Huawei Blood Pressure Watch is on the Way to Market
As early as May, we revealed that Huawei is developing a smart watch with blood pressure tracking function-now it seems that the company may be about to bring it to the market.
A report from China’s ITHome shows that the Guangdong Food and Drug Administration has approved Huawei’s “ECG and Blood Pressure Recorder”.
Few devices can read blood pressure from the wrist. Samsung Galaxy Watch 3 and Galaxy Watch 4 do have this feature-although Samsung's system needs to be verified by a cuff before use. The watch also needs to be recalibrated regularly.
But now Huawei is advertising for testers, which means that the product may be ready during prime time.
But ITHome reported that Huawei is looking for participants to conduct a study to test blood pressure characteristics. However, the call is a bit strange. The company is looking for "more than 20 people" whose wrist circumference must be more than 200 mm.
This of course is not like the kind of user research that will see FDA or CE approval for cuffless sphygmomanometers-and it certainly makes us more doubtful whether we will see this feature on a global scale anytime soon.
Of course, we assume that a large number of trials have already been conducted to obtain approval from Chinese (regional) regulatory agencies at the beginning.
However, it still makes us strange to see a company attractive to testers with such a small wrist size. From the context, the average female wrist circumference is 178 mm-much slimmer than Huawei's test requirements.
In a chat with Fitbit Chief Technology Officer Eric Friedman (Eric Friedman), he said that blood pressure technology is difficult to verify due to differences in variables such as wrist size, weight, race, and skin color.
“You have to get it working at scale across all kinds of physiological body types, different profusion levels, things like that. You also have to make sure it works in kind of non-controlled settings,” Friedman told us.
In short: it can be harder to make technology work for everyone than to prove it works. This means experimenting with hundreds of people.
So what does this leave us? Well, the regulatory approval of smartwatch blood pressure is a big story-but there are many caveats here.
We are skeptical that we will see this soon-but we are happy to see Huawei do it.