Apple Watch’s amazing ECG app arrives today

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Apple Watch ECG
And it might just save your life!
Photo: Apple

The long-awaited ECG app is almost available on Apple Watch Series 4 (if you live in the U.S.) with watchOS 5.1.2.

It is the first wearable of its kind to offer this functionality, which promises to help uses detect atrial fibrillation — the most common form or irregular rhythm. Irregular heart rhythm notifications have also landed on Series 1 devices and later.

Apple Watch gets extended return policy for heart health features

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Apple Watch ECG
Not impressed by the ECG? You’ll have more time to return your Watch.
Photo: Apple

Apple Watch buyers will be granted an extended return period if they decide to return their wearable for reasons related to upcoming heart health features.

Apple usually gives shoppers 14 days to return a purchase, but an internal document reveals that some will have up to 45 days to return a Watch — as long as it’s for the right reasons.

Apple Watch wearers in U.K. could wait years for ECG feature

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Apple Watch ECG
Not impressed by the ECG? You’ll have more time to return your Watch.
Photo: Apple

Apple Watch Series 4’s incredible ability to offer electrocardiograms (ECG) is one of the biggest reasons to upgrade this year. But you can’t use it yet.

Those in the U.S. will be able to get their hands on the feature before the end of 2018, but for those in other countries, the wait could be a lot longer. If you live in the U.K., you may even have to wait “years,” one report warns.

Why we should be wary of Apple Watch ‘ultimate’ health guardian claims

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Apple Watch Series 4
A very useful tool? Yes. The ultimate tool? Let's not get too far ahead of ourselves.
Photo: Apple

One of the Apple Watch Series 4’s massive new features is its electrocardiogram (EKG/ECG) heart rate monitor.

The device is capable of monitoring irregular heart rhythms and reportedly using this to identify potential episodes of atrial fibrillation, a.k.a. AFib. As exciting as the FDA-cleared technology sounds, however, some have expressed their concerns about the tech. A new report cites several concerns — including about Apple’s usual levels of hyperbole.

Apple Watch’s new ECG reader is great, but don’t bet your life on it

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Apple Watch Series 4
Some things you should know about the FDA clearance of the new Apple Watch's EKG.
Photo: Apple

At yesterday’s iPhone and Apple Watch event, Apple revealed that it has received Food and Drug Administration clearance for the Apple Watch Series 4’s new electrocardiogram feature. In theory, this marks the ascension of the Apple Watch from a wellness health tracker to a full-fledged medical device.

But people shouldn’t be too quick to jump to conclusions about the Apple Watch’s FDA-approval stamp. Adam Masin, a litigator who deals with medical device manufacturers in product liability lawsuits, made a few crucial points on Twitter.

FDA fast-tracks Apple health products

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Apple Watch Series 2 will still make you stare at their wrists waiting for it to wake, when you should be watching where you are running
The FDA is easing up on digital health tools like Apple Watch.
Photo: Graham Bower / Cult of Mac

The Food and Drug Administration is making it easier for Apple and other tech companies to get health-related products out to the public faster.

Apple will be part of a new pilot program aimed at rapidly advancing the development of digital health applications. If the program works as intended, it could mean we’ll see new Apple Watch applications and other Apple-made health accessories a lot sooner.

FDA is taking a ‘hands-off approach’ to Apple Watch

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Apple Watch isn't being too closely, err, watched. Photo: Apple
Apple Watch isn't being too closely, err, watched. Photo: Apple

The Food and Drug Administration is in a tough spot when it comes to health-tracking wearables. As the U.S. government agency in charge of regulating medical devices, it can’t promote health-oriented technology that doesn’t do what it claims, but it also doesn’t want to stifle innovation at a time when Silicon Valley is finally turning its attention to the field.

That’s why, according to a new report, the FDA is giving the tech industry, and particularly tech giants like Apple, leeway to develop new products without aggressive regulation.

Apple sees mobile health push as ‘moral obligation’

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Craig Federighi showing iOS 8's Health app to the world at WWDC. (Photo: Roberto Baldwin/ The Next Web)
Craig Federighi showing iOS 8's Health app to the world at WWDC. (Photo: Roberto Baldwin/ The Next Web)

Apple will be working closely with the Food and Drug Administration on future products related to the health industry, according to new information provided by the government.

Back in January, The New York Times reported that Apple had met with the FDA to discuss “mobile medical applications.” The talk was believed to center on the company’s rumored plans for health-tracking software in iOS 8 and maybe even the iWatch. HealthKit and the new Health app were announced at WWDC last week, and an iWatch announcement is expected in October.

Now more of the details from Apple’s meeting with the FDA have been disclosed. Apple said it may have a “moral obligation” to do more with health-related sensors on mobile devices.