Aetna Meets With Apple To Discuss Apple Watch Distribution

Audrey Hill
August 16, 2017

Apple and Aetna have reportedly been discussing a partnership to bring the Apple Watch to the insurance company's 23 million members. Now, Aetna is negotiating with Apple on a plan to offer a free or discounted Apple Watch, Apple's wearable device, as a perk to its members.

The secret, invitation-only meetings took place in Southern California last Thursday and Friday, sources said. The meetings included senior officials from Apple and Aetna, along with chief medical information officers from various hospitals across the U.S. It remains to be seen whether or not Apple will be able to beef up the battery of its smartwatch, since adding features like cellular connectivity will drain it faster than before. "It is a win win for Apple as it will drive up the average selling price of the device because they will be more expensive", Neil Shah, research director at Counterpoint Research, told CNBC. EN Gadget reports that the health insurance company is banking on the hope the popularity of Apple's watches.

KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who is one of the most respected Apple insiders in the industry, and CNBC both released predictions of their own.

Apple's current Series 2 smartwatch offers a built-in Global Positioning System to track workouts and is waterproof to allow for tracking laps in the pool.

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The Apple Watch Series 3 is expected to be announced next month with the iPhone 8.

Partnering with Aetna could boost the sales of Apple Watch whose functions coincide with the latter's campaign for wellness. But the Apple Watch is no longer the afterthought it seemed destined to become, and a deal to furnish Aetna customers with the product could expedite its growth and further enhance its importance to the company.

Apple climbed 1.55% to 159.93, still in buy range from a 156.75 flat base.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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