It’s been over two years since Samsung first announced that its Galaxy Watch would be able to measure people’s blood pressure. The feature is available in a number of countries, including South Korea, but not in the United States — the company is still awaiting Food and Drug Administration clearance. In the meantime, other smartwatch companies have started experimenting with blood pressure tech in a bid for monitors on their devices. Fitbit announced a study trialling a blood pressure monitor in April, and Apple is reportedly working on its own version, as well.
The analysis, published in July, found that the blood pressures calculated by the Samsung device had “moderate to strong agreement” with pressures measured by an FDA-approved cuff. The results were about as close together as the results from two different FDA-approved cuffs were each other, Mendes says. The results held for people of varying skin tones and ages.
It’s important to get right — maybe more important than something like heart rate, Cohen says. “High blood pressure is such a major risk factor for stroke, major cardiac events, and kidney disease,” she says. “It’s so, so important that we get it right, because if devices are giving you an inaccurate reading, you can get very false reassurance that your blood pressure is normal.”
See Why smartwatch-measured blood pressure still isn’t ‘ready for primetime’
The future of blood pressure tech still needs to prove itself.