In short, the Apple Watch's heart rate monitor is accurate enough for the majority of consumers, particularly for fitness goals. On the medical side, there are still concerns about the data.
It was cleared by the FDA for its precision. Despite that, studies have suggested that the Apple Watch's accuracy is less than 50-percent. The Apple Watch tracks heart rate using photoplethysmography. While this sounds complicated, it just means it uses light to track your heart rate.
Things dropped off for the commercial fitness bands, but it was the Apple Watch that maintained the most accuracy, managing around 91%, beating the Mio Fuse by a nose. The Fitbit Charge HR and Basis Peak had around 84% and 83% accuracy, respectively.
The Apple Watch has the most accurate heart-rate monitor according to new research.
Heart rate readouts were recorded at rest, during each speed, and after the treadmill test. Two of the devices, the Apple Watch and the Mio Fuse, were accurate about 91% of the time. The other two, the Fitbit Charge HR and the Basis Peak, were accurate about 84% and 83% of the time, respectively, the researchers found.
Overall, the chest strap was almost as good as the EKG, measuring 99% accuracy, which isn't too surprising as both technologies work the same way, capturing electrical activity directly from the heart.
Recently, researchers at the University of Zaragoza in Spain published a paper showing that RR intervals extracted from the Apple Watch while using the Breathe app, are indeed very accurate (Hernando et al., “Validation of the Apple Watch for Heart Rate Variability Measurements during Relax and Mental Stress in Healthy
They reported a trivial underestimation of the mean HR from the Apple Watch compared to an ECG (1 beat. min −1 ) with the 95% LoA being –10 to 7 beats. min −1 . The Apple Watch was the most accurate among the four devices at low exercise intensity.
Apple Watch takes regular background heart rate measurements, including if it is worn during sleep. However, it will not specifically report your rate as recorded during sleep, nor do the built-in apps on Apple Watch (any model) currently include sleep tracking features.
The accuracy of the wearables at detecting baseline heart rate within five bpm was 100 percent, 100 percent and 94 percent for Apple, Samsung and Fitbit, respectively.
Heart Rate Monitor Both the Garmin Forerunner 55 and the Apple Watch 3 have wrist-based heart rate monitors that track your heart rate at rest and during runs. Wrist-based heart rate monitors are known to be less accurate. The Apple Watch 7 has an improved heart rate sensor which makes it more accurate.
The Series 6 is very accurate at tracking metrics on a daily basis, but particularly during workouts. In addition to its inbuilt SPO2 sensor and heart-rate monitor, it also packs a barometer, always-on altimeter, accelerometer, gyroscope, and compass.
The baseline heart rate ranged from 50 beats per minute (bpm) to 101 bpm. The accuracy of the wearables at detecting baseline heart rate within five bpm was 100 percent, 100 percent and 94 percent for Apple, Samsung and Fitbit, respectively.
During each run, the Apple Watch was only off by about one or two beats per minute (BPM) as compared to Polar's monitor. After each run, I also compared average BPM and found the same differences. As for distance, the Series 6 and the Sense were only off from one another by about . 02 to .
In 2019, a cross-section of studies focusing on the Apple Watch heart rate monitor found that the device could measure heart rate “with clinically acceptable accuracy during exercise.” The Apple Watch's heart rate prowess has been shown off in other studies, too.
The Polar H10 is the best heart rate monitor chest strap. It's the most accurate one we've tested. Wahoo's Tickr X (2020) comes second in our list of the best heart rate monitors. The 2020 model is smaller and lighter than the original.