SMART BLOOD PRESSURE MONITOR
Withings, $179 householdtechnology.com.au ★★★★
THERE are many reasons to capture and record your blood pressure in the home. Perhaps doctors make you nervous. Perhaps you’re hypertensive. Perhaps your insurance company is exceedingly suspicious.
When shopping for medical equipment, however, you might want to stop by the iPhone accessories department. Withings, the company behind the wi-fi Body Scale, has created a blood pressure monitor that helpfully plugs into your Apple iPhone, iPod or iPad and measures your vital statistics. It might sound odd— it certainly looks odd— but there is a good reason behind this apparent absurdity.
Not only is this blood pressure monitor easy to use, but it also records your details in an app you can take with you to the doctor.
This app will even plot your blood pressure and heart rate readings on a graph, so you can track your stress or good health. The Withings Smart Blood Pressure monitor consists of a sturdy cylindrical strap that wraps around the top of your arm, 2cm above your inner elbow.
A large metal pipe containing its mechanics and four AAA batteries sit outside the arm band. Plug this gadget into the bottom of an Apple iOS device and a prompt appears asking you to download a free Withings app. Once installed, onscreen menus let you know how best to position the monitor and, once in place, taking a reading is as easy as tapping the Start icon.
Set the Withings gadget to ‘‘ automatic’’ and it will take three readings consecutively and deliver the average result.
Following the reading, the Withings app shows all three measurements on its screen with a self-explanatory green, orange or red light beside the blood pressure readings.
The good, mild and not-so-good ratings are based on World Health Organisation classifications.