'Apple Watch Series 6' may introduce blood oxygen detection, better ECG

Posted:
in General Discussion edited June 2020
New health-focused features and a new sensor suite may come to Apple Watch this fall, including blood oxygen detection and an improved ECG.

Apple Watch already has fall detection and heart rate monitoring by default
Apple Watch already has fall detection and heart rate monitoring by default


While the technology for blood oxygen detection has existed in the Apple Watch since the first version, it has never been used. However, a new report claims that the "Apple Watch Series 6" in the fall may have the ability.

If a person's blood oxygen falls below healthy levels, which is usually around 95% to 100% saturation, it can lead to heart health issues or even cardiac arrest. It is suggested that once implemented, users will be able to get push notifications for low blood oxygen.

According to 9to5Mac, which claims to have access to snippets of iOS 14 code, this technology could come in the future, and along with it an upgraded ECG.

The Apple Watch Series 4 and newer can conduct an Electrocardiogram via the Digital Crown. There is a limitation, however, because it will return inconclusive results if the heart rate is too high. An improved system would allow ECGs to be performed at much wider ranges.

It is unknown if the new health features will require new hardware or if watchOS 7 will enable the features in older Apple Watches.

The Apple Watch has been credited for saving many people's lives, and each new feature added could lead to more lives saved. From saving a teen from an SVT or someone from a car crash, new stories are shared every day.

Apple continues to advance the Apple Watch and continues to champion the device as a life saving gadget. CEO Tim Cook has made it very clear that more preventive healthcare technology is on the way.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 30
    Now, throw in Blood Glucose levels and you'll have the Triple Crown of detection.
    mwhitedigitolcaladanianBart Ybeowulfschmidtravnorodomjahbladelolliversphericchasm
  • Reply 2 of 30
    velociveloci Posts: 10member
    Blood oxygen saturation is a good indicator of lung function for suffers of coronavirus. This would be ideal monitor for self isolation. 
    caladanianGeorgeBMacGG1ravnorodom
  • Reply 3 of 30
    em_teem_te Posts: 39member
    Is this the same as the SpO2 sensor in the Fitbit Versa?
  • Reply 4 of 30
    seanjseanj Posts: 241member
    If the tech is in existing Apple Warches but never been used then it would be great to see Apple enable it’s use in a future iOS. It would once again demonstrate Apple giving customers more features long-after their initial purchase. This is one of the big features that differentiates Apple from others companies like Samsung.
  • Reply 5 of 30
    I hope the screen is more durable because the Series 4 screen sucks. I did nothing to mine and I am as careful as can be and it is scratched up big time. 
    racoleman29
  • Reply 6 of 30
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    I hope the screen is more durable because the Series 4 screen sucks. I did nothing to mine and I am as careful as can be and it is scratched up big time. 
    I have a series 3 and my screen looks as good as the day I got it. 

    If you didn't do anything to yours, then how did it get all scratched up? It must have come into contact with something. I don't think that air causes scratches. Do you have long, sharp nails? Are your fingers made of pure diamond?
    Bart YGeorgeBMacrazorpitllamajahbladeJWSClolliver
  • Reply 7 of 30
    kitatitkitatit Posts: 48member
    I hope the screen is more durable because the Series 4 screen sucks. I did nothing to mine and I am as careful as can be and it is scratched up big time. 
    The models with the sapphire crystal face would almost completely eliminate this. Not much use now but it’s worth it if keeping it looking nice and readable is important if you eventually replace it. 

    Unfortunately, my work environment is so harsh, almost any Apple Watch will get rapidly destroyed. Maybe except for the ceramic cased one with a sapphire face.  
  • Reply 8 of 30
    apple ][ said:
    I hope the screen is more durable because the Series 4 screen sucks. I did nothing to mine and I am as careful as can be and it is scratched up big time. 
    I have a series 3 and my screen looks as good as the day I got it. 

    If you didn't do anything to yours, then how did it get all scratched up? It must have come into contact with something. I don't think that air causes scratches. Do you have long, sharp nails? Are your fingers made of pure diamond?
    The screen on my AW4 is flawless as well. Not even a nick. This is my third AW, and they all have been similar.
    GeorgeBMacchasm
  • Reply 9 of 30

    kitatit said:
    I hope the screen is more durable because the Series 4 screen sucks. I did nothing to mine and I am as careful as can be and it is scratched up big time. 
    The models with the sapphire crystal face would almost completely eliminate this. Not much use now but it’s worth it if keeping it looking nice and readable is important if you eventually replace it. 

