Apple and IBM recently announced that they will be partnering to develop a new set of business-facing mobile apps for iOS powered by IBM’s data capabilities and platform expertise. One of the main focuses of this new partnership is healthcare, said Dan Pelino, IBM’s general manager for the public sector. The healthcare-focused apps created during Apple and IBM’s partnership will “make patient information mobile, and it will be safe and secure,” said Pelino. “It will be enterprise solutions that take advantage of the mobile device and the security and scale IBM is known for.”
Both companies have been rapidly expanding their presence in health care technology; Apple’s recently announced HealthKit is a consumer-facing mobile health-tracking platform that can integrate with other apps and monitoring devices, and IBM has worked with a number of healthcare providers to improve care delivery and expand healthcare technology. IBM and Apple also each have close relationships with health care software company Epic. Apple partnered with Epic on EHR apps and worked on HealthKit, and IBM is already involved in about 80 percent of Epic implementations. While Epic isn’t an official partner of the Apple-IBM partnership, the three companies will continue to work together, according to Pelino.
As Apple products continue to dominate the mobile device space (more than two-thirds of physicians have iPhones) and IBM continues to grow its market share in the business IT world, many consider the Epic, Apple, and IBM triumvirate to be a driving force in the future of health care technology.