What you need to know
- Samsung will soon roll out a new health feature update to Galaxy Watch across several markets.
- Supported Galaxy Watches will be able to detect and notify users of Atrial Fibrillation (AFib).
- The feature will come to eligible Galaxy Watches with the upcoming One UI 5 Watch update.
Samsung announced the Irregular Heart Rhythm Notification feature for Galaxy Watch owners will be available soon in select markets.
The new feature can be found on the Samsung Health Monitor app, and it will be available this summer across 13 markets, the company announced in a shared press release. They include Argentina, Azerbaijan, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Georgia, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Panama, UAE, Korea, and the U.S.
The new helpful feature comes as an addition to existing ECG monitoring and other heart monitoring features that compatible Galaxy Watches already provide. Samsung is bringing the new ability to check for potential signs of atrial fibrillation, widely known as AFib, by checking for irregular heart rhythms and notifying users if any are detected using Irregular Heart Rhythm Notifications.
AFib is a condition where affected users can have irregular or rapid heart rhythm, which can lead to blood clots. It can further increase the chance of stroke and heart failure, amongst other cardiovascular complications.
The feature was previously cleared by the Korean Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS) and the "U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)."
"Cardiovascular disease remains one of the main causes of death around the world, and we're committed to empowering our users to stay informed about their heart health by providing monitoring tools," said Hon Pak, Vice President and Head of Digital Health Team, MX Business at Samsung Electronics.
"We're constantly exploring new ways to help Galaxy Watch users obtain deeper insights on their health and wellness effortlessly, day and night."
Incorporating the AFib feature has been widely popular in some of the best smartwatches, including the Apple Watch. Other smartwatch makers like Google's Fitbit and Garmin have also included this feature, so it's good to see Samsung bringing the ability to the Galaxy Watch.
Still, users should always check with their doctor if they have any concerns. Android Central's Jerry Hildenbrand warns that users should not put their complete trust in smartwatches when it comes to health and that these features should only be used as supplementary measures.
When the feature rolls out, Samsung says the Galaxy Watch 4 series and Galaxy Watch 5 series will be eligible for the new IHRN feature. The company intends to release it with the One UI 5 Watch update later this year.
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Vishnu works as a freelance News Writer for Android Central. For the past four years, he's been writing about consumer technology, primarily involving smartphones, laptops, and every other gizmo connected to the Internet. When he is away from keyboard, you can see him going on a long drive or chilling on a couch binge-watching some crime series.