Samsung and Microsoft Patent Heart-Friendly Smartwatch Technologies – Could This Be a New Challenge for Apple Watch?

By Novak Bozovic / July 6, 2020

Apple’s smartwatch has dominated the global market-share ever since the original Apple Watch launched in 2015. At the moment, Apple’s biggest competitors are brands such as Samsung, Garmin, and Huawei. However, none of those brands can compete with Apple when it comes to delicate tracking of health-related metrics. Still, we’re starting to see indications that Apple’s competitors are working hard on developing technologies that could challenge future Apple Watch generations.

Back in 2018, Apple introduced its Apple Watch Series 4 with a heavy emphasis on health-related features. More precisely, we’re talking about the ECG functionality, which further evolved with the 2019 Apple Watch generation (Series 5). It didn’t take long for Samsung to respond by introducing that same functionality to the Galaxy Watch Active2. However, that same smartwatch also comes with the ability to measure blood pressure (with a varied level of success). This puts Samsung ahead of Apple in terms of measuring blood pressure since the latest Apple Watch measures only heart rate instead.

As now, as reported by PatentlyApple, Samsung has patented another technology related to heart-friendly features of its upcoming products. We’re talking about a separate device capable of doing ECG tests, serving as a clip connected to the user’s clothes. This would mean that an accessory could be used with Samsung’s smartwatches, providing more precise information to consumers monitoring their heart health. However, being a standalone device, it would involve carrying yet another wearable, which tells us that this technology still has plenty of room to grow.

Samsung Patent ECG Accessory Device

Image Courtesy of Patently Mobile.

Last week, Microsoft also patented its take on helping individuals keep track of their health. We’re talking about a “wearable pulse-pressure-wave-sensing device” that could offer a non-intrusive way to measure a pulse pressure wave that can travel through an artery. More precisely, this device was described as a smartwatch capable of using an interface to display information to the wearer. In other words, Microsoft isn’t describing a display-free fitness band via this patent – it’s focusing on a smartwatch instead.

Microsoft Smartwatch Hearth Features Patent

Image Courtesy of Patently Mobile.

As you can see, we’re talking about patents granted to Samsung and Microsoft. This isn’t always a clear indication of future products, as companies tend to patent their inventions to prevent their competitors from adopting those same technologies. However, one thing is clear. Both Samsung and Microsoft are investing heavily in developing smartwatch-like features as a direct result of the features found in Apple’s smartwatch.

And when it comes to this year’s Apple Watch, not much is known in terms of its hardware. However, we know that watchOS 7 continues to evolve to include new fitness- and health-related features. As earlier rumors were proven to be accurate, the company will introduce sleep tracking in watchOS 7, which won’t be an exclusive feature reserved only for this year’s Apple Watch.

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