Apple has hired Sage Bionetworks president and co-founder Stephen Friend for its health-related projects, according to a Sage press release spotted by Business Insider. While it isn’t specifically mentioned in the announcement, Friend will likely strengthen Apple’s CareKit and ResearchKit efforts.
As Business Insider points out, Sage Bionetworks has been an important partner in Apple’s health-focused frameworks, ResearchKit and CareKit, as it helped develop the Parkinson mPower app (one of the first ResearchKit apps) and was also among the first to launch CareKit-enabled apps.
Although Friend has accepted the role at Apple, he will remain at Sage Bionetworks as chairman of the board. Prior to founding Sage Bionetworks, he was an executive at Merck and faculty member at Harvard Medical School.
Apple first launched its health-related platforms in 2014 with HealthKit. ResearchKit expanded upon HealthKit, accessing the built-in sensors of the iPhone such as the accelerometer, microphone, gyroscope, and GPS sensors to get more information about the study participant’s motor impairment, fitness, fitness, speech, memory, and much more.
While ResearchKit and CareKit based apps were initially available only in the US, Apple has expanded their availability to other countries as well. ResearchKit studies covered issues such as autism, epilepsy, and melanoma.