Heart Rate monitoring

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by honglong1976, Apr 26, 2017.

  1. honglong1976 macrumors 6502a

    honglong1976

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    I love my apple watch but the heart rate monitor is poor. Taking a reading every 10 mins is pretty pointless. I walk home look at my HR, it's 70. I run home (without using the activity app) look and it's 70. I sit down, eat my dinner, it's 140.

    I got a Fitbit Blaze. It records the HR every 5 seconds and 1 sec when recording an activity. The HR is much better in that respect.

    Using the Blaze at the moment. Anyone else find HR annoying? Apart from that and the lack of sleep tracking. It's awesome!
     
  2. honglong1976 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    honglong1976

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    Jul 12, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    anything else use another device due to the Apple Watch HR problems? Garmin, Fitbit?
     
  3. arkitect macrumors 601

    arkitect

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    Sep 5, 2005
    Location:
    Bath, United Kingdom
    #3
    I don't own an Apple Watch, so strictly I am not answering your question. :)

    But I do use a Heart Rate monitor during exercise.

    Wahoo Tickr

    In fact the AW's poor performance in the HR area has been a major reason stopping me from buying one.
     
  4. Newtons Apple Suspended

    Newtons Apple

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    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #4
    Garmin Fenix 5 here and zero regrets. It is no Apple watch but it is nice to actually hear my iPhone 7+ notifications again. I still get notification on my Fenix and that was what I like the best about the AW. The HR sensor on the Fenix works for me no matter if tight or loose.

    I use this and could not be more happy. HR sensor on the Fenix 5 works no matter if it is tight or loose.

    The app gives you more information about your run that you could ever need.

    Fenix 5.jpeg
     
  5. Mlrollin91 macrumors G4

    Mlrollin91

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    Nov 20, 2008
    Location:
    Ventura County
    #5
    It might be possible that your watch is either too tight or too loose. This can cause it not to get a good reading. I typically don't have problems with workouts and getting my heart rate. Occasionally it does get stuck, but either pausing the workout or readjusting on my wrist will get it to go again.

    Just incase you haven't read this yet:
    https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204666
     
  6. Totally macrumors 6502a

    Totally

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    Feb 22, 2012
    Location:
    West Coast = Best Coast
    #6
    Can't comment on AW, but just so you know - by far and away the best heart rate monitor is the one you wear on your chest if you really care about accuracy.
     
  7. honglong1976 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    honglong1976

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #7
    Thanks. I always get a reading and it's accurate on the Apple Watch. It's just not frequent enough. It's usually every 5-10 mins. On my Fitbit blaze it's every 5 secs. I get 5 days with the HR on all the time as well so it's can't affect the battery that much.
     
  8. Julien macrumors G3

    Julien

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Atlanta
    #8
    I use a Garmin 620 for all cardio exercises and my :apple:Watch as my general fitness tracker.
     
  9. Mlrollin91 macrumors G4

    Mlrollin91

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    #9
    Well if you are not running an exercise, its only suppose to be once every 5-10 minutes to reduce battery usage. When the watch first came out, it gave a reading every 5 minutes, but Apple cut that down to 10 minutes. I spoke with engineers for months before they finally confirmed that that was the new intended behavior.
     
  10. ahostmadsen macrumors 6502a

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    Dec 28, 2009
    #10
    I'm not convinced. Is there any official information? When I check the HR readings in the health app, it seems the watch measures at variable intervals (during non-workout). Sometimes there is 1-2 minutes between readings. Sometimes there is nearly 10 minutes. Without doing a quantitative analysis, it seems the watch determines the interval adaptively some way (perhaps based on activity?), and reads HR at least every 10 minutes.
     
  11. Julien macrumors G3

    Julien

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    Atlanta
    #11
    ;)
    https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204666
     
  12. ahostmadsen macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    #12
    But that doesn't say anything about the claimed 10 minutes. Again, when looking at the interval between measurements in the health app, it's always less than 10 minutes for me, sometimes 1 minute.

    Anyway, the above is ambiguous. It says 'Apple Watch measures your heart rate throughout the day when you’re still.' Just above they say that the watch measures heart rate continuous during workout. 'Still' may therefore be interpreted, based on that context, as 'not doing a workout.' It does not say: 'when you don't move.'
     
  13. Mlrollin91 macrumors G4

    Mlrollin91

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    #13
    Yes. It's on Apple's support website. On my phone right now so I can't get it.

