Published on June 16, 2015
QardioArm is basically a bluetooth blood pressure monitor – or sphygmomanometer if you’re feeling verbose – that works with either iPhone or Android devices to measure and track variations in PB. This might seem like just one more metric to track, but if you’re serious about your running and general health it can be a key indicator to follow.
Using QardioArm is utter simplicity and this itself is a huge benefit, encouraging regular use rather than becoming yet another overly-complicated gadget that gathers dust in the cupboard. The free app requires a quick account set-up and three bits of basic starting data: height, weight and date of birth. From there the app walks you through initial set up which pairs the unit with the phone and takes mere seconds. Hit the start button on the app and the QardioArm gently inflates and then deflates around the upper arm to give both heart rate and blood pressure readings. The new app is also available for use with Apple Watch, the purchase of which may well have sent your blood pressure rocketing – so it’s good to check…
Data is saved to both the app and to secure cloud making it available to share with friends (should you wish to get competitive) or with chosen medical professionals. There is also the ability to use current location when taking a reading for a fuller environmental picture of what may be causing fluctuations – hammock on a beach in Thailand could well mean a nice relaxed reading, but you may not need a sphygmomanometer to tell you that.
There are a number of other niceties about QardioArm including a ‘Visitor Mode’ so that a friend can grab a quick reading without overwriting your data, data that can integrate with other apps and products from Qardio, and an integrated cuff that serves as a pretty rugged protective cover. Aside from making the tracking of blood pressure incredibly simple QardioArm has also pulled off the neat trick of making a deeply functional bit of medical kit into something that resembles desirable tech – we never thoughts we’d wax lyrical about the aesthetics of a sphygmomanometer but it’s clean-line minimalism is kind of lovely.
On test the QardioArm proved itself to be both robust and reliable – we checked regular results against a GP’s in-surgery sphygmomanometer – and the app delivers the right level of depth balanced with simplicity of use.
It’s available in a range of seven colours (emphasising the aesthetic unique selling point) although anything other than the standard white will cost an additional £10 on the already quite high £99 RRP – gold will set you back an extra £20. Arguably on the steep side and a good deal more than the iHealth Wireless BP Wrist Monitor at £64.95. It’s hard to justify the price difference on looks alone – although the it would be more at home in the Apple Store than the rather utilitarian iHealth – but the QardioArm is also better specced and more intuitive in function.
Full details and online purchase for QardioArm at getqardio.com