It’s the weekend! Happy June too. Before you stop to relax and reflect, let’s review some cool tech stories from the week that you might have missed, including a report on an Apple healthcare clinic, Google’s new physical store, and a Windows 11 leak. .
Apple health clinic?
A new report suggests that Apple wanted to do more than just monitor the health of customers through hardware like the Apple Watch – it was also considering creating health clinics staffed by doctors. The project, codenamed Casper, was first reported in the the Wall Street newspaper this week.
However, work on the project appears to have stalled. According to Newspaper, Apple COO Jeff Williams and other executives envisioned customers signing up to these clinics as a subscription service. Clinicians and technical staff would rely in part on data from Apple devices to diagnose patients.
While Apple had employees participating in a pilot program, there wouldn’t have been much internal enthusiasm for the project. It seems people are fine with an Apple Watch monitoring their heart rate, but having an Apple-funded doctor sticking needles on them can be a bit too much.
Google is trying a physical store
Speaking of tech companies entering new areas, Google is on the verge of opening of its very first physical store in New York. Google will use the property in the ultra-hip Chelsea neighborhood to sell Pixel phones, Google Home, Fitbits and other hardware items. (Google has a huge office in Chelsea, which also explains the location.)
Tech companies have a mixed record when it comes to stores. Apple has made its retail storefronts a smash hit, for example, but Microsoft’s own attempts in stores have failed quite dramatically. Amazon is expanding beyond its ecommerce roots with physical stores that rely heavily on automation, but it is too early to tell if these will be successful with customers.
In other words, Google is following a well-established playbook, but is the world clamoring for a physical space where you can buy Google-branded smart phones and speakers?
Curious about what Microsoft has planned for the next version of Windows? Lucky for you, screenshots supposedly of the the new interface and the Start menu leaked. While these shots represent the final version, things aren’t actually that drastically different from the “standard” Windows interface – a little icon polish here, a little application change there. We’ll probably have to wait for an official reveal for more information on new or improved features.
Windows 11 (as this new version is probably named) shows Microsoft’s reluctance to play too much with a decades-old formula. The last time the company tried something drastic, with Windows 8 optimized for mobile, it was pilloried by media and users alike. Windows 10 was a “reset,” ditching all new tiles and the tactile user experience in favor of the old-fashioned Start button and menu bar. At first glance, Windows 11 seems like a continuation of this, with some improvements.
That’s it! Have a good weekend everyone!