Over the past few years, smartphones have become more than capable of taking some DSLR-like images to heart-rate sensing. Samsung wants to take this a step further, using the optical sensors in its Galaxy S9, for something other than great low-light shots.
For this, Samsung has partnered with the University of California (UCSF) to help monitor blood pressure and keep your stress levels in check. It has created an app called ‘The BP Lab’ and is inviting users to partake in a 3-week research study. It’s aimed at gathering real-time data, that too from Samsung users, to better understand how stress and blood pressure are interlinked.
This study will see users report their daily activities and behavior to the researchers over at UCSF, all while measuring their blood pressure using the Galaxy S9‘s improved new optical sensor (reading BP via light signals). You will just have to place your finger on the sensor and register your blood pressure multiple times during the day.
Stress has often been linked to temporary spikes in your blood pressure, causing your heart to beat faster even when it should be resting. People often resort to overeating or drinking too much alcohol to fix this. But that only makes the situation worse. Samsung and UCSF want to help users understand when their BP is at risky levels. Wendy Berry Mendes, professor of psychiatry at UCSF says,
Our partnership with Samsung could help people all over the world improve their health by managing stress. This study could provide the largest dataset yet on stress, daily emotional experiences, and blood pressure.
The ‘My BP Lab’ will be available to download on the Google Play Store on March 15 and it’s then enrolling test subjects for a trial study in the US which will become a part of its research. It’ll help you figure out the cause of your stress and the steps you can take to keep it in check.