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Apple working on new technology, iPhone might be able to detect depression, anxiety: Report

"The data that may be used includes tracking of participants' facial expressions, how they speak, the pace and frequency of their walks, sleep habits, and heart and respiration rates," according to the WSJ article.

Apple working on new technology might be able to detect depression gcw
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California, First Published Sep 22, 2021, 4:47 PM IST
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In California, Apple may be developing a new technology that will allow the iPhone to identify sadness, anxiety, and cognitive deterioration. According to a Wall Street Journal storey, the iPhone will employ various digital cues to do this. According to the article, Apple is seeking tools that may broaden the breadth of its health portfolio, citing people familiar with the subject and documents. "The data that may be used includes tracking of participants' facial expressions, how they speak, the pace and frequency of their walks, sleep habits, and heart and respiration rates," according to the WSJ article.

Apple working on new technology might be able to detect depression gcw

According to the report, Apple may also assess a user's typing speed, frequency of mistakes, and the substance of what they text, among other data factors. This, of course, will raise privacy issues. To safeguard users ' privacy, Apple is allegedly seeking to conduct all diagnostics on-device, with no data transmitted to its servers. According to the article, these efforts stem from research collaborations launched by Apple with the University of California, Los Angeles, researching stress, anxiety, and depression, and pharmaceutical company Biogen, which is researching mild cognitive impairment.

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According to the WSJ, Apple's collaboration with UCLA has been dubbed "Seabreeze," and its collaboration with Biogen has been nicknamed "Pi."
Mild cognitive impairment is now thought to be an early indication of Alzheimer's disease. According to sources, the UCLA research will begin tracking data for 3,000 participants this year, while Biogen plans to recruit about 20,000 people to participate over the following two years, with around half of them having risk indicators for cognitive impairment.

Apple working on new technology might be able to detect depression gcw

According to the Wall Street Journal, this is still in its early stages. According to those who have heard him speak about the initiatives, Apple's Chief Operating Officer has talked passionately to staff about the company's ability to address rising rates of depression and anxiety, as well as other mental diseases.

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