It's fair to say the many variations of the Apple Watch – and, more broadly, smartwatches in general – have revolutionised the way people monitor their health. Users can use a wrist-mounted device to track their heart rate, blood oxygen saturation, stress levels, and more.
And Apple is showing no signs of slowing down. The company has been pursuing technology that would allow users to monitor their blood glucose without needing to prick their skin and take a blood sample.
Instead, the light from a laser would shine onto your skin, and use the information generated to determine the concentration of glucose in your blood. The technology is intended for the Apple Watch, and stands to drastically alter the lifestyle of diabetic users. Plus, reports suggest that the feature could track prediabetic conditions, alerting users to their status to help them adjust their lifestyle before they become diabetic.
According to MacRumors, the technology is still around "three to seven years" away from hitting the market, though. That's down to a combination of engineering and regulatory restrictions.
Currently, the technology works, but it's much larger than required to fit into the chassis of the Apple Watch. Once it has been shrunk down to an appropriate size, the feature would almost certainly need to go through extensive testing from governments and health organisations, due to the potentially severe consequences of any malfunction.
But it could still mark a significant leap forward for consumer technology. For generations, the Apple Watch has pushed the envelope for what a fitness tracker is capable of. This feature would definitely be a continuation of that proud tradition.