Omron’s FDA-cleared blood-pressure watch now available …

Omron's FDA-cleared blood-pressure watch now available ...

The Omron HeartGuide on our wrist back in January this year.

Josh Miller/CNET

Smartwatches check heart rate, but they don’t do blood-pressure readings. This is why Omron’s blood pressure-taking watch HeartGuide got our attention at CES nearly a year ago. The HeartGuide uses an actual inflating wrist-cuff to take readings via oscillometry, the same way standard blood-pressure cuffs work, and can take period measurements throughout the day and night.

The watch finally received FDA clearance and is available for preorder now, shipping on Jan. 8. The watch costs $499, which is expensive compared to other over-the-counter blood pressure monitors. The HeartGuide, however, has full fitness-watch features including step-counting, sleep and activity tracking, along with getting phone notifications. 

Battery life is expected to be about 48 hours, according to Omron’s website, which is less than what was promised a year ago, but stay tuned for performance observations when we receive one to review.

Along with Apple’s FDA-cleared EKG monitor on the Apple Watch Series 4, 2019 is starting to look like a big year for medically cleared health tech in wearables.

Watch our original video on the HeartGuide from last CES below.

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