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Apple Inc. Has Been Making Medical Devices For Years

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Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) makes the vast majority of its money from just one product-the iPhone. The firm’s monocultural revenue model is something that has worried investors for some years, and CEO Tim Cook has tried multiple different strategies to try to solve the core problem.

As we head toward the launch of the iPhone 8, and a likely increase in the revenue share of the smarthphone inside the business, it’s time to pay attention to diversity at Apple. Luckily, according to the Washington Post at least, Apple has been in the medical device business for years.

Can the iPad be a hospital instrument?

At Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles California, an iPad has become part of the recovery regimen. The pilot, which began in 2016, is open to women who have just given birth and patients suffering from heart problems.

The tablet is filled to the brim with information that helps the patient-practitioner relationship. It includes vital signs, data on nurses and doctors and educational material about the kind of procedure that they are set to undergo.

Apple Inc. healthkit crisis NASDAQ:AAPL

The hospital hopes that access to this information will keep patients calmer. A better informed patient feels more in control of their health and outcomes, at least according to the theory. According to the Post the initial trial has been well received. Don’t hold your breath for a massive national rollout any time soon, however.

This is a part of the broader Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL)  health strategy. Between its iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch the firm has put together a bevy of health applications that push it into the hospital ward. So far, however, these have not started bringing in cash.

Don’t bet on Apple stock for your health

Apple has a big opportunity in health, but the firm’s progress in the field is far from secure. There will be a huge amount of competition for hospital computing. At the end of the day, Apple doesn’t have too many obvious natural advantages in the field.

Tim Bajarin of Creative Strategies doesn’t agree. He told the Post, “Apple’s the only one that I’ve seen that has the most concentrated strategic vision within the company’s DNA to do this as a calculated part of their business.”

Despite the firm’s “DNA” health hasn’t yet been a winner for Apple. Of the bevy of health applications on its devices, the majority lean toward fitness and exercise. The use of heart monitors and calorie intake measures in those applications doesn’t really set the firm apart.

There are rumblings that Tim Cook’s team is working on putting health records on iOS. The firm has been actively buying start-ups in the field. It is, to date, still an infinitesimally small part of the firm’s business. We don’t know how successful Apple can be in healthcare, but the firm is digging into the industry.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) stock is still very much iPhone focused. That’s the core of the firm’s business, and it will remain so for some years going forward. Because health may increase sales, you could include it as part of the iPhone equation, but it’s effect is marginal.

Even as Apple moves forward in the health business, it seems the firm wants to use its stable of “old” products to push into healthcare. Even if HealthKit and the like are new, Apple has been building medical devices for years.

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Paul Shea

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