Wednesday, May 1, 2019

New Garmin Forerunner watches: 45, 245, and 945

Garmin just announced new Forerunner GPS running smartwatches.

Forerunner 45 and 45S
Forerunner 245 and 245 Music
Forerunner 945


Engineered for runners, by runners, each new Forerunner features lightweight materials and an intuitive 5-button design that is easy to operate with or without gloves, and in any weather condition. The watches include an always-on, sunlight-readable display with GPS, all-day activity tracking, smart notifications, wrist-based heart rate, and new safety and tracking features that allow users to share their real-time location with chosen contacts in case they need help.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

The link between heart rate variability and diabetes

Reposted from

A very interesting study seems to suggest that continuous heart data could identify patients who have diabetes. You can read more about this story on Wired:
... at the annual AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence in New Orleans, digital health-tracking startup Cardiogram presented research suggesting the Apple Watch’s heart rate sensor and step counter can make a good guess at whether or not a person has diabetes—when paired with the right machine-learning algorithms, of course.
In 2013, researchers at UCSF launched the Health eHeart study and registered close to 200,000 participants. About 40,000 opted to link their health information with their Cardiogram app. The DeepHeart neural network was trained to spot patterns and trends linked to human disease. Using semi-supervised sequence learning (artificial intelligence), the machine interpreted patterns of heart rate variability and was able to identify patients with diabetes 85% of the time.

I find myself wondering if some of this may be related to certain pharmacologic agents such as beta blockers...

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Fitness trackers maturing to replace watches

It seems that every year, we see a exponential increase in the number of people wearing fitness trackers. Most of them are using their wearables as watches. Fitness trackers have finally matured to the point of replacing watches. Occasionally, I may still see someone who wears a watch and a separate fitness tracker. 

By far, the most popular device today is the Apple Watch. This trendy device has also reached a level of functionality that leads people to wear it continuously. I don't mean they necessarily sleep with it (since the battery life on the Apple Watch is still fairly limited). Apple Watch users don't abandon their devices after a few weeks or months. 

Many Fitbit and Garmin users wear their devices continuously and sleep with them. The longer battery life allows them to track their sleep, wake up to a gentle wrist vibrating alert, and jump right into the shower without taking the tracker off their wrist. By tracking sleep, you can also see what your heart rate does at night. 

While activity trackers were originally designed to motivate people to exercise, they can also provide useful sleep insights that can help people get better rest and wake up feeling refreshed and energized. 

The next evolution of activity trackers will include better battery life, more water resistance, and greater style options.  

Monday, November 6, 2017

Misfit Vapor Android Wear

Misfit has launched its first Android Wear smartwatch and it's called the Vapor. Unlike most Android Wear smartwatches, the Vapor is swimproof + water resistant up to 50m. That's a critical feature for swimmers who want to wear their devices in the water. The Vapor lacks a built-in GPS, which means that you need to stay connected with your phone for GPS functionality and tracking. The Virtual Touch Bezel provides seamless scrolling and navigating.

It's always interesting to see different manufacturers leverage their expertise and creativity to build functional watches running Android Wear. New Balance and Polar have devices on the market. Now, Misfit has joined in with the Vapor.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Growing body of research around wearables

Where and when did the term "wearables" originate? The oldest search result in PubMed for the search term "wearables" yields the following:

Market research on garment-based "wearables" and biophysical monitoring and a new monitoring method.
Schultze C, Burr S.
Stud Health Technol Inform. 2004;108:111-7. Review.

Then, we started seeing a spike in publication activity about 3-4 years ago:

Patient-centered activity monitoring in the self-management of chronic health conditions.
Chiauzzi E, Rodarte C, DasMahapatra P.
BMC Med. 2015 Apr 9;13:77. doi: 10.1186/s12916-015-0319-2.

A transdisciplinary approach to wearables, big data and quality of life.
Sungmee Park, Jayaraman S.
Conf Proc IEEE Eng Med Biol Soc. 2014;2014:4155-8. doi: 10.1109/EMBC.2014.6944539.

Clinical researchers and health services researchers are eager to see how wearables will truly impact population health, disease prevention, diagnosis, and disease management. While short-term studies show several key areas of progress, the biggest opportunities are at the population level. As more people embrace wearables into their daily routines, will we see an overall improvement in public health?

Monday, September 4, 2017

Garmin vívosport and vívoactive 3

The new Garmin vívosport and vívoactive 3 were just announced at IFA 2017. These new wearables combine all-day heart rate, GPS, water resistance, and smart notifications. Those are all the features I really need in a fitness-focused wearable. When you add a touch screen and mobile payment, those features are simply icing on the cake.

In some ways, the vívoactive 3 resembles the fenix 5. However, the fenix do not have touch screens and don't support mobile payments.

Fitbit also recently announced their Fitbit Ionic, but I'm waiting to see what types of smart notifications that device will support. Traditionally, Fitbit has only supported call, text and calendar notifications. Garmin devices support more types of smart notifications.

So, while everyone is out to compete against the success of the Apple Watch, it seems like the Fitbit Iconic and the Garmin vívoactive 3 may gain more traction then many of the Android Wear devices on the market. I'm still waiting to see the Misfit Vapor.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Samsung Gear Sport and Gear Fit2 Pro finally waterproof for swimming!

When Samsung released their Gear S3, I thought that IP68 meant that these were waterproof for swimming. Although IP68 means "maximum depth of 1.5m. for up to 30 minutes," I guess it doesn't mean swimming.

Well, Samsung has finally caught up with some other truly fitness-focused wearables with their latest Gear Sport and Gear Fit2 Pro.

While the Gear Sport may resemble the Gear S3, it's smaller and is waterproof for swimming.

The Gear Fit2 Pro may look just like the Gear Fit2, but it's also waterproof for swimming.

These new Samsung wearable devices are rated at 5 ATM for swimming. At last, the next generation of wearables are finally being released with enough water resistance for a few laps in the pool!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...