Apple Watch ECG App — 6 Months Later

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Back in September for 2018 — and wow but does that already seem like a technology lifetime ago! — Apple’s chief operating officer and head of Watch and Health products — took to the stage at the companies annual September event to announce Apple Watch Series 4 and its bold new edge-to-edge display.

But he also announced something else: Irregular heartbeat notifications and, for the first time ever in a direct-to-consumer device, the ability to take an electrocardiogram. In a watch. On your freaking wrist.

It shipped in the U.S. on December 6. It shipped in much of the E.U. and in Hong Kong on March 27. And today, it’s shipping in Canada.

But, as always, there’s a lot more to this story.





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47 thoughts on “Apple Watch ECG App — 6 Months Later

  1. The health aspects of the Apple Watch are the only reason I bought one. I couldn't find a decent step counter that had heart rate and integrated with my iPhone, when I bought the original Apple Watch. Now there are plenty of choices, so I applaud Apple for keeping the heart monitoring ball rolling.

  2. I bought my apple watch in Canada. With the recent watchOS update, i now begin to see the ecg app on my watch, and with the iOS update, the health app now prompts me to setup the ecg app..but after putting my bday, it still says that the app is not available in my region..i am currently in Turks and Caicos islands..but i thought the lock is just related to point of purchase?? What’s happening? Anyone has the same problem? Any help? Thanks!

  3. Richie, we are truly down under when it comes to the ECG availability in Australia, we must way down on the list ! Very frustrating.

  4. Yes it's awesome…they can now let the CIA trigger a heart attack (from the comfort of their own offices)…who needs killer drones 😉

  5. Almost a year after and still not available in Japan. And no idea of the progress made. In what step are we to get it? Are they even doing anything here? I got the watch for this feature so far haven't been using it even one time.

  6. Would like to hear thoughts about a new home pod. I wish there would be a kind of audiophile and bigger one for even better sound. And there should be a physical switch to turn out the microphones. What is your opinion?

  7. What a crock. Rene ought to be ashamed of himself for this gee whiz video of his. The pedometer on the watch is nowhere near as accurate as a dedicated one and the ECG isn't close to accurate either. 

    I take my watch in, send the heart rate that the watch measured to my physician and instead of 65 which is what it said the bpm she measures it was at 75 bpm. The pedometer is always off by at least 100 steps compared to my Fitbit Charge 3. 

    What the hell Rene? As far as the health features of the watch the product is pure garbage from my experience and I've got four other friends who have had similar issues with it. 

    This is dangerous, a public safety issue to be honest when people give a solid thumbs up to a product without any formal medical training. A dedicated device for the steps and a visit to a physician should be the only way we should take an ECG seriously.

  8. I’m impressed with Apple’s “good citizen” approach to global rollout, respecting local regulations. It’s a watch. No doubt, Apple could have just pushed it out globally, ignoring medical regulators, and just paying fines as they go. You know, the “ask forgiveness” instead of “ ask for permission” ethos adopted by most unicorn startups ( Uber, Airbnb, Zenefits, etc. ). Instead, they took the time and made the effort to follow the rules. Good on Apple.

  9. Apple do incredible things. This, and that amazing Keynote with the quad in his chair arranging a day out with his mate blow me away, and it's why I'm still with Apple after 20 years. I just wish they'd stay out of politics. Let Google and Facebook and Twitter self immolate, stay out of our minds and just innovate, Apple. It's what you do best. I don't want "expert curation", I prefer to make up my own mind with ALL the info presented, not the massaged version.

    Steve would have understood. Tim doesn't.

    Apple do incredible things nonetheless.

  10. Australia still waiting for ECG, stupid Australian government health department, if they don’t approve it when the rest of the world is we are going to look more backwards than normal 🙄

  11. Mexico still not included. ECG should be open for everyone because of its utility. Put one million terms and conditions. But do it. I bought two apple watches for my parents, still waiting to use it 100% almost a year ago…

  12. I'm so disappointed with my Apple Watch. I had an Android Watch before and loved the look and customisation options. I find the Apple Watch boring and ugly, but my wife loved hers so I thought I'd try it out.

    I mainly bought the Apple Watch for the highly hyped ECG feature. Sure, it wasn't available immediately but all signs pointed to it being available by the end of 2018. It's getting close to one year now and it's still not available in Australia.

    I'm already shopping around for my next WearOS watch. I have a lot of Apple devices, but this watch is by far the most disappointing.

  13. Rene Ritchie just curious, was this supposed to be in today’s update? I did the update and it still says “not available in your region” – I am in BC Canada.

  14. I am running IOS13 beta with the redesigned health app. I can't find the ecg start up process in the health app to allow me to take my first ecg. I am running both the newest watchOS and iOS13 beta. Has anyone else come across this?

  15. “Marketing, engineers & customers” What about Designers? Nah, they don’t mater at all… it’s not like they conduct research, make the product functional and intuitive besides making it beautiful. What a joke!

  16. Can you talk about the Apple loyalty decline? I'm curious to know why, is it because of what reviewers are saying about Apple products, user experience(which I doubt), or something to do with China?… Or was it hacked by android knights to create false data? 😑

  17. Hi Rene, I personally love your stuff, and stared watching you just a few months ago. But watching this video I just wanted to give you a tip (being a analytical person that learns from a visual more than audible). When you are mentioning a lot of numbers (like what you do between the 4 and 5 minute mark in your video), please give some visual numbers as well. It would really help understanding the next few points you are making in the video. Other than that. Love your stuff, and please keep posting regularly!

  18. Cardiologist’s scientific analysis of the Apple Watch
    , just for those who might be interested.

  19. Not happy with your comment about "reactionary sensationalised coverage" about the dangers of people having an ECG on their wrists. It smacks of Apple right and everyone else wrong. There are genuine concerns about wasting the precious time of medical professionals – they save lives, Apple Watch does not.

  20. CuriosityStream would be more useful if it included quizzes part way through and at the end of each documentary to fortify what you’ve learned…

  21. You often say „series 1“, does this also include the original Apple Watch or only the series 1? (Maybe I am wrong, but I thought that they are slightly different)

  22. I think of the Apple Watch as a product focused on well-being. Not a fitness product, not a health product, not even a wellness product, but a well-being product. I find that’s the only category that englobes health, fitness, enjoyment features like music and photos, and peace-of-mind features like fall-detection and quick emergency calls. Even drawing satisfaction from the plethora of interchangeable watch bands can fit in there. Enjoy well-being with  Watch.

  23. As someone with heart problems, but not constant ones that can be measured during a doctors appointment, this has been invaluable (possibly a life saver?). I've been able to take printed pages during episodes of my condition to my doctor. In fact, my cardiologist said this is possibly "the best tool for the job".

    If anyone from Apple reads this – my sincerest thanks to you all.

  24. I don’t have an Apple Watch, but am thinking of getting one. I am already diagnosed with genetic heart failure (I get muddled about the exact term) so I think it would be helpful, but am a bit worried it would just keep telling me to see my doctor when I am already on medication. They can’t operate on me unfortunately.

    So I really like the idea, but I’m in two minds about the practice

    I’m also based in the UK

    Basically I don’t know enough about it, but interesting video

  25. I can't imagine Apple watch giving out false readings and doctors giving patients pills they don't need (sarcasm). The Apple Drug Company is fast approaching and big pharma is in on it. I am very skeptical because it is hard to think that Apple has just the best and purest intentions here when it all boils down to money in the end. People in business are rarely for the greater good, they are for the greater greed and history has shown this time and again.

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