Samsung has unveiled a processor it hopes will become the cornerstone of the next-generation of wearable devices. The chip is designed to gather and process data on body fat, skeletal muscle mass, heart rate and rhythm, skin temperature and stress, setting it up to power devices with capabilities beyond those of the current generation of wearables.
To date, manufacturers of most wearables have limited their devices to the tracking of heart rate, despite reports suggesting Apple ($AAPL) and others had more ambitious plans at times last year. Samsung is tipping 2016 to be the year that starts to change. The South Korean conglomerate’s new chip, dubbed a Bio-Processor, is central to this forecast. Samsung has integrated 5 analog front ends into the chip, giving it the ability to oversee bioelectrical impedance analysis, photoplethysmogram, electrocardiogram, skin temperature and galvanic skin response.