Apple CEO Tim Cook says a new iPhone feature was inspired by Steve Jobs


Steve Jobs

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Apple announced on Tuesday that it's working with organ donor registries to sign up Americans to be organ, eye, and tissue donors through iPhone software.


Starting this fall, people will be able to use a button within the the Health app preinstalled on iPhones to become a nationally-registered donor. Apple is working with Donate Life America, a nonprofit that manages a donor registry.

Apple CEO Tim Cook told the Associated Press that the new function was partially inspired by former CEO Steve Jobs, who received a liver transplant when battling pancreatic cancer.

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According to the Apple press release, over 120,000 Americans are waiting for a critical transplant - a fact that "hit home" for Cook when Jobs went through an "excruciating" wait for a transplant in 2009.

Apple is quietly building a strong stable of health technologies. Earlier this year, analyst Tim Bajarin wrote that Apple "is on a mission to improve the overall health of its customers as well as that of the healthcare system," which is a "task Jobs gave them before he died."


The new function will work through the Medical ID feature, which allows doctors and medical providers to access a user's emergency contact information and allergies without knowing the user's passcode. Here's how Medical ID works.

Users will be able to register to become an organ donor through iOS 10, the latest version of Apple's iPhone and iPad software, which is expected to be released this fall.

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