Okay. Now they’ve done it. Apple has now added a feature for its users to broadcast even MORE private and personal information to the world – this time about our privates. Specifically, LADIES’ privates.
Couched in the current politically correct term “Reproductive Health” and hidden in the HealthKit feature on the upcoming iPhone operating system which is currently in Beta stage, the tracker relies on input information such as “Protection Used,” “Protection Not Used,” “Sexual Activity,” “Basal Body Temperature,” “Cervical Mucus Quality,” “Menstruation,” “Ovulation Test,” etc. Bottom line: it’s a way to chart a woman’s cycle and any government agency watching the iPhone software will know where the ladies are, who got some last night, who’s trying to have a baby, and whose got PMS.
Molly McHugh of Wired Magazine claims this is in response to the myriad of apps out there that track a woman’s cycle even if Apple doesn’t want to admit it. (Let’s face it, some guys are squeamish about this stuff.)
Apple is quietly righting this wrong—although, to what degree remains to be seen. “Reproductive Health” certainly sounds like a feature that would include a period and/or ovulation tracker, but no details were given. The iPhone is hugely popular with women, and the App Store hosts a veritable cornucopia of menstruation-related apps. The fact that Apple launched HealthKit without acknowledging this is dumbfounding, and we can only hope that the update includes a fully fledged feature for women’s health. To be fair, Fitbit, Fuelband, and MyFitnessPal are just as guilty. But where they are ignoring a market, others are taking advantage—like Bellabeat and its Leaf device, which monitors personal health factors including menstruation.
Bellabeat and some of the other menstruation trackers are selling their apps to the “I want to have a baby” market and the people who want to avoid pregnancy, but don’t want to take The Pill. The UK Telegraph tells of all the neato cool charts that the Reproductive Health module of the HealthKit produces using this information to produce charts similar to the image below.
(No word on whether or not the chart will be in red.)
Gee, some of us girls learned how to do this with graph paper, a pencil, a ruler and a calendar in school. (Of course, it was Catholic high school.) Frankly, this is how the old Billings Method of natural family planning and the Creighton Model work, both of which are far more effective than the “rhythm” method Mashable claims this is. There’s nothing really new here. It’s just now on a portable device that can be hacked by any decent entity that wants this information on any one woman who just happens to be an iPhone user and has her entire life in the mini-computer.
So, there we have it. The most personal and private of a woman’s privates we can now chart for all hackers to see. Thank you very much, but this writer will be sticking to a paper calendar.