To sell the new health functions of watchOS 9, Apple sent to TechCrunch Jeff Williams, chief operating officer (the “Tim Cook of Tim Cook”, who is also the big boss of the Apple Watch) and Sumbul Desai, vice president of health. The new version of the smartwatch operating system further strengthens the capabilities of the Apple Watch in tracking heart activity.
After the app and sensors to perform electrocardiograms (ECG) and arrhythmia notifications to identify signs of atrial fibrillation, Apple has developed an atrial fibrillation (AF) history function. A first for a connected watch, which required the green light from the FDA, the American administration authorizing the marketing of products for medical use. The Apple Watch ECG went through the same procedure.
” AF history has been validated by a clinical study, with participants wearing Apple Watches and an FDA-approved reference device “Sumbul Desai explains. ” In this study, the difference in weekly measurements between the two devices was less than 1% “.
This function will be useful for managing lifestyle factors that may influence health status (sleep, alcohol consumption, exercise).
Jeff Williams adds that Apple has two fundamental pillars when it comes to launching new health-related products and services. On the one hand, we must ensure that confidentiality is respected, and that these services are ” deeply rooted in science “. When we talk about thrilling, it is indeed better to be 100% sure of what we are doing!
Will this FA history be available in France this fall with the final version of watchOS 9? To read TechCrunchonly US users will be entitled to it, but the Apple site is content to say that this function is approved by the FDA for people aged 22 or over who have been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation.
These people will then be able to access the estimate of how often the heartbeat shows signs of AF, they will also get notifications each week and they will have access to a detailed history in the Health app. Finally, they will be able to download a PDF file to send to the doctor.
Less anxiety-provoking and available to everyone as soon as the final version of watchOS 9 is among us, sleep tracking is improving. Inaugurated with watchOS 7, this function was nothing frankly stunning and Kevin Lynch, the software manager of the watch, had not dangled great improvements.
It’s that Apple needed to make sure the science behind this feature was sound. ” The machine learning models we trained were validated with the help of the gold standard medical examination, polysomnography “Details Desai. This medical examination consists of recording physiological variables during the patient’s sleep: respiratory rate, heart rate, electromyogram of the muscles of the arms and legs, etc.
All this allows the Sleep app to detect the user’s sleep stages: REM, deep or light sleep. Apple prefers to speak of ” core ” instead of ” light “. The manufacturer indeed finds that the term “light” does not correspond to the reality of what this phase is, which is a normal part of the sleep cycle. The word “light” can be misleading and suggest that this phase is not as important as the other two.
watchOS 9 also introduces a Treatments app that turns the Apple Watch into a digital pill box.
watchOS 9: the Apple Watch becomes a digital pill box