Advanced features to look for in a wearable device

Advanced features to look for in a wearable device


Advanced features to look for in a wearable device

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 Advanced features to look for in a wearable device

Being active sometimes needs a push, and smartwatches, fitness trackers, and other wearable devices with advanced features can help.

Every year, these devices get better, and as time goes on, they will continue to add more technology that can track not only your activity but also your health. They are not all the same and may have different focuses, but they all have the same goal of getting people to do something.

Instead of just picking a type of wearable, it might be a better idea to look at the features and functions. Which ones do you care about the most? What do you want to get done? How could a certain trait help you get there? What wearables can do is changing as new features are added. Here are some of the most important things to look for.

Pulse oximeter (spO2) Electrocardiogram (ECG) VO2max GPS Sapphire glass

Pulse oximeter (spO2)

On smartwatches and fitness trackers, a pulse oximeter is often called a spO2 sensor, but the two terms mean the same thing. The medical term for this is "peripheral capillary oxygen saturation," which means that it measures how much oxygen is in the blood. Health professionals will call these "pulse oximeter readings" because they are trying to figure out how much of the oxygen-carrying protein haemoglobin is oxygenated and how much is in the blood.

Wearables with this feature use a light sensor that passes through blood vessels to get a reading, which is best done when the person is resting. The sensor gets a percentage by looking at how much light goes through blood vessels. Anything at or above 95 percent is considered normal. Anything below 92 percent could be a sign of something.

It's easy to wear on your wrist, especially if it can help you figure out if you might have sleep apnea. Since a spO2 sensor can take multiple readings while you sleep, it may record information that, while it may not prove sleep apnea for sure, could be a sign that you should get more tests. People who have trouble breathing or with their sinuses might benefit from having a sensor like this close by that can measure blood oxygen at any time.

Electrocardiogram (ECG) (ECG)

Don't confuse an ECG (electrocardiogram) with a heart rate monitor, which is a completely different feature. An ECG measures the heart's electrical activity, paying special attention to how well it beats. They are used by doctors to check for conditions like arrythmia (an irregular heartbeat) and atrial fibrillation.

Some of these tests can be done on your wrist with a smartwatch or fitness tracker that can do an ECG. There are no electrodes to put on your chest, as is usually done in a hospital. With a compatible wearable, you can get a reading after 30 seconds to see if your heart has a normal sinus rhythm or an abnormal heartbeat. Do several readings over the course of a day or week to see if a pattern starts to emerge.

You can't overstate how useful this feature is because it could help anyone know when something might be wrong. Even though an ECG on a wearable device can't do everything a medical-grade one can, it can still be helpful to have in case your heartbeat isn't normal. It can also be very helpful for people who already have health problems because it can help them keep track of any changes or fluctuations caused by their environment or what they do. An ECG on your wrist is a good place to start, but you should always talk to a doctor or other health professional first.


VO2max is different from other measures of oxygen because it looks at how well your body uses oxygen when it is working the hardest. It measures the milliliters of oxygen you use per kilogram and per minute to figure out your overall endurance. If you've ever seen athletes running on a treadmill while wearing an oxygen mask, that's probably what they're testing.

Even though a smartwatch can't do what a real lab can, that doesn't mean you won't learn anything useful. It will tell you your VO2max based on when your oxygen flow stays the same even though your workload is increasing. And don't worry if you don't have a treadmill. You can still get a score by running outside over and over again. In general, the higher your VO2max, the better shape you are in.

Smartwatches and fitness trackers don't have a special sensor for this. They use tracking information, such as age, weight, gender, resting heart rate, and level of activity, to come up with a score. The only way to improve its accuracy is to run, because the keys are pace and heart rate. The reason is that a lower heart rate while running on a flat surface means a higher VO2max score, while a higher heart rate at the same pace means a lower score. This is one way to find out where your conditioning is strong and where it is weak.

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