Cool gimmicks: Galaxy S5 heart rate sensor vs a pulse measuring app
Samsung went bonkers on biometrics with the Galaxy S5, equipping it not only with a Finger Scanner that lets you unlock the phone, or authorize secure payments, but also with a heart rate sensor. The optical pulse meter is situated next to the LED flash on the back, and is very ergonomic to use, as it requires a simple stretch of your index finger. The heart rate sensor is folded into Samsung's S Health app, which offers things like a step counter, via the built-in pedometer, as well as calorie counters, fitness tips, and a general worry about your wellbeing.
The S Health app widget on the home screen of the S5 has a dedicated circular launch key for the heart rate sensor now, and taking your pulse usually requires less than 10 seconds after you've placed your finger over the sensor. We decided to pit the contraption against those random heart rate sensing apps in the Play Store, which use your camera to optically read your pulse. Long story short, as you can see in the video below, the margin of error between the two methods is rather insignificant to warrant the inclusion of a dedicated heart rate sensor on the phone. Granted, it looks and sounds cool, and has that "wow" factor for bragging in front of friends or relatives, but in reality you can do a similar job with a free app on any Android device.