According to a new patent application filed by Apple, the company has been working on a wearable electrocardiographic (ECG) device that could be made into a watch or ring, or indeed other kinds of small, delicate jewelry.

Part of the application makes specific mention of the fact that the device would be wearable on either the left or right-hand side of the body, be that a wrist or even ankle, which is important as ECG monitors can often offer different results depending on their location.

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Apple’s patent walks people through the use and calibration of the device which would apparently involve users taking readings from a variety of places on the body to enable Apple’s software to correctly configure the ECG hardware in order to avoid false readings.

As is always the case with these things, and we will continue to remind everyone, patent applications are filed every day, and while those files by Apple will always get attention, that doesn’t mean that those filings will eventually turn into real, shipping products. Sometimes they do, of course, but whether this ECG monitor is one of those or something that will end up consigned to the history of Apple R&D remains to be seen.

Since electrocardiographic measurements can depend on the electrode’s relative position to the heart being measured, and since the electrodes can be affixed to the wearable device, changing the device’s location from right to left, or wrist to ankle, can have an impact on the acquired electrocardiographic measurements. As an example, wearing the device on the left wrist vs. wearing the device on the right wrist can produce electrocardiographic measurements that are inverted relative to one another.

Apple ecg-wearable

(via: Patently Apple)

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