iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus

Given mindfulness is a part of the Apple Watch and Apple Fitness, it’s perhaps no surprise that Apple is looking to take things further. 

The Wall Street Journal has seen internal documents suggesting that the company is working on a journaling app built right into iOS, and it could be unveiled as part of WWDC.

For the uninitiated, journaling involves noting down your thoughts, feelings and activities as a way of improving mind and body. It’s supposed to be good for mindfulness, memory and can boost self-confidence, and there are also suggestions it can boost the immune system too. No wonder Apple would want a piece of that action.

Apple’s iteration is reportedly codenamed Jurassic, and the WSJ says that it will take full advantage of the hardware in ways that third-party apps can’t. For example, the report says the app could access “text messages and phone calls” as well as what the owner is up to, which doesn’t sound creepy at all. 

“The app will analyse the users’ behavior to determine what a typical day is like, including how much time is spent at home compared with elsewhere, and whether a certain day included something outside the norm” like a workout, the report continues, still managing to avoid any accusations of creepiness.

Apple is even mulling over something called “All Day People Discovery” which will detect when you’re around others, and “Apple will seek to distinguish between friends outside work and colleagues.” Absolutely not creepy.

Why Apple would want its iPhone users to know exactly how much it can infer about their movements when it spends so advertising money banging on about its commitment to privacy is anyone’s guess. I guess the software developers and marketers don’t talk very much, but we’d have to check their respective journals to find out.

Still, it’s bad news for existing journaling apps if Apple decides to enter the space. The company has flattened its software makers enough that it has a special term: Sherlocking. That’s a two-decades-old reference to the macOS software Sherlock which many believe nabbed features from third-party software called Watson. 

Indeed, when the Wall Street Journal brought the upcoming journaling feature to the attention of Paul Mayne, founder of the Day One journaling app, he brought up the term himself. “It’s always the worst thing to have to hear that you’re about to be Sherlocked,” he noted, ruefully.