Earlier this week, Apple released updates for iOS, macOS, and tvOS. Now, Apple is swooping in with the latest update for the Apple Watch.
And this one is a doozy. The company confirmed earlier today that it would be introducing the ECG app for the Apple Watch Series 4 alongside the rollout of watchOS 5.1.2, and sure enough the wait is finally over. Apple has officially released watchOS 5.1.2 out into the wild.
First things first: To update, watchOS 5.1.2 users will need to make sure that the Apple Watch has at least 50 percent battery life, is connected to its charger, and connected to your iPhone as well. You’ll then need to go into the Watch app on your iOS device, open Settings, then General, and finally “Software Update”. Simply follow the instructions from then on to get your smartwatch up to date.
Now to the good stuff. The most important part of the update is indeed the ECG app, which is available only on the Apple Watch Series 4. This app will make it possible to indicate if a wearer is showing signs of an atrial fibrillation, a serious form of irregular heart rhythm, or a normal sinus rhythm. The Apple Watch Series 4 makes this capable thanks to the new electrodes on the back of the wearable, along with the new Digital Crown.
To help reduce false positives, the ECG app will rely on five tests before it indicates to the wearer if it is reading anything abnormal. That’s because the app will also be taking readings throughout the day. And if it does indicate any irregularities, the Apple Watch will notify the user to see a doctor.
The previous versions of the Apple Watch (Series 1, Series 2, and Series 3) will also be gaining irregular heart rhythm notifications. The Series 4 is also getting this feature, unsurprisingly.
That’s the big deal for watchOS 5.1.2. There are a few other feature tweaks, including Control Center option for the Walkie-Talkie feature, and more. The new software will also introduce the standard behind-the-scenes tweaks and improvements. Bug squashing will surely be part of the mix as well.
Here is Apple’s changelog for the new software:
- Allows you to take an electrocardiogram similar to a single-lead electrocardiogram
- Can indicate whether your heart rhythm shows signs of atrial fibrillation—a serious form of irregular heart rhythm—or sinus rhythm, which means your heart is beating in a normal pattern
- Saves ECG waveform, classification and any noted symptoms in a PDF on the Health app on iPhone to share with your doctor
- Adds the ability to receive an alert if an irregular heart rhythm that appears to be atrial fibrillation is detected (US and US territories only)
- Enables direct access to supported movie tickets, coupons, and rewards cards in Wallet when tapped to a contactless reader
- Receive notifications and animated celebrations when you achieve daily maximum points in a day during an Activity competition
- New Infograph complications for Mail, Maps, Messages, Find My Friends, Home, News, Phone, Remote
- Manage your availability for Walkie-Talkie from Control Center
This update includes new features, improvements and bug fixes:
New ECG app on Apple Watch Series 4 (US and US territories only)
The update is a free download.