Apple Watch "bug" turns out to be intentional


#1

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#2

I’m not actually sure what the point is of measuring heart rate at fixed intervals anyway. If there is a suspicion of anything wrong, you get fitted with an ecg recorder which runs for several days continuously. If not, measuring your resting rate and rate after consistent exercise is likely to be far more useful.


#3

I suspect the measured blood pressure is less accurate (or perhaps more inaccurate is the proper phrase) due to acceleration, muscle movement, etc., when the arm is moving. Usually you’re supposed to sit still for five minutes before taking a measurement (at least with the usual manual upper/arm pressure cuff method). Wrist measurement of bp is suspect anyway; at least it was. Pressure in the circulatory system is highly dependent on position, and at the wrist it’s different from what it is in the upper arm (where most all the blood pressure statistics were taken). Perhaps they’ve been correlated better since.


#4

Maybe someone would be doing vigorous physical activity using only one hand?


#5

Yeah its a “feature”.


#6

“Oh yeah, we totally meant to do that.”


#7


#8

Heartrate is a pretty good proxy for level of exertion, and that daily calendar provides rather a lot of useful insight for people who would like to be more active.


#9

Misread heart rate as blood pressure. Must get eyes checked.


#10

Only in a healthy person, who probably doesn’t need to obsess over it anyway.


#11

but now that Apple has added it to one of their products, people will obsess over it…


#12

PPG is heavily affected by movement, you can do some filtering to remove the artifacts but in general the best thing to do is wait for a gap in the motion. I guess the watch is saving processing power and battery life by not bothering to work on the noisy signals.


#13

Probably the accuracy goes way down if the arm is moving… Thereby giving erroneous numbers. “Feature removed” is a better headline than “watch lies” .


#14

Um? Lots of healthy people are staying that way through always-on activity measurement. Not for everyone, but pretty common in my circles.


#15

I don’t get this gizmo, I don’t get it at all. As I understand it, they are repeatedly shooting themselves right in the selling points.

  • It’s a watch …but it has an 8-hour battery life, so you can’t even set an alarm on it to wake you up after an 8-hour sleep, or to tell you to go home after an 8-hour shift, because it won’t last long enough. But your terrorist Casio totally can.
  • It’s a programmable watch …but they don’t allow apps for it to actually tell the time.
  • It’s a heart rate monitor …but only at fixed 10-min periods instead of constantly, and now only when you’re stationary, which is, uh, sort of exactly not the point of ongoing heart rate monitoring.
  • It has a screen that will let you see useful stuff …but it can’t even show a single tweet.
  • It’s on your wrist so you don’t need your phone …but all the networking is done through your phone, so you still have to carry it.

What’s the target market here? What’s its killer app? What do people use it for?


#16

I don’t have an apple watch or phone but I use my pebble to show me alerts from my phone, particularly when the phone is muted.


#17

People who have to have everything Apple… and that’s a pretty big market…


#18

Given that Apple appears to have struggled mightily to keep the battery life within the ‘remotely acceptable’ range(and won’t have an easier time once less competent 3rd parties and aging Li-ion batteries start to take their toll); it wouldn’t surprise me if they are also looking to chop anything they can that consumes power.

They certainly can’t kill the feature entirely(the dedicated a lot of volume to the sensors, and it’s one of the advertised features); but if they can increase the amount of time it spends at idle, they likely win back a few precious milliamp-hours.


#19

I’m sure you can find, oh, one or two or twenty obsessively detailed reviews out there to draw conclusions from, if you’re really interested in finding out.

To me it looks like it’s currently a pretty good Pebble (notifications) + Fitbit (fitness monitor) mashup if you’re in the very specific Venn niche that actually benefits from both.

For most of us, I get the feeling this is v0.2 technology at best and we’re better off waiting a bit for the more mature iterations with nicer designs, better battery life, and killerer killer apps (apple pay? health? who knows what conveniences those clever developers are going to come up with).

I’m glad the smartwatch concept is going to improve by leaps and bounds now that Apple has mainstreamed it and forced competition to catch up, as it did with smartphones and tablets. But I know I’m waiting for some next model.


#20

You’ve underestimated the battery life-- it’s eighteen hours. You can choose a watch face to use, but you can’t design your own, presumably because of battery life concerns. In six months, maybe we’ll see programmers complaining that they the store keeps rejecting their faces because of the really tight power budget.

The watch lets you keep a phone in a place not immediately at hand-- in a purse, or briefcase, or backpack, or your desk drawere (within range). I suppose it all depends on your lifestyle as to whether this makes a difference.

As for tweeting. I suppose twitter’s to blame. Or perhaps the typeface changes to fit in thr extra characters. Requires testing, not extrapolation from screenshots.

There’s also a workout mode that continuously reads your pulse. Use the workout app to start recording

I’m not getting one, because of the expense… last time I went into the Apple Store, the kind employees helped me figure out that my ipad3 is obsolete. Sorry guys, my Apple budget was spen on my imac…