Apple reportedly has employees who create fake sweat every day, and maybe you must be wondering why the company needs such a thing. The answer is pretty simple: to test its wearable devices like the Apple Watch.
Apple does this to ensure the safety of users
Apple has a lab technician whose responsibilities include coming up with a half a gallon of fake sweat daily. The company uses it to test how its products react to it, like their longevity, according to Vice. Making fake sweat is not only adding salt to water, but the process also includes different minerals and amino acids.
This revelation comes from Apple’s annual Environmental Responsibility Report. Gadgets often contain minerals that some people might be allergic to, for instance, nickel, which is pretty common in stainless steel. So by creating artificial sweat, the company tests how long it takes for nickel to transfer from metal parts in the device into the sweat, notes CNBC.
To test this, the company puts the watch straps into a jar filled with fake sweat. The jar, which simulates human body temperature, is monitored “to ensure that nickel and other allergens and irritants stay where they belong,” the company said in the report. Apple also tests its other products which might come into contact with the human skin or body.
“We analyze materials that someone might put in their mouth—like an Apple Pencil you might chew on while considering the next line in your drawing—to make sure they’re safe,” the report said.
The company gave no information how it does this, like if it makes fake saliva also for such tests.
According to the company, it evaluates its products even after they have “undergone extensive reliability” to ensure that they can be used safely “even after years of use and exposure to different environmental conditions.”
Sweat testing is pretty common in manufacturing
Apart from Apple, many other companies also produce fake sweat for different reasons, including Pickering Test Solutions, notes Fox News. Pickering, a Space Park Way, Mountain View company, specializes in developing perfect formulas for synthetic sweat.
Sweat testing is pretty common in several manufacturing sectors, like jewelry, clothing, cosmetics, leather manufacturers, and credit card companies. Such testing allows manufacturers “to test products for possible harmful or unsightly corrosion, or to test the ‘colorfastness’ of dyes and materials used in the production process,” notes Cult of Mac.
A recent patent from the iPhone maker reveals that future Apple Watch bands could come with wireless transmitters, sweat detectors, solar panels and more. Stanford scientists, meanwhile, have already created a wristband-type wearable device that can study the sweat to monitor and diagnose diseases like cystic fibrosis and diabetes.
The sensors in the band are capable of collecting sweat, studying the molecular constituents, and giving out results. This new wearable is better than old-fashioned sweat devices which require the patients to sit still for a long time to allow sweat to accumulate in the collectors.