    It's suppose to read it once every 10 minutes as long as your arm isn't moving about. Pretty much it only reads it while resting. This was a huge deal summer of 2015. There were dozens of threads and I had actually contacted Tim Cook's office about it and received a response.

    I had contact with an entire team of engineers for over 2 months and then they finally said "oh that change was intential". If someone else could find the article it would be much appreciated. Otherwise I will later this evening.
     
  14. Jon from HR macrumors newbie

    Jon from HR

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    Apr 18, 2017
    Location:
    Monrovia, CA
    #14
    I feel it takes a measurement when ever this is significant change in Heartrate, or when activity stops or starts, but that's just a shot in the dark. My :apple:Watch too records measurements at odd intervals.

    Edit: As a side note, my measurements are hardly ever under 80 ppm. o_O
     
  15. ahostmadsen macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    #15
    But perhaps that changed in later versions of WatchOS? Clearly it's a software thing.

    Again, looking at the health app, it seems that watch measures at least every 10 min, but often much more often.
     
  16. Jon from HR macrumors newbie

    Jon from HR

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    Apr 18, 2017
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    #16
    Perhaps we can confirm by comparing battery life usage between the different versions of WatchOS?
     
  17. Mlrollin91 macrumors G4

    Mlrollin91

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    #17
    Ever since watchOS 1.1 this new system has taken place. It's all outlined in the support article. It's about 5-10 minutes depending on if you are moving or not. If it senses movement it will quickly take a reading so it's not lost.
     
  18. Newtons Apple Suspended

    Newtons Apple

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    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #18
    The Apple Watch HR sensors must use a lot of power as I have Fitbit device that are much smaller that do your HR constantly. Only time my Fitbit would turn off the sensor would be about 30 seconds after I removed it to go to sleep.
     
  19. TwoBytes macrumors 68020

    TwoBytes

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    #19
    Fitbit does all day and night monitoring with a battery that lasts me a week.. Apple need to take notice of this for the AW4. If you do some heavy HIT workout where you all out run for 5 mins, I wouldn't want to use an AW to miss that hard work. 10 mins is a big window in HR monitoring.
     
  20. ahostmadsen macrumors 6502a

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    Dec 28, 2009
    #20
    As discussed, 10min seems incorrect, it is more frequent. Anyway, during workout Apple Watch measures continuously.
     
  21. daflake macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 8, 2008
    #21
    The wife is having the same issue with her AW. She also has a Garmin Fenix 3 and actually prefers it for workouts. The implementation of the heart rate monitor is just not that great if you are serious about tracking your workouts.
     
  22. honglong1976 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    honglong1976

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #22
    Yes, it's not always 10 mins.

    I checked my heart rate in health. Here are how time between checks.

    2 mins
    10 mins
    2 mins
    16 mins
    12 mins
    18 mins
    6 mins
    8 mins
    2 mins

    Looks like it picks up the HR data depending on movement.

    My resting HR with most apps using the Apple Watch is about 67-69, with the Fitbit it's 60-62. That's a big difference and I assume the Fitbit is more accurate due to the constant 24/7 monitoring.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 28, 2017 ---
    5 days of 24/7 HR monitoring. Apple Watch is has an incredibly high HR light. Maybe they should reduce the power to it.
     
  23. Julien, Apr 28, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2017

    Julien macrumors G3

    Julien

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    Jun 30, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #23
    No it doesn't say 10 minutes but this is the 'official' word on how often it reads. And if you read the whole paragraph you see that Apple clearly indicates that there is probably not a hard 10 minute rule since you MUST be still for it to read according to Apple.

    Also the "When you use the Workout app, Apple Watch measures your heart rate continuously during the workout." has a hyperlink (blue) that explains you must have the Workout app running and doing a workout for continuous HR reading while active. Here is after clicking the hyperlink.

    https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204523

    EDIT: The reason :apple:Watch only takes HR readings while you are still is because in the medical/fitness/health industries your resting HR is the most important measurement. Since the :apple:Watch doesn't offer full time HR monitoring it is best to only take resting HR measurements (just like in a doctors visit or fitness assessment) to help determine problems like an elevated resting HR.
     
  24. Mlrollin91 macrumors G4

    Mlrollin91

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    Nov 20, 2008
    Location:
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    #24
    Thank you for posting this. It seems they must have update the support document from the last time I read it when it actually gave a number. I guess they removed that and tweaked the reading times a bit, but as I mentioned earlier, it still only takes it when still or not moving.
     

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