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Xiaomi’s update on Mi Health app brings Heart Rate monitoring to all devices via phone’s camera

You can now measure your heart rate using a built-in camera on Xiaomi smartphones following a feature update on the Mi Health app. Previously, users had to pair a fitness tracker that would in turn enable all for the functionality on their devices. This development effectively doesn’t necessitate users to have a companion wearable for the utility and surprisingly doesn’t use a separate sensor like on Samsung devices to properly record your heart rate.

A brief history on Xiaomi’s quest to bring various health and fitness features to the masses; sometime during last year, the tech giant unveiled a number of features targeted at user’s health and fitness on the Mi Health app. The phone maker included step tracking, sleep tracking, BMI Measurement and women’s health capabilities on their devices. Heart rate monitoring will therefore enrich the app’s health-oriented features without necessarily having a companion wearable.

Although prices of fitness trackers have tremendously come down over the years, it’s still not within what you’d say an average Kenyan might see as value compared to other devices they might need. We recently highlighted the best value wearable’s you could easily buy in Kenya for less than Ksh. 6000, but for most Kenyan’s buying a smartphone for the amount will make more sense than something they really don’t need.

Starting from Mi Health version 2.7.4, Xiaomi unveiled the ability to record heart rate activities natively using your phone’s camera, rather than having to pair a companion accessory. Apparently, your phone’s camera sensor is well equipped to effectively monitor the activities and it all needed a feature addition inside the app.

How to measure your heart rate on a Xiaomi smartphone using camera

For those who are already using MIUI, with the latest update, you should see a new section with “Heart Rate” inside the Mi Health app.

  • You’ll notice a red color ‘heartbeat’ icon at the bottom right,
  • Proceed to tap on it to access the ‘heart rate detection’ feature.
  • you’ll then be required to cover the flash and camera with a finger to begin the heart rate detection process.
  • A progress bar will shortly appear at the bottom of the screen which will let you know when the heart rate detection process has complete.

Mi Health app will then compile recorded information and tell you whether your heart rate is optimal, slow, or fast.

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