Watson Will Make Its Way To Apple Watch In 2016 Via Welltok’s Health Concierge App


Welltok, the Denver-based digital health startup building population health solutions, will update its consumer-facing app, CafeWell Concierge, to run on the Apple Watch, a seemingly insignificant announcement made important because it will be the first digital health app to bring IMB Watson analytics to the Apple Watch. The team behind the Concierge iOS app has been working with beta testers at IBM to refine some of its user interface designs and back-end algorithms. Welltok reports that the final product will make its way onto the Apple Watch in 2016.

In November 2013, IBM created an API for developers that were hosting applications on the IBM Developers Cloud, allowing apps to leverage Watson’s analytics power in a number of helpful ways. Welltok was named in the press release as an early developer, alongside fellow health IT startup MD Buyline. 


In the two years following Watson’s API announcement, Welltok worked on enhancements to its platform that would utilize Watson’s analytics. The company envisioned a personal wellness coach that would learn a user’s strengths, weaknesses, and preferences over time. This information would be used to help nudge users into making healthier choices by recommending options they might actually find interesting. For example, Welltok’s app will learn over time that a user does not jog, but does go to yoga classes. If this person is travelling, Welltok will find the nearest yoga class and suggest that the user try to attend. The app will remind users to make their annual doctors appointments, will suggest they get a flu shot as they pass by a retail pharmacy, and will send medication reminders when needed.

The app is the consumer interface atop an increasingly sophisticated population health infrastructure. On the back-end, Welltok works with employers, ACOs, and payers to consolidate claims data, clinical data, benefits entitlements from linked health insurance plans, and data collected from fitness trackers and medical devices to establish high-risk subgroups within the patient population. The Welltok app then uses Watson to sift through this data and churn out patient-specific content and suggestions that will help users achieve their health and fitness goals.

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