Samsung’s S Health App is undergoing a few changes. The update, S Health v5.0, involves more options for people to interact and share information as well as a feature that puts them in contact with experts near them to talk about their health problems or just general queries on health. The feature is currently only available in South Korea, Samsung’s home country, but will be rolling out to other nations soon. The S Health App has helped 180 million global users worldwide keep track of their health.
The most noticeable change is the dashboard being split in to three tabs. The first tab, ‘Me’ just has your personal health information like how many steps you’ve taken, timing your daily jogs or runs, your weight, your water intake and blood glucose level etc.
The second tab, ‘Together’ is to interact with your friends. You can share information about yourself on social media websites like Facebook or challenge your friends to one on one competitions. There are 44 activities to choose form including exercise bike, lunges, crunches, pilates, squats and step machine sessions You can also keep track of private leaderboards.
The third tab, Discover, is about content. It shows you news, guides and articles on “healthy living and workout tips.” This includes topics like weight loss, sleep cycles, nutrition, fitness, recipes, cardio and others.
The Ask Experts feature which I mentioned before is the biggest addition. It puts users in touch with local professional health consultants through phone calls, text messages or a simple search. Now Samsung isn’t clear on how they would vet people for this feature or whether it will be free. There are a whole lot of quacks out there that push for “alternative medicine” and “herbal treatment”. The recent cupping fiasco at the Olympics is one such example. These health apps need to educate people towards tested and clinically proven treatments more than anything else. Half the job will be done right there, when the patient knows who to approach and who to trust.
Added Layers Of Security
The S Health App has been audited by a third party firm for meeting the requirements of the HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act). The Act is a US Federal regulation that requires strict security measures for Protected Health Information. Samsung Knox also adds a layer of security and encryption via hardware backed credential storage. The Knox security layer is only enabled on the Note 7 right now. The S7 and S7 Edge don’t have this luxury.
iOS Health App V S Health App
Apple has kept health at the forefront of their promotions for the Apple Watch and even going back to the launch of the iPad 2. They’ve made it a point to focus on those with disabilities like severed limbs and blindness and autism and how their lives have improved using iOS devices. This year they announced adding an organ donation option to their Health App. It comes out with the release of iOS 10 this September. Samsung’s new move may be a counter but it’s just not in the same league as an option for organ donation.