Apple acquires personal health data startup Gliimpse

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Apple has acquired Gliimpse, a personal health data startup having a vision to provide health assistance to 317 million Americans. The startup company has effectively built a secure platform for users by which they can manage and share their own medical records and information. Knowing Apple’s move in acquiring such startups strongly shows that there will be a potential use of such platform for the company in the near future.

FastCompany reports that the acquisition happened earlier this year and while Apple was silent about the acquisition, the company has now issued a confirmation saying: “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans”. The actual price of the acquisition is also not being disclosed.

Gliimpse is based in Silicon Valley and started its course in 2013 founded by Anil Sethi, who started out as an Apple engineer in the late 1980s. Sethi says that his inspiration to work on Gliimpse was his sister’s battle with breast cancer and the experience on how challenging it is to acquire and manage a person’s personal health data.

“As a consumer of healthcare, I leave behind a bread-crumb-trail of medical info wherever I’ve been seen. But, I’m unable to easily access or share my own data. Obamacare is one of several forcing functions federally mandating physicians and hospitals give us our data: meds, labs, allergies . . .you get the idea. However, there’s no single Electronic Health Record that all physicians use, sigh. Worse, there isn’t even a common file format across a 1000+ systems.” – Anil Sethi

Gliimpse vision coincides Apple’s efforts in focusing on health care services, digital health and in making health and fitness data available to both consumers, physicians and health industry. Apple has been working on its HealthKit, ResearchKit and CareKit to achieve its vision on digital health care. Gliimpse also shares Apple’s commitment to privacy enforcing end-to-end encryption on the data collection.

“Your data is your data. We don’t see it. Gliimpse technology gathers your records, processes the data and continues to build your Gliimpse. Safe, secure, private.

We store and encrypt your personally identifiable data and health data separately and your data is encrypted separately from other users. Everything is encrypted with a pair 256 bit PKI keys in motion and in storage.”

The startup company primarily focuses on diabetes and cancer patients, and while Apple is keeping its silence about the purpose of its latest acquisition, it’s fair to say that it would definitely be for the benefit of the consumers and health care industry.