Wearing fitness trackers can be frustrating and not exactly stylish, so what if your smartphone was just as accurate at monitoring your heart? New research has found it might just be possible from your pocket.
Scientists at the MIT’s Media Lab have been experimenting with the accelerometer and gyroscope in your phone to find the small vibrations and movements of your body. It’ll read the rise and fall of your chest when breathing, for instance.
The group created an Android app for a variety of phones and experimented on twelve different subjects.
A long way off
Those who used them had to keep the phone in their pocket or bag and it managed to track both the heart rate and breathing of each subject. Heart rates were only off by a beat per a minute and the breathing rate was off by about a quarter of a breath per a minute.
That means there’s work to be done – but with a few more tweaks this could be the new way to track your exercise. It could even mean the fitness trackers strapped to our wrists become redundant.
Plus it needs to be rolled out to a few more phones – at the moment the most modern phone in the trial is the Samsung Galaxy S4.