Home Apple Apple Watch Rumor claims watchOS 7 could help Apple Watch detect panic attacks

Rumor claims watchOS 7 could help Apple Watch detect panic attacks

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watchOS 7 could help Apple Watch detect panic attacks

Rumor claims watchOS 7 could help Apple Watch detect panic attacks

Leaker Jon Prosser has once again reiterated that the next Apple Watch will be able to detect panic attacks. This will be made possible by the new blood oxygen sensor that Apple plans on debuting on the wearable. He detailed this while speaking on the latest episode of the “Geared Up” podcast.

The system will use a new blood oxygen sensor, coupled with specialized software, to detect when a user is hyperventilating, Prosser said. Hyperventilation, an elevated heart rate and shortness of breath are symptoms of panic attacks that can be quantified by existing or rumored Watch hardware.

This is not the first time that we have heard rumors of Apple bringing panic attack detection and other forms of mental health tracking to the smartwatch. As for the panic attack detection, it will detect an upcoming panic or anxiety attack and then offer users breathing guidance so that they can control it. The wearable will also keep a history of all such stress-related issues thereby helping doctors and health professionals to treat the patients better.

watchOS 7 could help Apple Watch detect panic attacks

Jon Prosser does claim that while he hopes the feature is released this year, there is a possibility that it could be delayed to next year. He also notes that if the panic attack detection feature relies on the new blood oxygen sensor, Apple will not talk about it at WWDC. Instead, it will do so when it announces the Apple Watch Series 6 later in the fall.

Apple Watch’s plethysmograph heart rate sensor technology, which debuted with the first Watch model in 2015, is technically capable of measuring blood oxygen levels. Why the company has not elected to take advantage of the ability is not known, but the decision could be related to system accuracy or regulatory approval.

Prosser’s claims expand on reports in March that pegged Apple to integrate a working blood oxygen sensor and updated ECG hardware in a so-called “Apple Watch Series 6” device later this year. A supposed leak last week hinted at the inclusion of a pulse oximeter and the ability to detect “mental health abnormalities.”

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