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Apple Heart Study app launches in the US in partnership with Stanford Medicine

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Apple Watch Series 3

Apple has launched Apple Heart Study, a research study app that uses Apple Watch’s heart rate sensor to collect data on irregular heart rhythm, in partnership with Stanford Medicine. The app also notifies users who may be experiencing atrial fibrillation (AFib), with additional monitoring. The Apple Heart Study was announced back in September and is now available to Apple Watch users in the US.

AFib, the leading cause of stroke, is responsible for approximately 130,000 deaths and 750,000 hospitalizations in the US every year. Many people don’t experience symptoms, so AFib often goes undiagnosed.

iPhone Watch Heart Study

Apple explains how the Apple Watch is used in the research study:

To calculate heart rate and rhythm, Apple Watch’s sensor uses green LED lights flashing hundreds of times per second and light-sensitive photodiodes to detect the amount of blood flowing through the wrist. The sensor’s unique optical design gathers signals from four distinct points on the wrist, and when combined with powerful software algorithms, Apple Watch isolates heart rhythms from other noise. The Apple Heart Study app uses this technology to identify an irregular heart rhythm.

If an irregular heart rhythm is identified, users will receive a notification, of course, on their Apple Watch and iPhone alongside consultation with a study doctor for free, and an electrocardiogram (ECG) patch for more in-depth monitoring. The research study program is open to Apple Watch users (Series 1 or later) who are 22 years or older. The Apple Heart Study app is available in the US App Store and is limited to US residents — for now.

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Twitter removes its official Mac app from the App Store

Twitter just killed off its official Mac app, ends support in a month.

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Twitter Social Media

Like the Twitter app on your macOS? Well, today’s news isn’t a good one for you, if your answer is yes. Twitter has pulled off the official Twitter for Mac app from the Mac App Store today.

In a tweet pushed from Twitter Support, the micro-blogging site announced that “starting today the Twitter for Mac app will no longer be available for download.” What appears to be the reason for the sudden demise of the Twitter for Mac app is the company’s efforts to provide a great Twitter experience that’s consistent across platforms. Simply put, use Twitter in your browser!

While this is for sure to make many Twitter users feel sad as the macOS client offered way better features over the browser version of Twitter, the move also means that we will be seeing improvements in the web version of the platform. Twitter for Mac will continue to have support for 30 more days, and after that, you won’t be able to use it at all.

“For the full Twitter experience on Mac, visit Twitter on web,” says Twitter.

Alternatives like Tweetbot and Tweeterific from third-party developers are a better option rather than using Twitter on the web. It comes at a cost though, unlike the official Twitter for Mac app.

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Google Maps for iOS adds one-tap access to commute information

The features arrived on Android last year.

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Google Maps for iOS update

Google has updated its Maps app for iOS. The latest release of Google Maps for iOS offers real-time commute information, with a three-sectioned bar at the bottom of the screen. Finding nearby restaurants and hotels, real-time traffic data, and transit information are now easier than ever.

Swipe up from the bottom of the screen, and you’ll see three different tabs aligned together: Explore, Driving, and Transit. The very first, as the name suggests, helps you find nearby places for restaurants and hotels, while the latter two provide you with real-time traffic details and transit information, respectively.

Whether we like it or not, sometimes life just flies by. And in the moment, every minute counts. Just one minute can be the difference between catching the last train or walking home in the rain. Or getting to that new restaurant in time to snag the last table.

The company brought the same set of features on Android last year. It’s good to see the handy one-tap feature making its way to millions of iOS users, a year later though. Google Maps is available on the App Store for free, grab the latest update now!

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Microsoft Cortana now available on iPad

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Microsoft Cortana iPad

Microsoft has released Cortana for iPad. Cortana makes its iPad debut eight months after the smart assistant was available on iPhone last year. The iPad counterpart features a brand-new design for the larger screen with a much faster experience.

The Cortana digital assistant from Microsoft isn’t quite like Alexa or the Google Assistant, much like Siri, but is a Microsoft alternative for Siri — with enough limitations, thanks iOS. You can’t configure to replace Siri with Cortana (or any other assistant) on your iOS device, however.

The human interface is same as the iPhone counterpart, but with an interface optimized for larger screens and looks perfect on the iPad Pro line-up. Furthermore, the app now launches 20 percent faster on iOS devices.

Cortana can help you schedule appointments, set reminders, answer questions, alongside third-party integration with services like Netflix and Spotify. Microsoft Cortana is available on the App Store for free.

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