Google also said that two important signs widely used to determine health and wellness—heart rate and respiratory rate, can now be assessed using a mobile phone. It also confirmed that these functions will be included in the Google Fit app for Pixel phones beginning upcoming month.
For measurement of respiratory rate, it requires a smartphone camera and a computer vision technique called optical flow. This will detect respiratory rate through subtle movements in the chest.
It utilizes a smartphone camera for the heart rate to identify the slight changes in color in the fingertip that occur. The color change occurs as freshly oxygenated blood passes into the body through your heart.
“Google Fit will allow you to measure your heart rate and respiratory rate using just your phone’s camera. These features will be available in the Google Fit app for Pixel phones, with plans to expand to more Android devices”. Said Shwetak Patel. He is the director of Health Technologies, Google Health.
More About Measuring Heart And Respiratory Rate:
Patel wrote a Google blog post on Thursday. “Starting next month, Google Fit will allow you to measure your heart rate and respiratory rate using just your phone’s camera. These features will be available in the Google Fit app for Pixel phones, with plans to expand to more Android devices”. He wrote on the blog.
“To measure your respiratory rate, you just need to place your head and upper torso in view of your phone’s front-facing camera and breathe normally. To measure your heart rate, simply place your finger on the rear-facing camera lens”. Patel added.
Although these metrics are not intended for medical diagnosis or to assess medical conditions, Patel hoped that they could be helpful in simply monitoring. It will enhance day-to-day health for users that use the Google Fit app.
Photoplethysmography (PPG) is the process used to detect the heart rate, which is normally obtained using advanced sensors.
According to the Fitzpatrick scale, Google already has undergone initial clinical verification to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed algorithm among people with various skin types. In all classes, the algorithm is said to be effective within two percent on average.
“We developed both features — and completed initial clinical studies to validate them — so they work in a variety of real-world conditions and for as many people as possible. For example, Our heart rate algorithm relies on approximating blood flow from color changes in someone’s fingertip. It has to account for factors such as lighting, skin tone, age, and more in order to work for everyone”. Patel said.