Ex-Google boss slaps medical grade EKG onto Apple Watch

Ex-Google boss slaps medical grade EKG onto Apple Watch


Calling this a killer app isn't really appropriate.
Photo: AliveCor

AliveCor, the groundbreaking medical tech company which makes an iPhone case for predicting strokes, is embracing the world of the Apple Watch.

The company’s forthcoming Kardia Band is an Apple Watch accessory which will augment the wearable’s existing heart monitor with the addition of an FDA-approved, voice-activated electrocardiogram that can analyze your heart rate and email it directly to your physician.

“AliveCor sits on the other side of the FDA line,” former Google exec and AliveCor CEO Vic Gundotra told Re/code. “We are not a fitness product. This is not a toy. We’re talking about people’s lives.”

While there’s no release date noted for the accessory yet, this is the kind of application I can see being a great use-case for the Apple Watch — even if the market is not necessarily giant.

One of the most notable pieces of publicity the Apple Watch received came when its heart monitor helped diagnose a potentially fatal condition in a teenager, which could have resulted in his untimely death if left unchecked. Apple has also recently applied for a patent for something called “Care event detection and alerts,” which would be able to call emergency responders if it thinks you are in danger.

In the past, comparisons between the Apple Watch’s heart monitor and medically-approved electrocardiogram have suggested that the readings both get are virtually identical.

FDA approval will undoubtedly slow down the rollout of Apple Watch medical accessories. With that said, I can see this kind of technology being revolutionary in our future: helping medicine to truly move into the twenty-first century.

And companies like AliveCor are leading the way!