Health analytics company Somatix recently introduced its latest solution in the form of SmokeBeat, a smartwatch app designed to help people quit smoking and provide them with in-depth insights into the damaging effects of their habit. The service hasn’t been commercialized and there are currently no such plans for it, though it enjoyed a successful trial run in November that left Prof. Reuven Dar of the Tel Aviv University School of Psychological Sciences “impressed,” as revealed by a recent recap of the trial published in peer-reviewed journal Nicotine and Tobacco Research from Oxford University Press. Following initial testing, researchers involved in the project concluded SmokeBeat was able to detect when people were smoking in over 80 percent of cases and had a marginal number of false positives.
Such capabilities provide a solid base for the rest of the platform’s functionalities designed to analyze one’s smoking habits and present users with data in regards to how much time and money they’ve spent on cigarettes and to what degree has the habit altered their everyday routines. The experimental version of the service still asks for confirmation that you’re smoking whenever it detects a motion it interprets as being associated with having a cigarette, though it’s currently unclear whether the finished platform will also require such verifications or if it will at least provide users with the option of turning them off while risking reduced accuracy of the data they’re presented with. The app utilizes various smartwatch sensors in order to identify specific hand-to-mouth gestures usually associated with smoking and is supposedly able to differentiative between such activities and motions related to biting nails, eating, and shaving so as to minimize the chance of false positives, according to the New York-based company.
The platform also supports custom goals and progress tracking, as well as a digital currency-based reward system meant to incentivize users to reduce the number of cigarettes they smoke on a daily basis and ultimately kick the habit for good. The most obvious limitation of the solution is the fact that it requires users to either wear a smartwatch on their dominant hand or make a conscious effort to hold a cigarette in their non-dominant one, which may require some getting used to for many. Refer to the source link below to request more details in the form of a SmokeBeat brochure, though the wearable app still doesn’t have a firm availability window attached to it and is only meant to “support smoking cessation treatment under the supervision of a healthcare professional,” Somatix says.