One of the novelties presented at WWDC was watchOS 7, the new operating system for Apple Watch. One of the features it includes is the automatic detection of hand washing. Many thought that this function came up with COVID-19. However, internal Apple voices assure that it is a function that has been brewing for years and Publishing has been achieved after trial and error. Automatic detection makes use of three important aspects: the accelerometer, sensors and artificial intelligence. Thanks to this, the Apple Watch tells us when to stop washing our hands or if we have not yet complied with the recommended 20 seconds.
Accelerometer, sensors and AI: handwash detection in watchOS 7
Washing your hands well for at least 20 seconds can prevent the spread of disease. Apple Watch uses motion sensors, a microphone, and machine learning to detect movements and sounds related to handwashing, which is an extraordinary advance in the field of wearable devices. As soon as it perceives that the user is washing their hands, it activates a 20-second timer and alerts you if it ends prematurely. The Apple Watch can also remind the user to wash their hands when they get home.
The development of the function to detect handwashing has been long. It is not a matter of a few months as many users thought. This has been announced by Kevin Lynch, Apple’s vice president of technology, who assured TechCrunch that the feature has been the result of years of work after trial and error results.
The Apple Watch is responsible for listening to the environment trying to detect the soap or tap sound. However, the diversity of soaps and sinks makes detection much more complicated. That is why the accelerometer It also detects the movements of the hands, which are known to everyone from a very young age. Finally, artificial intelligence and maching learning are learning the moment, the frequency, the sound of the soap and the sinks that we frequent the most to improve this function that allows us to keep our hands clean.