Apple is seeking physiologists to join its team, according to a new call for job applicants discovered by 9to5Mac today. The position on offer is for a “User Studies Exercise Physiologist,” and seeks a candidate who will be responsible for creating and conducting studies “related to cardiovascular fitness & energy expenditure, including calories burned, metabolic rate, aerobic fitness level measurement/tracking” and more.
At the very end of the listing, Apple also notes that the right candidate will not only need to gather and research this kind of data, but also “apply relevant knowledge to the design of products and their testing/validation through user studies.”
The new job listing comes hot on the heels of a report earlier this week from 9to5Mac about Apple hiring a sleep research expert away from Philips, and the Jan. 31 report from the website about Apple working on a new dedicated health app called “Healthbook” for possible inclusion in its next major iOS iteration, iOS 8. 9to5Mac speculates that these, combined with recent reports that top Apple execs are meeting with the FDA, confirm the company’s intent to enter the health and fitness product market, and that an iWatch riddled with biometric sensors could be the first such device to come to market.
So far, Apple has kept mum on all speculation regarding a potential iWatch or any upcoming changes to iOS 8. But Apple CEO Tim Cook did at least acknowledge that “the wrist is interesting” and “natural” in terms of the wearable category, but also that there’s nothing really compelling already out there in the market to convince an average consumer who doesn’t wear something on their wrist to invest in wearable tech. I’ve argued in the past that the problem with current wearable tech is that none of it offers something you necessarily miss deeply when you forget it or it runs out of battery for a day; Apple may be trying to change that with all this focus on health-related hires, research and development.
At this point, there’s no question in my mind that Apple has wearable tech far along in the product pipeline. But unlike competitors including Samsung, it will never release anything half-baked, so it could be a while yet before we see anything launch, despite the growing number of signals that point to an iWatch’s existence.
Image courtesy Todd Hamilton.