Apple has yet another high level hire for its fitness and health technology team now that the iPhone and iPad maker has Marcelo Lamego on the payroll. Mr. Lamego spent eight years as CTO for the medical device company Cercacor -- a company that specializes in noninvasive medial monitoring technology.
Apple keeps adding to its health and fitness talent pool
Mr. Marcelo started with Apple in January, but his new gig went unnoticed until Network World stumbled on an update to his LinkedIn profile. His LinkedIn page shows his job at Apple as "research," which doesn't directly confirm he's working on health and fitness related projects, but the fact that he handled R&D at Cercacor and was involved with the design of the company's Pronto-7 noninvasive oxygen and hemoglobin monitor is a pretty big red flag.
Apple has been on a medical and fitness related hiring spree over the past couple years. Jay Blahnik, the fitness expert that helped Nike design the FuelBand, is now an Apple employee, as is Ben Schaffer, former Nike R&D leader and high tech fabric expert. The company has also hired Dr. Michael O'Reilly who previously worked at Masimo on pulse-enabled oximeters.
The company has also hired former vice president of research at Vital Connect Ravi Narasimhan; Nancy Dougherty from the transdermal medicine delivery company Sano; former director of optics and systems engineering at C8 MediSensors, Ueyn Block; Todd Whitehurst who worked at Senseonics as vice president of product development; and sleep expert Roy Raymann who previously served as a senior scientist at Philips Research.
Apple is also on the hunt for physiologists who can develop, administer, and interpret the results from health-related studies.
Apple CEO Tim Cook has said Apple has an intense interest in wearable technology, and the long list of hires we know of offers up a strong hint that the company is working on health and fitness-related wearable devices. He hasn't offered up any details about the company's plans, leaving competitors wondering exactly how to compete when Apple enters the wearable tech market.
Even without direct confirmation, Apple is telegraphing enough information through hires and executive level comments to indicate that wearable devices like the rumored iWatch are on the way. It isn't so much of an "if" any more, it's a "when."