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Free Heart Rate Monitor 

The Galaxy S5 was announced and one of the interesting new features was a heart-rate monitor.  But here's the thing, people have measuring their heart-rate for at least the last 3 years on most Android devices.  And you don't really need any special sensor to do it.  You do it through the camera sensor and the flash unit.  And it works remarkably well.  And the great thing is, it's free, and you can do it now.

App: Instant Heart Rate Monitor

If you read the comments for this app, there is some skepticism.  In order to put to rest any doubt, we've gone through great lengths to prove in the video above that Instant Heart Rate Monitor works, and works accurately.

Tips

When you press your finger against the camera, you don't want to restrict blood passing through your finger.  And after your eyes adjust, you should be able to see your finger pulsating provided that you have some descent circulation.  If you flip the phone over while it's detecting your heartrate, you should also see that your screen is a bright red orange, and the color should be pulsating.  So that's all that this app is doing.  It's just measuring the changes in color, graphing it for you, and counting the time between the peaks.  If you do have a weak pulse however, you can try a few things to raise your bloodpressure.

Is important to cover the entire camera sensor and not move your finger because it's just measuring the brightness of the image.  As for people saying how it gives you a reading when you just place it on the table.  And it's true that it does this, but only because camera sensors pick up noise along with light information, and it's just amplifying the tiniest amount of changes it sees and showing that to you on a graph.  You will see, it looks nothing like a pulse.  It's just static.

It is important that you measure your resting heart rate by measuring your heart rate first thing in the morning.  Coffee, stress, and level of physical activity will definitely impact the numbers.

Conclusion

It turns out you don't need a special sensor or the Samsung Galaxy S5 to measure your heart rate.  You can do it virtually on any Android and it works really well.  And the best thing is, it's free.  If you want to keep track of your results, there is a pro version available for purchase for $2.

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