In this brief guide, we will discuss “Phones with SpO2 sensors” and some basic features of the smartphones available that come with a SpO2 sensor. This article will be helpful to you if you are planning on buying a new phone equipped with the feature to measure your blood oxygen levels as well.
What is SpO2?
In medical terms, SpO2 is taken as a vital sign reading. SpO2 is the term used to define oxygen saturation in the body.
The body requires a certain oxygen level to function efficiently. Blood carries oxygen to the body. Haemoglobin (a protein present in the blood) plays an important role in transporting oxygen in the body as it is exclusively responsible to bind to oxygen molecules.
The haemoglobin protein structure exists in 2 states: oxygenated haemoglobin and deoxygenated haemoglobin. The ratio of the oxygen-carrying haemoglobin to the non-oxygen-carrying haemoglobin is what makes up the oxygen saturation.
Phones with SpO2 sensor
The following are some phones that Samsung launched with a built-in heart rate and SpO2 sensor
· 2014: Samsung Galaxy Note 4
· 2015: Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, S6 Edge+ and Galaxy Note 5
· 2016: Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy Note 7
· 2017: Samsung Galaxy S8, S8+ and Galaxy Note 8
· 2018: Samsung Galaxy S9, S9+ and Galaxy Note 9
· 2019: Samsung Galaxy S10 and S10+
Samsung Galaxy Note 4
Galaxy Note4 was released a little while before the S6 in 2014 and it featured a slightly larger display, bigger battery, and a stylus pen. The stylus pen accessory made it much attractive in the Samsung Market. It was the first smartphone to come with an embedded SpO2 sensor.
Galaxy S6, S6 Edge and S6 Edge+
The very popular Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 Edge and S6 Edge+ were released in 2015 and came with a variety of RAM and memory features. It featured three different Memory capacities of 32GB, 64GB and 128GB, all with 3GB of inbuilt RAM.
The S6 series featured a newer display using super AMOLED with a 5.1-inch screen size for the S6 and S6 Edge. The Edge was a new element that came with this series that formed the smartphone’s curved screen edges.
The S6 Edge+ had a larger display of 5.7 inches and a larger battery. The S6 Edge+ had Li-Ion 3000 mAh battery as compared to the Li-Ion 2600 mAh present in S6 and S6 Edge hence, giving it the plus+ name.
Galaxy S7, S8 and S8+
The subsequent Galaxy S series phones were small updates to the S6, with Galaxy S7 released in 2016 including a 3000mAh battery for the 5.1-inch display.
The Galaxy S8 was released in 2017 with an enhanced screen size to a 5.8-inch display and a screen-built pressure sensor in replacement of the home button. The Galaxy S8 also had a major jump in the CPU from its predecessor with a Qualcomm MSM8998 Snapdragon 835 (10 nm) chipset introduced.
The S8+ again came with a larger screen of 6.2 inches and a 3500mAh battery. All S7, S8 and S8+ phones came fitted with a SpO2 and a heart rate sensor.
Galaxy S9 and S9+
The Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ became very popular hits in the market in 2018. It offered top-of-the-class features. It came with three different memory sizes of 64 GB, 128 GB and 264 GB.
The S9 offered 4GB RAM and the S9+ offered 6 GB RAM, a comparatively larger display and greater battery power. All phones came equipped with a SpO2 and a heart rate sensor.
Galaxy S10 and S10+
The Samsung Galaxy S10 and S10+ were launched in 2019. It offered much larger memory specifications and bigger built-in RAM. The S10 came with 8GB RAM and was available in 128GB and 512GB internal memory.
The S10+ came with an enhanced screen size, a bigger battery and 128GB and 512GB memory with 8GB RAM and another model with a whopping memory of 1TB and 12GB RAM.
Galaxy Note 5, 7, 8 and 9
The Samsung note series also became a strong flagship point for Samsung much like the Galaxy S series. The Note series also progressed similarly in terms of memory, RAM, display size and battery size. All Note series phones from Note 4 to Note 9 came equipped with a heart rate sensor and SpO2 sensor.
How to measure your SpO2 levels?
Step 1: Tap on Samsung Health on your Galaxy device
Step 2: Scroll all the way down to Stress and tap Measure
Step 3: Place your fingertip on the SpO2 sensor and make sure to stay still while taking the measurement
Step 4: Once done, lift your fingertip from the sensor and you can review your data in the resulting My Stress screen
If you cannot follow the steps above, you can try the older method of reading your SpO2 levels with Samsung Health. Follow these steps:
Step 1: Launch Samsung Health on your Galaxy device
Step 2: Scroll down, tap on Manage items and enable Oxygen saturation if necessary
Step 3: Tap Measure next to Oxygen saturation from the app’s main screen
Step 4: Place your fingertip on the SpO2 sensor and be sure to stay still throughout the measurement process
Should I use my phone to check my blood oxygen levels?
Pulse oximeters are designated devices for clinically measuring blood oxygen levels. Today, however, smartphones such as the Samsung Galaxy Smartphones come with an inbuilt oxygen sensor. This makes it easier to measure blood oxygen levels at home.
In a pandemic-stricken world where COVID-19 has been known to create a low level of oxygen in patients, it would be helpful to know SpO2 concentrations to diagnose any serious health condition. The Samsung Health app has definitely been useful in such scenarios.
The question however remains on how accurate the smartphone sensor would be as compared to the clinically used device. It begs to ask if it can be used as a replacement or not?
How accurate is Samsung Health SpO2 measurement?
The Samsung Galaxy SpO2 sensors measure with an accuracy of 90-100%. However, they cannot be replacements to the clinically used device, as the mechanism by which the smartphone measures saturation is slightly different compared to the medically used device.
In this guide, we discussed “Phones with SpO2 sensors” and some basic features of smartphones that come equipped with a SpO2 sensor. This article would have been helpful to you if you were planning on buying a new phone equipped with the feature to measure your blood oxygen saturation levels.