    Unfortunately, my work environment is so harsh, almost any Apple Watch will get rapidly destroyed. Maybe except for the ceramic cased one with a sapphire face.  
    (For @tomjunio39 as well): https://www.pinnacleluxuries.com/products/ultimate-steel-apple-watch-case-screen-protector?variant=28575816548413&currency=USD&gclid=EAIaIQobChMImpi8tJmN6AIVAVYMCh0p3ANIEAQYASABEgK_KvD_BwE There are tons available like this one.
    steveau
  • Reply 10 of 30
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 9,874member
    veloci said:
    Blood oxygen saturation is a good indicator of lung function for suffers of coronavirus. This would be ideal monitor for self isolation. 

    Yes!   The Corona virus creates a form of pneumonia -- and monitoring SpO2 is standard practice when caring for anyone with lung problems to see how well the lungs are able to oxygenate the blood.

    But another use I see for it is for endurance athletes.   It is widely acknowledged in sports medicine the main criteria for measuring the ability of runners, cyclists and such is VO2Max -- the ability of the body to get Oxygen to the muscles.  And, as an athlete runs his heart rate increases mostly in response to the combined effect of lower blood Oxygen levels and higher blood CO2 levels.   An SpO2 sensor on the watch would enable endurance athletes to monitor 2 of the 3 main criteria of their status (the third is glucose levels)

    That feature alone would be enough to get me to trade in my Series 4.   (Plus, the always on feature would also be a nice upgrade)
    edited March 2020 razorpit
  • Reply 11 of 30
    Now, throw in Blood Glucose levels and you'll have the Triple Crown of detection.
    I am dying for this feature. Waiting forever. This would be a serious disruption to the glucose monitor device industries.
    edited March 2020 razorpitspheric
  • Reply 12 of 30
    dewmedewme Posts: 3,699member
    Now, throw in Blood Glucose levels and you'll have the Triple Crown of detection.
    I am dying for this feature. Waiting forever. This would be a serious disruption to the glucose monitor device industries.
    Yes indeed, this would be a groundbreaking advancement in the state of the art in diabetes management if it can be done in a non intrusive manner. If Apple attained exclusivity with this capability the sales numbers attributed to Apple Watch would be staggering, even if this feature added a couple hundred dollars to the product price. This is definitely a holy grail quest for all wearables makers and no doubt every single one of them is pursuing this with great fervor.
    razorpitravnorodom
  • Reply 13 of 30
    Hey Apple [], I know that air doesn’t cause scratches. Do not insult my intelligence. And no, I do not have long sharp nails as I am a guy and no they are not made of pure diamonds. 
    edited March 2020
  • Reply 14 of 30
    Now, throw in Blood Glucose levels and you'll have the Triple Crown of detection.
    I am dying for this feature. Waiting forever. This would be a serious disruption to the glucose monitor device industries.
    Dexcom was a shot across the bow.  It's been a couple of weeks since I did a fingerstick BG.  Reliable transdermal testing would be awesome for both diabetics and non-diabetics wanting to lose weight.

    For me, O2 levels would be good for flying, especially when I start IFR training.later this year.
  • Reply 15 of 30
    apple ][ said:
    I hope the screen is more durable because the Series 4 screen sucks. I did nothing to mine and I am as careful as can be and it is scratched up big time. 
    I have a series 3 and my screen looks as good as the day I got it. 

    If you didn't do anything to yours, then how did it get all scratched up? It must have come into contact with something. I don't think that air causes scratches. Do you have long, sharp nails? Are your fingers made of pure diamond?
    Don’t insult my intelligence by stating that air doesn’t cause scratches and that my watch must have come into contact with something. No kidding, I never thought of that. Also, being a man, my nails are not long and sharp and they are not made of pure diamonds. 
  • Reply 16 of 30
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 9,874member
    Now, throw in Blood Glucose levels and you'll have the Triple Crown of detection.
    I am dying for this feature. Waiting forever. This would be a serious disruption to the glucose monitor device industries.
    Dexcom was a shot across the bow.  It's been a couple of weeks since I did a fingerstick BG.  Reliable transdermal testing would be awesome for both diabetics and non-diabetics wanting to lose weight.

