As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, a new smartwatch emerged to help people identify the disease. And the best part is it can detect COVID-19 before showing symptoms.
Although the first vaccines have already begun to be administered, unfortunately, the Christmas period has left us with a new wave of COVID-19 infections. Even though we are taking extreme precautions, one of the biggest challenges in detecting COVID-19 is that many people are asymptomatic, which means that they may not have any symptoms but they are still contagious.
Smartwatch can detect COVID-19 before showing symptoms
However, even though the technology has failed to catch on with tracking applications, recent studies seem to have found that smartwatches could play an important and valuable role in helping detect COVID-19 early, even before most of the major symptoms are present.
The first, titled “Warrior Watch” by researchers at New York’s Mount Sinai Hospital focused on tracking a group of 297 health care workers between April 29 and September 29. Using an Apple Watch equipped with special applications that measured changes in their heart rate variability (HRV), it was possible to demonstrate that “the smartwatch showed significant changes in HRV metrics up to seven days before people had a positive nasal swab confirming a COVID-19 infection,” as study author Dr. Robert P. Hirten explains.
On the other hand, another similar study conducted by Stanford University found that participants using a variety of tracers from Garmin, Fitbit, Apple, and others found that 81% of patients who tested positive for coronavirus had changes in their resting heart rate as much as nine and a half days before the onset of the remaining symptoms.
So medical researchers are not alone in realizing that the first symptoms of COVID-19 can be detected with a smartwatch. A company called NeuTigers, born out of research at Princeton University, has developed an artificial intelligence product called CovidDeep that can help identify people with the virus in clinical or residential settings. Tested on clinical-grade patients, this AI proved to be able to detect COVID-19 at a 90% success rate, more accurate than typical temperature tests.
Even without custom algorithms, an intelligent clock can be useful to detect the COVID-19. The PGA Tour (the Professional Golf Association of America) recently began using Whoop health monitoring bracelets, which enabled them to help player Nick Watney test positive. According to several studies, if our breathing rate increases at night, it could be a possible sign of a condition.