eHealthMobile HealthTechnology

The Promise Of Google And Apple Tech For Health App Development

3 Mins read


In the connected and digitally hyperactive world of today, staying observant of health complications and fitness metrics is easier than ever. Besides the overwhelming number of fitness and daily-life health gadgets and mobile health/fitness apps of all types, the people’s mindset is now turned more towards self-care. This new mindset focused towards self-care and fitness have pushed the growth of fitness apps.

Two major mobile OS platforms, Google and Apple, are using the latest tools for building more sophisticated health and fitness apps. While Google Fit developer tools allow Android app developers to develop feature-rich and intuitive fitness apps for Android users, the ResearchKit as part of Appleā€™s HealthKit is offered to boost medical research and diagnosis better through iOS apps.

Let us now introduce these two distinct set of developer tools for health app development.

Apple ResearchKit

ResearchKit maintains a very close relationship with the HealthKit, and it is also an open-source project. But unlike the HealthKit, ResearchKit has a particular focus area. It is created to help medical research and diagnosis with the help of mobile apps. The apps built with ResearchKit will help medical researchers and practitioners getting information on the patient’s health condition and crucial medical data.

For instance, if a medical researcher is observing the symptoms and post-treatment changes of some patients suffering from skin cancer, it is vital for him to get regular updates on patient’s health condition and detailed information about symptoms and signs. This requires real-time monitoring of mission-critical medical symptoms and vital information of respective patients. This is exactly where the ResearchKit can play an important role.

Some of the key features of ResearchKit include the following.

  • It allows you to take a survey of the actual and real-time condition of the patients.
  • It is also equipped to process spoken words of patients through a microphone to detect irregularities and symptoms.
  • The ResearchKit can also monitor the behavioral and physical irregularities and symptoms by processing information about the gait observed with finger taps.
  • The ResearchKit can also monitor the logical and cognitive thinking abilities of patients by evaluating the results of tasks to be finished within a time limit.
  • The kit can also evaluate the thinking ability and color responsiveness through color and other types of tests.

In the final analysis, the ResearchKit is created by Apple with the objective of helping medical researchers and experts to conduct credible tests and evaluate medical data. Undoubtedly, this will help to make medical practices and patient care better in addition to creating more scopes for scientific breakthroughs in treatment.

Google Fit

Google Fit comes as a comprehensive ecosystem of tools meant for apps to monitor and make progress in staying fit and healthy. It basically works as a robust fitness tracker allowing the user to measure multiple fitness and health metrics.

Some of the key metrics that you can measure with Google Fit include the following.

  • The burnt calories
  • The steps were taken during a walk or jogging
  • The distance covered
  • The time spent in travel or activity

Apart from offering these features, the Google Fit also partners with various established and well-known fitness gadgets and sportswear including big names like Adidas, Polar, Nike, Runkeeper, and several others. It is primarily built for Android platform and naturally works best with Android fitness gadgets.

Main differences between ResearchKit and Google Fit

These two fitness toolkits are fundamentally different from one another. While the first one from Apple is mainly built to help medical researchers with expert health monitoring apps, the second one is just a comprehensive fitness app toolkit to serve a multitude of Android-based fitness devices and Android fitness apps.

ResearchKit is meant for the following purposes.

  • It processes vital patient information and symptoms for medical research and studies.
  • It is meant to make healthcare better by providing quality inputs to medical researchers and experts.
  • ResearchKit serves the long-term goal of uplifting the standard of medical care through iOS apps.
  • It is created to supply data power to medical research and medicinal apps requiring constant input of patient studies.

Google Fit can serve the following purposes.

  • Google Fit is mainly targeted towards users keen on sports and physical activities.
  • It is meant for setting fitness goals and making progress.
  • It is also a toolkit for building fitness apps for various sports brands.

The future of health app development with ResearchKit and Google Fit

Together with ResearchKit and Google Fit, the entire digital healthcare and fitness app industry can get a solid boost of efficiency and performance. These two platforms can really transform the entire ecosystem with health and fitness information inputs. Both the platforms will facilitate sharing health and fitness data across mobile apps in their respective platforms. While the ResearchKit helps to process health data for medical studies and research applications, Google Fit will help integrating fitness monitoring features with mobile apps and fitness and sports gadgets.

While ResearchKit is partnering with famous medical institutions well known for their research facilities and studies, Google Fit is partnering sports brands and a number of fitness apps. In the time to come, this will only help to make medical studies more informed and fitness apps better.


The daily healthcare and fitness are already on the verge of going digital. The new ResearchKit and Google Fit will further push this trending digital healthcare in the fields of medical research and fitness training.

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About author
Juned Ghanchi is a co-founder and CMO at IndianAppDevelopers Company, recognized as one of the most prominent team of app developers in India for iOS and Android platforms. He leads the app development strategy team and advises organizations ranging from startups to big brand companies.
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