Apple recently launched the Apple Watch Series 6, a smart new watch that received a pulse oximeter to determine blood oxygen saturation. The Washington Post editor conducted testing using a medical pulse oximeter and concluded that this feature was “largely useless”. According to Geoffrey A. Fowler, the Apple Watch Series 6 pulse oximeter does not actually work.
Sometimes the new Apple Watch Series 6 reports that my lungs and heart are the epitome of health, pumping blood that is 100% oxygenated. In other cases, it reports that I have such a low oxygen level in my blood that I may be suffering from emphysema. Within a few days, comparing Apple Watch with my FDA approved finger oximeter, I found that Apple Watch readings most often differ by 2-3%. Sometimes the measurements are the same, and sometimes the deviation is 7%.
He also mentioned that some problems may be related to the Solo Loop strap. If you tighten the strap tighter, the error can be reduced, but the strap will leave traces on the user’s hand.
It is worth noting that the Apple Watch Series 6 pulse oximeter is not officially intended for medical use. Apple Watch Series 6 was defended by Oliver Haslam from iMore:
I find it hard to believe that someone is tying Apple Watch to my wrist and waiting to get the same readings as a specially designed FDA approved oximeter. Do I agree that it may not work accurately. Yes, but it’s crazy to call it “mostly useless”. It is a very useful function to get an overall picture of health. Do not expect him to tell you if you need urgent medical help. Apple does not promise it.