The next generation of Samsung Galaxy Buds could come with biometric sensors that will help you to track your workouts, according to a patent filed by the South Korean company.
The patent describes true wireless earbuds that are capable of measuring health data, thanks to built-in sensors. These sensors include a heart rate monitor, oxygen saturation monitor, a sensor to measure blood pressure and blood sugar levels, and sensors to monitor "the status of your blood vessels," and even your stress levels.
While some running headphones are already capable of measuring your heart rate as you exercise, there aren't any earbuds on the market that can monitor your blood sugar levels or tell you if you're stressed.
Including wide-ranging fitness trackers in its next wireless earbuds would go a long way in setting Samsung apart from the competition - and especially from its main rival, Apple.
Apple's AirPods 2, AirPods 3, and AirPods Pro can be used during workouts thanks to an IPX4 water resistance rating that protects them from sweat - but their design means they aren't the best fitness earbuds you can buy today.
Even so, Samsung's range of Galaxy Buds has failed to match the popularity of the AirPods. In fact, the Galaxy Buds Plus and Galaxy Buds 2 only come with an IPX2 rating, making them totally unsuitable for sports - but a new pair of fitness-focused earbuds could level the playing field (though it'll take a lot to unseat Apple from the true wireless throne).
That's if the AirPods Pro 2 don't come with all the fitness features we've heard rumors about.
The battle of the biometric earbuds
It's been suggested that the second-gen noise-cancelling earbuds will be able to measure your blood pressure. As posited by MacRumors, this could work in a similar way to the ear-based clip on pulse oximeters used in hospitals, which shine light through the earlobe to detect the amount of oxygen in a patient's bloodstream.
We know that Apple is familiar with this technology - the Apple Watch 6 comes with a pulse oximeter - so it's certainly not outside the realm of possibility.
It's not clear whether the design of the AirPods Pro would have to change materially to allow this to happen, but rumors that the AirPods Pro 2 will ditch their predecessors' iconic protruding earstems are hotting up.
As with any patent, we're not assuming that any future Galaxy Buds will definitely come with biometric sensors - but it's clear that the company is looking for ways to set its earphones apart from the competition.
We're not sure that will be enough to end Apple's domination of the true wireless earbuds market, but it could help Samsung to make an impact in a way it hasn't before - previous Galaxy Buds models have improved with every generation, but they still aren't the best true wireless earbuds you can buy.
In any case, we hopefully won't have too long to find out. Samsung is prolific when it comes to releasing new true wireless earbuds models, and the Apple AirPods Pro 2 are slated for a release date late next year.
Could 2022 see in the battle of the biometric earbuds? It's certainly starting to look that way.
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Via Let's Go Digital