Windows Phone App Review: easyHeartRate
We all know that our Windows Phones have tremendous capabilities but did you know that there's an app out there that turns your Windows Phone into a heart rate monitor? easyHeartRate is a Windows Phone app that uses your camera to measure your heart rate. easyHeartRate not only gives you a decent heart rate reading but you also have the ability to record and monitor your heart rate history, and calculate the various heart rate zones.
The app is laid out in a simple and straightforward manner. From the Heart Rate Meter page of easyHeartRate, you press the play symbol, cover your camera lens with your finger and let the app do its thing. After about ten to twenty seconds your average heart rate will be displayed.
So here is how it works. According to the developer, the app measures the change in the color of your fingertip. Each time the heart beats, it will push the blood to the fingertip making the color change. The app takes that data and converts it to a heart rate reading.
At the bottom of the Heart Rate Meter page you have button controls to save the reading to your History Page, jump to your History Page, share your reading on Facebook and access the app's settings.
Settings cover the three modes in which your heart rate is calculated and include speedy, balanced and accurate. The best I can tell is that the more accurate the mode the longer it takes to get a reading. You also have a promotional code entry field (no clue) and a link to rate the app in the Marketplace.
Swiping to the right from the Heart Rate Meter page you'll find the Heart Rate Zone page where you enter your age, gender, and resting heart rate. Once you do this, a heart rate zone guide will be generated to show you what the various heart rate levels reflect.
In tinkering with easyHeartRate I found it to be fairly accurate. By no means does the app turn your Windows Phone into a medical instrument but it gets you in the ball park. My heart rate at a rest is in the neighborhood of 65-70. easyHeartRate read it in the nieghborhood of 70-75.
Oh...one word of caution is that when you place your finger on the camera lens, lay it gently on the lens. I found if you press on the lens, the reading is somewhat elevated. My first try with easyHeartRate indicated my heart rate was 237.
For the most part, easyHeartRate ran smoothly. There were a few instances where a lag was experienced between tapping a button and seeing the results. For example, I would tap the Settings button and about two seconds later, the settings page would appear. This lag time didn't occur with regularity but enough to be noticed.
There is a free trial version available for easyHeartRate to let you try things out. The full version will run you $.99 and you can grab it here at the Windows Phone Marketplace. It is a mango app so you'll need to update your phone to Windows Phone 7.5.
One more footnote...according to the Marketplace description easyHeartRate is not compatible with the HTC Mozart.