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iPhone 6 rumor rollup for the week ending Aug. 1

John Cox | Aug. 5, 2014
Just in time for trick or treat 2014, the iPhone 6 actually will be available in October, a somewhat skeptical iOSphere learned this week. Because it will be announced nearly a full month earlier, in September, we can just savor the pending release over the subsequent weeks.

Finally! Apple has heard our plaints and pleas to be allowed to put our iPhone face down so we don't have took at that skimpy, shrimpy 4-inch screen, but still have a way, apart from the tones and vibrations, of being aware that people are contacting us. That's what we call...magical.

iPhone 6 will let doctors, trainers, and nutritionists make virtual house calls

"[A] funny thing happened on the way to the mobile technology world we're now in: businesses are beginning to see that services tailored specifically to those that want access from their smartphone or tablet can be big business," opines Maury Brown, a Forbes "Contributor" [aka as Forbes Self-promoter], who describes himself as "the founder and president of the Business of Sports Network, a consulting and analysis firm which includes the The Biz of Baseball.

And Apple is "on the cusp" of doing all this, transformatively, for healthcare and fitness, with iOS 8 (with features like Health and Health Kit) and, of course, the clickbait use of the term "iPhone 6" in Brown's headline. "[S]everal companies have released health apps that go further by actually putting you in touch with a human voice," Brown enthuses. "It isn't Siri with an MD, but a network of real healthcare physicians that can take your calls, do FaceTime, and give advice. Think of it as house calls without the doctor coming to your house."

If only Brown actually had thought about it.

The example he cites is HealthTap, though what he apparently really means is HealthTap Prime, a new service by the company: for $99 a month, and $10 more for each family member, you can get "access" to over 62,000 "top US doctors" in the HealthTap prime network, anytime you want, anywhere you want. According to the HealthTap website, "it's such a simple idea, yet it's almost too good to be true."

Which exactly captures The Rollup's reaction.

Wired.com has a mostly sympathetic story about HealthTap's new network, and the company's founder, Ron Gutman, but it at least makes several points that Brown didn't bother to think about: that telemedicine is highly unlikely to replace traditional in-person care; that the "reliance on technology" isn't something most people outside of Silicon Valley and Forbes Contributor Blogs are willing to, well, rely on when it comes to personal healthcare; that knowing one's doctor, not to mention trusting them, is rather different than the healthcare equivalent of an out-sourced call center; and the extra $100-plus per month is for those rich enough, or desperate enough, not to care about the cost.

"[M]obile devices have made us more health conscious," says Brown. "It might be that in the future, studies show that the advent of the smartphone actually led to longer life expectancy."

 

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