetes news coverage from Beyond Type 1 here.