Apple has finally released its much-anticipated health app, but some are asking why the app has no feature for tracking a woman's menstrual cycle.
The HealthKit app lets users track a slew of data about their bodies. The app can track not only the usual suspects, such as daily calories consumed and number of steps taken, but also oodles of other health-related data, including users' blood alcohol content, body fat percentage, respiratory rate and intake of sodium, magnesium, calcium, fiber, iodine, chromium and many other nutrients.
But the developers neglected to serve the segment of the population that menstruates, the Verge reported.
In other words, you can track your daily intake of molybdenum, but not your monthly period.
Apps for monitoring menstrual cycle do exist. For instance, Clue is an app available for iPhones that lets users keep track of bleeding, pain, mood and sexual activity over the course of the month, so a woman can know if her period is regular and when she is fertile. Another app, called Period Tracker, has similar features, and can predict the start of the user's next period. [Sexy Tech: 6 Apps That May Stimulate Your Love Life]
So why doesn't Apple's HealthKit have these features? The oversight has launched a spirited response on Twitter and other forums. Ren Gerecke (@queermath) tweeted, "Further evidence that tech doesn't care about women: no period tracking in HealthKit in iOS8." Richard Harkness (@RichHarkness) tweeted a comment he read saying that "Steve Jobs didn't have periods so Health[K]it doesn't need a period tracker."
Perhaps the app lacks a menstrual tracker because Apple's employees are primarily male, The Verge's Arielle Duhaime-Ross wrote. But that shouldn't excuse the company, which has partnered with medical experts at the Mayo Clinic and elsewhere, Duhaime-Ross said.
The app Clue has already developed an update that could integrate with Apple's HealthKit, if approved, a Clue employee told The Verge.
Your move, Apple.