Apple may be working on more sophisticated biometric capabilities for the next version of its Apple Watch.
As MacRumors reports, a recent patent application describes how a wristband device could use a pulse oximeter to delineate the wearer’s cardiac signature. Essentially, it would shine light into the user’s wrist to determine the presence of blood in the user’s veins, which could then be used to produce a biometric profile based on the unique cardiac patterns detected. A similar system was thought to be in the pipeline for the Apple Watch 2, and it also echoes the kind of biometric authentication used by the Nymi Band, a wristband that offers cardiac-based, passive biometric authentication.
Meanwhile, another patent outlines how a future wristband device could track user gestures, which could then be used for device interaction, according to AppleInsider. That system is based on sensors tracking tension levels in the wristband, and while it clearly offers potential applications for a future Apple Watch, AppleInsider points out that Apple is rumored to be working on a peripherals system for the Apple Watch, which means this kind of advanced biometric functionality could arrive in the form of an attachable component to the device’s wristband.
All of this is speculation, of course, and there’s always the possibility that Apple won’t even put these ideas into practice anyway. The company likes to cover its bases where intellectual property is concerned.