Felix Stalder on Mon, 14 Apr 2014 10:16:10 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> Will your insurance company subsidize your quantified self?

[Is there a difference between subsidizing those who do and penalizing
whose who don't? Felix]

Apple may seek health insurer subsidies for iWatch fitness bands

Posted 04/11/2014 07:27 PM ET


Apple (AAPL) could be looking to health insurance companies to help
subsidize its rumored iWatch fitness bands in the same way that wireless
carriers subsidize the cost of smartphones.

That speculation comes from Timothy Arcuri, an analyst with Cowen & Co.
He raised the possibility on Friday in a research note that discussed
possible product launches, including the iWatch, later this year from Apple.

"We continue to believe it is possible the product (iWatch) is
backstopped by some sort of insurance subsidization model similar to the
carrier subsidization model for iPhone," he wrote.

Its pitch apparently would be that an Apple a day keeps the doctor away.
In other words, if people wearing an Apple iWatch are more cognizant of
steps taken, calories burned, blood pressure, heart rate and other
biometric data, they will lead healthier lives and have less need for
medical care.

Arcuri thinks Apple will introduce the wearable device in September to
hit the holiday shopping season, based on his discussions with companies
in the supply chain.

"We continue to feel this product will differentiate itself with
existing wearable products primarily from a health perspective with a
number of key innovations including noninvasive blood cell count and
blood pressure and other more pedestrian features like heart rate,"
Arcuri wrote. But he noted that the wearables market is "nascent and
fraught with demand uncertainty."

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