It’s been an extremely big month for smartwatches. Apple recently revealed their latest addition of their Watch, boasting with cosmetic updates and new features, including the FDA-cleared ECG app, fall detection, and irregular heart rate notification. Qualcomm released a brand-new made-for-wearables chip, promising an extended battery life. Meanwhile, Google announced the release of their latest Wear OS, placing your health data at centre stage. Google is also in partnership with the American Heart Association to develop a new health-tracking system through their new Fit app, encouraging users to do more cardio.
Health Is Taken More Seriously
Each of these announcements on their own are noteworthy, but still not ground-breaking. However, collectively they excel in the wearable category that’s has struggled for years to prove its usefulness and feel promising and relevant again. We always knew that wearables had the potential to be exceptional fitness companions and the latest releases indicate that companies are starting to take health more seriously than before. The 2018 smartwatches are finally more than just pedometers as they now provide valuable information such as matching up to activity standards that are recommended.
Google’s and Apple’s alliances with the AHA produced better interpretation of the heart rate data which the Wear OS and Apple Watch devices are continuously collecting. This means they appeal not only to exercise enthusiasts or runners but also a larger audience that is interested in general health.
These incredible devices are ultimately used to detect anomalies with things that essentially stray from our typical pattern. With the new Watch from Apple, this means irregular heart rate or falls. Should you fall and a4re unable to get up, the Apple Watch can even send for help. Apart from general health, the data can also be used when seeing a doctor. Our memories are unfortunately unreliable and therefore a regular record when it comes to our heart rate is far more useful in determining potential problems.
Leading an Active Lifestyle
You can also find value when you use your cardio data to determine your daily activity apart from exercise zones, and sleeping stages like most trackers do. Even though it’s not the only indicator when it comes to your overall well-being, the easiest thing for smartwatches to track is your heart rate. Google is utilising the new Fit to inspire users to develop more active lifestyles by accumulating heart points every week. Therefore, smartwatches are always on the lookout for worrying symptoms as well as becoming increasingly better when it comes to preventive care. This makes the next generation of smartwatches both naggy parents and watchful guardians.
Fitbit recently launched it’s Charge 3 along with a beta trial that utilises blood-oxygen sensors to study sleep disturbances, while Samsung released the new Galaxy Watch offering a feature that ultimately tests your stress levels. With so many new innovative features that continue to make our lives easier and more trackable, it should come as no surprise that more people are seeing the benefit of smartwatches going forward.