What health technology is available?


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What health technology is available?

smart phone with health related icons surrounding it

What's coming up?

In this activity you’ll find out about the kinds of gadgets that are available to help you monitor your health. You’ll also find out about what health activities they monitor, and how some devices are more useful than others.

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Your smartphone

You can start monitoring and tracking your health with just your smartphone and its in-built health app. Your phone has sensors that can be used for health tracking and can count your steps and do some basic sleep monitoring.

The data your phone collects is interpreted, and depending on the app you use, can be uploaded to the cloud. You can learn more about the cloud in the What is the cloud? course.

smart phone sending sleep information to the cloud
smart watch on a wrist

A smartwatch provides more accurate data

If you choose to get a smartwatch, you can use this to collect more accurate data, because you wear the watch close to your body, and it has extra sensors, including a heart rate monitor.

A smartwatch has its own built-in software to do things like detect what activity you are doing, such as walking, cycling, or even sleeping. It also has a touch display so you can tell the watch when you are starting exercise or meditation.

Determining which devices are right for you

More and more devices are becoming available with smartphone connectivity and apps. For example, you can purchase bathroom scales that will upload results to an app via your home Wi-Fi or Bluetooth.

However, health apps also let you enter data such as weight and meals yourself, so it might not be worth spending extra on an app-enabled scale, when your regular scales still work just fine.

smart phone and bathroom scales
smart phone communicating with smart scales

Health devices and sensors need an app

All these devices need an app to make sense of the data they collect. However, each device (such as your smartwatch) can work with lots of different apps, from your phone’s health suite to standalone apps such as those for walking, workouts, yoga or meditation.

Each device can be used in many ways by the apps you download for it, and devices will show which apps they can work with on their website or packaging.

Well done!

This is the end of the What health technology is available? activity. You’ve learned what devices you can use to help monitor and track your health.

Up next, you can find out How apps and the cloud help with your health and pair with your devices to analyse the data they gather.

smart devices surrounded by apps