Apple's next software update has a lot of people excited for a lot of different reasons. One reason is that it will make it easier for users to register as organ donors. The feature will be in the Health app, so that users can sign up to become eye, tissue, and organ donors with "just a few taps." Anyone who signs up on their iPhone will have their information sent right to the National Donate Life Registry. The feature won't be available until the fall, though it will be in beta later this month.
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There has long been a shortage of organ donors in the US, and Apple CEO Tim Cook told the AP that the problem became apparent to him after the death of the company's co-founder Steve Jobs in 2011. Jobs fought a rare form of pancreatic cancer, eventually receiving a liver transplant in 2009 after waiting for a long time. Cook even offered Jobs a transplant, though he denied it.
The National Kidney Foundation says that there are currently 121,678 people waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant, and a staggering 100,791 of those people need a kidney. Every day, 22 people will die in need of an organ transplant. Every ten minutes, someone is added to the waiting list.
In May, the White House expressed the desire to encourage more people to become organ donors by working with Facebook, Google, and Twitter in order to improve awareness. It seems they are starting on that mission already.
"With the updated Health app, we’re providing education and awareness about organ donation and making it easier than ever to register. It’s a simple process that takes just a few seconds and could help save up to eight lives," said Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer, in a press statement. "Together with Donate Life America, we’re excited to deliver this new feature to iPhone users in the US with iOS 10."
Apple first announced iOS 10 last month, with SVP Craig Federighi calling the software update "the biggest iOS release ever for our users."
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It might not be as dramatic as some of the other updates, but it features a lot of visual tweaks and a fantastic new lock screen feature.