"So now you can take an ECG any time, anywhere right from your wrist".
How big is Apple's focus on health tech?
Today, Apple rolled out watchOS 5.1.2 to all Apple Watch models, making the long-awaited electrocardiogram feature available to Apple Watch Series 4 owners in the United States. However, the ECG and irregular heart rhythm detection are only rolling out to the US.
While the ECG app is available only for the Apple Watch Series 4, the irregular rhythm notification feature is available for older models starting the Apple Watch Series 1, which was launched two years back on September 16, 2016.
The ECG app's ability to accurately classify an ECG recording into AFib and sinus rhythm was validated in a clinical trial of around 600 participants. Apple Watch will keep a passive track on the heart rate rhythms in the background and will push a notification if senses something is wrong.
If the ECG app detects a normal rhythm, users will be informed that they have a standard sinus rhythm. The Digital Crown has the conductor through which it detects the heart rhythm. Once the the Apple Watch is done taking the ECG measurement, it will show the user a heart rhythm classification which can be shared with their doctor.
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Apple's ECG sensor is notable because it's the first of its kind available over the counter to consumers. The Doctor confirmed the Watch's reading, saying "this probably saved you".
An ECG is a very non-invasive medical test created to measure the electrical activity of the human heart, and is most often employed by cardiologists, hospitals and medical centers to aid in the diagnosis of heart conditions like Atrial fibrillation (Afib).
Some cardiologists and other experts have raised concerns that the Apple Watch's ECG feature is unnecessary for the general population or could cause problems, including false positives.
You can manually check for the software update on your connected iPhone. Even if the watch does detect a problem with the heart rhythm, the final call have to be taken by a doctor after regular tests have been carried.
"Apple's largest contribution to mankind will be in improving people's health and well-being", Tim Cook told TIME in a recent interview.
Doctor comes in, looks at the screen, looks at me and says "You should buy Apple stock".