Apple studies integrating biometric health sensors in AirPods
Apple’s Machine Learning Research team has published a paper, spotted by Patently Apple, that hints at the integration of biometric health sensors within sports-focused headphones.
In particular, the paper highlights the benefits of headphone-based sensors and the intrusiveness of traditional sensors like thermistors, respiratory gauge transducers, and acoustic sensors.
“While [they] provide the most accurate estimation of a person’s breathing patterns, they are intrusive and may not be comfortable for everyday use,” the research paper reads.
On the other hand, Apple explains, wearable headphones are relatively cheap, as well as substantially more accessible, comfortable, and aesthetically acceptable.
As part of the new research, the Cupertino-based firm managed to obtain a variety of biometric data simply using microphone-enabled, near-range headphones, and AirPods in particular.
“These particular wearables were selected because they are owned by millions and utilized in a wide array of contexts, from speaking on the phone to listening to music during exercise,” the paper explains.
According to the researchers, the findings “show promise for further development of a respiratory health tool with a larger study cohort.”