Just two days after announcing the new Galaxy Gear smartwatches will incorporate heart rate sensors, Samsung revealed their next revision of their flagship Galaxy S smartphone will prominently feature health tracking along with its brand-new companion fitness bracelet, the Gear Fit.
The Gear Fit incorporates a heart rate sensor and a curved, touchscreen AMOLED display that would differentiate itself from nearly every other current fitness tracker on the market, such as Fitbit and Jawbone.
While last year’s Galaxy S4 introduced Samsung’s interests in health/fitness by incorporating a pedometer and an S Health app, the latest Galaxy S5 shows an even stronger commitment. In addition to a totally revamped S Health app, the new Galaxy S5 features a heart rate sensor positioned on the back of the phone. By holding one’s finger over the sensor, the phone will display your heart rate. Health care professionals might find this feature a bit underwhelming, as our own radial arteries can similarly tell us our heart rate, but there are still some potential applications for a spot-check of heart rate as digital metadata.
For more continuous health monitoring, Samsung debuted the Gear Fit, a fitness tracking bracelet that looks similar to a Nike FuelBand or Fitbit Force. However, the Gear Fit significantly one-ups these competitors in features by incorporating a heart rate sensor, a beautiful curved AMOLED touchscreen display, and the ability to display alerts/notifications from your smartphone. The Gear Fit promises 3-4 days of battery life, and reportedly includes activity coaching. The Fit will go on sale April 11th, but no price was announced.
Perusing images from the press release, the Gear Fit’s screen looks stunningly beautiful. By incorporating a heart rate monitor, color AMOLED touch screen, and smart watch features such as notifications, the Fit has the potential to take the top spot in the highly competitive fitness tracker market. We’re eager to see if the Fit delivers on that promise, and whether the Fit offers robust third party support and nutrition/sleep tracking. We’re also intrigued by the Fit’s activity coaching and heart rate sensing, as other fitness trackers with heart rate sensors have been unreliable when tracking heart rate during activity.