Alphabet’s Verily To Develop Health-tracking Shoes
Verily, a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL), is reportedly interested in developing shoes that are able to track the wearer’s health. People familiar with the project say the company is currently looking for partners to co-develop the shoes and take them to market. Private meetings have been held with unnamed companies to discuss the project and possible partnerships.
According to the sources, the shoes would have sensors embedded in them to monitor the wearer’s movement and weight. The shoes would also have the ability to detect falls, which could be particularly helpful for people who have mobility issues but still want to maintain their independence. Prototypes of the design have already been created and shown to potential partners.
If Verily successfully completes the project, the shoes could be used for a wide range of health-related applications. A timeline for the project has not been disclosed and it cannot be confirmed whether the project is still active. Verily has not responded to a request for comment.
Verily, previously known as Google Life Sciences, currently focuses on health-oriented wearable tech. Other projects currently in the works at the company include a smart contact lens for age-related farsightedness and a stabilizing spoon for people with movement disorders. Many of the dozens of engineers and scientists working at Verily originally worked at Google.
Last month, Verily raised $1 billion in a mega-funding round led by technology-investment firm Silver Lake. At the time, the company gave no details about what the funds might be used for. According to the company’s CEO Andy Conrad, the funds would be used to “increase flexibility and optionality as we expand on our core strategic focus areas.”