Science

Apple, Stanford testing if Apple Watch can detect heart problems

Apple, Stanford testing if Apple Watch can detect heart problems”

While developers had access to beta versions of the new software since WWDC, Apple didn't make it part of the public beta program.

While arrhythmias aren't always problematic, it could be an indication of atrial fibrillation - a condition that can show no external symptoms while carrying the risk of blood clots and strokes.

For that reason, an Apple Watch could be a useful screening tool for high-risk patients - if its heart rate monitor proves to be sufficiently sensitive and accurate.

American Well declined to comment on its involvement with Apple. However, CEO Roy Schoenberg has noted it's working closely with wearable vendors.

Apple boss Tim Cook revealed that sales of its smartwatch are up 50 per cent year-on-year and it's now the most popular watch in the world. A start-up called Cardiogram released the results of its research in May, in partnership with clinicians at UCSF.

It's clear the consumer technology giant is showing a greater interest in health and wellness, although some are still skeptical that wearables like the Apple Watch can have a significant impact on a complex healthcare system. People will be able to participate in the study with Stanford by downloading an app from the App Store, Williams said.

Apple also gave users a new list view for all of the applications loaded on their Watches.

"We started working on the Apple Watch several years ago", he said, and one goal was "performing some measurements of your health that people were not measuring, at least continually". You can also now set the Apple Watch to deliver heart rate notifications in the event you want to be informed of when you're hitting a certain level of workout or feeling a spike in stress.

Cook also confirmed that Apple is "extremely interested" in healthcare, which he sees as a "business opportunity" for the company.

Apple hasn't made an official announcement about specific Apple Watch and heart related projects.



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