Google Pixel phones are now capable of measuring heart and respiration rate, and this ability is slated to expand to a slew of Android phones in the near future.
Google last month announced that Google Fit app users will soon be able to monitor their heart rate and respiration rate with the help of their phone’s cameras.
On March 8, the search engine giant revealed that it has not started to roll out the aforesaid feature.
The health monitoring features, available on the Google Fit app are currently available only to Google Pixel phone users. The U.S. based tech giant has assured it will soon make the feature available for Android smartphone users as well.
How The New Feature Works
You can measure your heart rate using the Google Fit app using breaking a sweat. All you need to do is to hold your index finger over a Google Pixel phone’s rear camera lens and apply little pressure. The application uses the fingertip pulse to calculate your heart rate.
Users should not rely on these heart rate readings. The phone’s camera is used to take this reading. They are not suitable for medical use. This is also applicable to the respiratory rate calculated using the front-mounted camera.
The Pixel smartphone needs to keep on a steady surface in a bid to measure respiratory rate. The next step involves sitting still in its view.
The Google Fit app then monitors the movement of the user’s chest cavity and generates a report that shows the respiratory rate in breaths per minute.
For accurate results, Google recommends removing hats or masks. It is equally important to take some rest and return to a normal level of breathing if you have just finished a strenuous physical activity such as running, jogging, or exercising.
Privacy For Your Health Log
Heart, as well as respiration rate reading, can be saved in the app in the form of a health log. Google gives its assurance to users who are concerned about the privacy of their health-related information.
Google explained that the video stream used to measure the heart and respiratory rate is processed in real-time and on-device. In other words, users’ data are not uploaded to the company’s servers.
It is worth mentioning here that the Google Fit app will ask for camera access to carry out the function. These recently announced health features that allow users to keep a track of their breathing pattern and heart rate using the Google Fit app are likely to come in handy for fitness enthusiasts.