Apple Watch Could Sense Hand Gestures Soon

Apple Watches use sensors on the bottom of the wristwatch that push against the wearer’s wrist to track activity and biorhythms. However, a new patent filing reveals that future iterations of Apple’s wearable might also monitor hand motions using sensors in the watch band.

According to the patent idea, when an Apple Watch user performs a hand motion, muscles, and tendons in the wrist change and produce electrical impulses that might be detected by electrodes strung through the watch band. Figures depict the variety of motions that such a band might detect, including lateral motions, wrist rotations in either a clockwise or anticlockwise direction, and palm up and down motions. (like when waving). 

Apple Has Big Plans For Apple Watch 

AppleInsider, which first reported on the latest patent application, noted that Apple timepieces already include accessibility capabilities that allow users to manage their timepieces by squeezing a thumb and finger or clenching their fists. The capacity to recognize gestures more accurately might improve accessibility overall.

By employing your flexed arm posture for more accurate workout data, having more ways to detect body movement may also enhance fitness and health monitoring. If the gesture detection is accurate enough, Apple may use it to develop wearables that can control other devices, such as gaming consoles or Apple TV menus. 

When — or if — such a sensor-loaded bracelet ever goes into production, it will be a very long time from now. While Apple has been able to add more sensors and use those that already exist in its smartwatches to track additional data like blood oxygen level and skin temperature, it is still unclear whether the company will be able to create a flexible band that can add greater bio-tracking to the Apple Watch’s toolbox for body monitoring. We still have a long way to go before we have smart clothing that works adequately to replace our current wardrobes.