    For me, O2 levels would be good for flying, especially when I start IFR training.later this year.
    I would be surprised if we see glucose testing anytime soon -- at least for insulin dependent diabetics.  They often base their insulin dose on reading and an incorrect dose can literally kill them.

    But, for more general purposes ("Is it high?") it might be more feasible.
    But then, it will be hard to separate the two to the FDA's satisfaction.

    JWSCGG1
  • Reply 17 of 30
    jumpcutterjumpcutter Posts: 100member
    It is nice that Apple constantly improves the various functions and apps but not the battery life! 18 hours of charge still does not qualify as an "all-day battery." I do not understand, Apple supposedly has all these great innovative minds but can not build a better battery. Other watch companies like Fit Bit and Garmin have developed batteries that hold up to 5 to 14-day charge. Garmin has even a solar version! What is the problem with Apple other than wanting to overcharge for their products with inferior technology and trying to amaze everyone with their apps which is nice but with crappy battery life? Apple amazes me with their apparent lack of innovation and false claims of great watch sales. I would like to get a titanium version of the Apple Watch but the battery life has stopped me from buying one. Garmin fenix 6 has a titanium version for the same amount of money as Apple's titanium version but better battery life.  Sorry Apple, I know this is not the first time anyone has commented on the apparent weakness of the Apple Watch. It does not matter how pretty you built a house but if the foundation is weak it will still falter! The battery life is the foundation of the watch as far as I am concerned! I know people will call me a troll and whatever. I do not care! Even the Apple salespeople wish for better batter life!
    tomjunior39
  • Reply 18 of 30
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 9,874member
    It is nice that Apple constantly improves the various functions and apps but not the battery life! 18 hours of charge still does not qualify as an "all-day battery." I do not understand, Apple supposedly has all these great innovative minds but can not build a better battery. Other watch companies like Fit Bit and Garmin have developed batteries that hold up to 5 to 14-day charge. Garmin has even a solar version! What is the problem with Apple other than wanting to overcharge for their products with inferior technology and trying to amaze everyone with their apps which is nice but with crappy battery life? Apple amazes me with their apparent lack of innovation and false claims of great watch sales. I would like to get a titanium version of the Apple Watch but the battery life has stopped me from buying one. Garmin fenix 6 has a titanium version for the same amount of money as Apple's titanium version but better battery life.  Sorry Apple, I know this is not the first time anyone has commented on the apparent weakness of the Apple Watch. It does not matter how pretty you built a house but if the foundation is weak it will still falter! The battery life is the foundation of the watch as far as I am concerned! I know people will call me a troll and whatever. I do not care! Even the Apple salespeople wish for better batter life!

    To get the battery life that a Garmin or FitBit does you would have to lower the screen quality as well as lower the functionality down to their level.  Plus, some of the Garmins pickup extra battery life simply by being extra huge.

    The functionality I get from my Apple Watch far out weighs the 45 minutes or so that I spend to charge it in the morning.  Other than that it's on my wrist 23 hours a day 7 days a week.
  • Reply 19 of 30
    Now, throw in Blood Glucose levels and you'll have the Triple Crown of detection.
    I would love this feature, barring the need for some expensive add on component but I don’t see it happening soon. First there are a lot of technical difficulties just to get it to work reliably. But the biggest problem in today’s political world is that lots of pharmaceutical companies make a lot of money selling testing supplies and they don’t want to lose the steady income. If this is technically possible I would expect a political fight. 
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 20 of 30
    sandorsandor Posts: 589member
    veloci said:
    Blood oxygen saturation is a good indicator of lung function for suffers of coronavirus. This would be ideal monitor for self isolation. 

    But another use I see for it is for endurance athletes.   It is widely acknowledged in sports medicine the main criteria for measuring the ability of runners, cyclists and such is VO2Max -- the ability of the body to get Oxygen to the muscles.  And, as an athlete runs his heart rate increases mostly in response to the combined effect of lower blood Oxygen levels and higher blood CO2 levels.   An SpO2 sensor on the watch would enable endurance athletes to monitor 2 of the 3 main criteria of their status (the third is glucose levels)


    It is far better to measure muscle oxygenation of the worked muscles with a NIRS system like Moxy. https://www.moxymonitor.com/
    The farther away your sensor is from the muscles consuming the oxygen, the less actionable the data is. So a wrist-based sensor isn't useful as a training tool.

    Now if Apple incorporated an optical blood lactate meter in the AppleWatch, well that could be beneficial.

    edited March 2020 gatorguy
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