Apple may soon add oxygen level monitoring to the Apple Watch. It is not yet known whether this function will be available for all models or only for the Apple Watch Series 6.
According to 9to5mac, the code found in iOS 14 indicates that Apple is working on improving watchOS to continuously analyze the level of oxygen in your blood circulation as well as new improvements in the watch’s electrocardiogram (ECG) functionality. .
The function will work like heart rate and ECG monitoring: when the Apple Watch detects an oxygen level that is outside the healthy range, it will alert the user. A range of oxygen levels from 100 to 85% is considered normal. Anything that could damage your heart and affect your brain function could trigger a notification, just like an irregular or extreme heartbeat does now.
As iFixit discovered during its disassembly in 2015, the Apple Watch is perfectly capable of measuring blood levels in oxygen even if the function has never been activated. So, in theory, Apple could add oxygen monitoring to all of its Apple Watch models.
It is unlikely to happen, as Apple has a long history of adding additional functionality to the latest models of its devices, even if the older models have perfectly capable hardware. Google’s latest Fitbit has added blood oxygen monitoring to older models via a simple software update.
It is also possible that the Cupertino company adds a more precise dedicated oximeter to the Apple Watch Series 6, thus justifying to make it a new feature exclusive to the 2020 model. In addition, it is reasonable to think that a new dedicated oximeter comparable to current medical devices may also be required for FDA approval.
Better ECG to come too
The next update to watchOS could bring improved ECG functionality. At the moment, the ECG function of Apple Watch Series 5 and Apple Watch Series 4 does not work well when you exercise: if your heart rate exceeds 100 to 120 beats per minute, the ECG reading will not be reliable .
According to the revision of the 9to5mac code, this limitation will soon be eliminated either by new software or by a new combination of hardware and software.
Whether it’s the Apple Watch Series 6 or simply a software upgrade available for older models, Apple remains on course to transform its goal into human health.