Apple on Tuesday announced its new Apple Watch Series 6, which includes new blood oxygen monitoring capabilities. During Tuesday’s media event, the company did not specify which countries the feature would be available in at launch.
While many Apple Watch health functions – such as ECG and irregular heart rate notifications – have required country-by-country approval, it appears that blood oxygen monitoring doesn’t require such approvals.
The Apple Watch Feature Availability page lists more than 100 countries where Apple Watch Series 6 users will have access to the new feature. This suggests that the usual health regulatory approvals aren’t required for the feature. However, a support document on using blood oxygen monitoring does mention that it’s only available in “certain countries and regions,” however, so there may be some countries where it isn’t available.
Blood oxygen measurement is performed on the Series 6 via the new Blood Oxygen app, which uses a series of red and green LEDs and infrared light to measure the amount of light reflected by the skin. Advanced algorithms then use the collected data to calculate the color of the blood to determine the blood oxygen level.