Inside Apple’s Next Game-changing Innovation (Hint: It’s Not The iPhone 6)

The fall season and tech giant Apple go hand-in-hand. Seasonal fruit jokes aside, Apple's gained a reputation for using the autumn months to introduce its highly anticipated products just ahead of the holiday shopping season to resounding success.

Apple HealthKit Logo. Source: Apple

However, the privacy concerns will be far more nebulous an issue for Apple to navigate. As you can imagine, the transmission of health care data that Apple intends to hasten with Health/HealthKit is a highly regulated area of technology. Apple is fast at work in meeting with various stakeholders, but with as many as six different government agencies handling oversight of health care data by one estimate, Apple appears in for a challenge; a solvable one, but an immense one at that.

How Apple stands to gain

The first and most easily visible advantage to making Health/Healthkit a winner would be the clear financial benefit that HealthKit and any other associated devices ( cough, iWatch ) would produce for Apple. Although hard to pin down, if Apple can create unique, value-adding hardware around HealthKit, it stands to make a pretty penny. I'm of the belief that Apple will indeed produce an iWatch at some point in the coming months, but that's for another article.

The second advantage a successful mass adoption of HealthKit would

Source: Apple

produce for Apple would be a further solidification of its already incredibly sticky ecosystem. By creating a digital hub for health care technology, Apple would create another set of massive network effects by enabling developers to reach consumers en masse once again. We've seen this time and again in technology, network effects matter. However, in positioning itself as the trusted technological handler of your health information, Apple would create another key reason for consumers to keep buying Apple devices.

The final benefit would be more symbolic, but still material in my mind, and that's Apple proving to the public and investing community that it can still innovate. Although it's highly anecdotal, I have a lot of conversations with people about the investing merits of Apple (sadly or otherwise, you be the judge). However, almost to a person, every conversation raises this issue in some way, shape, or form. By shooting the lights out with HealthKit and establishing it as the de facto platform for health care technology, Apple and CEO Tim Cook will have largely exercised the ghost of founder Steve Jobs.

Hurry up and wait

Ultimately, I'm optimistic that Apple has a winner in the works with Health and HealthKit. Between Apple's deep expertise in hardware, software, and softer skill like branding, I can think of few companies that are better suited to shake-up the health care industry in a big way. And with probably less than a month to go before HealthKit makes its official debut, I'm certainly watching with apt attention, and you should be too.

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The article Inside Apple's Next Game-changing Innovation (Hint: It's Not The iPhone 6) originally appeared on

Andrew Tonner owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool recommends Apple and Nike. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and Nike. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days . We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy .

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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