comscore Apple Watch models in future could come without this key feature

Apple could ditch the crown for optical sensors in future Apple Watch models

When implemented, Apple Watch users will be able to measure biometrics including heart rate, respiration rate, blood oxygen level, and blood pressure using the optical sensors replacing the crown.

Apple Watch

Image: Pixabay

The crown is one of the defining design traits of Apple’s Apple Watch models. For years, the crown has been used by Apple Watch owners for navigating the WatchOS interface. But that might change soon as the company is planning to replace the crown with optical sensors in future Apple Watch models.
The company, as per a report by Patently Apple, has been granted a patent that explains how such an Apple Watch model would look and work. The patent titled ‘Watch with optical sensors for user input’ reveals that the future Apple Watch models could use an optical sensor instead of a digital crown for getting input from users. Also Read - Your next gaming laptop, PC will be more expensive to buy: Here's why

The patent notes that while Apple Watch can include several components for taking user input, the digital crown, which is an important part of Apple Watch’s design, occupies space that could have been used by other components of the smartwatch. Now, Apple plans to use optical sensors for getting user input for measuring various vital parameters. Also Read - iPhone SE+ or iPhone SE 3? Here’s what we know about the next affordable iPhone

The patent notes the optical sensors would work in a way that users will be able to use motions and gestures near the sensor to input information to the Apple Watch instead of the touch-based gestures in case of the crown. “The motions and gestures provided by the user can be directly detected with optical systems of the input component, so that the number of moving parts are reduced and space within the watch is more efficiently utilised,” the patent notes. Also Read - Apple regains top spot in global smartphone shipments as Samsung slips

The patent also notes that the optical sensor that would replace the crown will have the ability to detect user input from one or more distance from the sensor. Furthermore, Apple Watch users will be able to measure a host of biometrics including heart rate, respiration rate, blood oxygen level, and blood pressure among other things.

It is worth noting while Apple may have been granted the patent that could potentially change the entire design of the Apple Watch series, it is possible that we may not see these changes in the 2022 Apple Watch series dubbed as the Apple Watch Series 8.
Separately, as per report by Apple analyst Ming Chi Kuo, the Apple Watch Series 8 is tipped to come with more health monitoring capabilities including blood glucose monitoring functionality.

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  • Published Date: December 30, 2021 1:31 PM IST

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