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Fitbit could track real-time ‘arousal events’ but it’s not what you think



Get your minds out of the gutter! Just because Fitbit has patented real-time ‘arousal event’ notifications, it doesn’t mean your wrist will be buzzing every time you’re feeling saucy.

No, the patent granted to the Google-owned wearable giant last month (but filed last summer) speaks of real-time stress notifications, with devices like the Fitbit Charge 5 and Fitbit Sense potentially offering wearers advice on how to cope.

The ‘Detection and Response to Arousal Activations’ patent, spied by Wareable, would use sensors already contained within some Fitbit products, to keep tabs on potential stressors.

Those EDA (electrodermal activity) and ECG (electrocardiogram) sensors would continuously monitor the “sympathetic nervous system response of the user, which may be responsive to an arousal event or an activation.”

From there, Fitbit would be able to provide wearers with feedback on how to combat the stress event. If could be a brief breathing exercise, or period of meditation for example. Over time, the feature could learn more about what is helping users overcome stressors and make recommendations.

“Detection of events that increase the EDA response may provide information to the user regarding arousal events and provide recommendations to the user to address the arousal events to decrease their response,” the patent explains.

The idea appears to be a good one and well within the realms of possibility for Fitbit, considering the sensors in question are already contained with a few of the company’s smartwatches and fitness trackers.

The EDA sensor, for example, measures electrical charges called electrodermal activity on your skin. Currently, Fitbit Charge 5 and the Fitbit Sense smartwatch are used to measure stress levels, but the feature can be manually activated with a quick scan or shown as an overall daily Stress Management Score.


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