New Wearable Platforms for Health and Fitness Applications


Designers can extract vital signs and raw data for their wearable designs with the MAX-HEALTH-BAND, as well as monitor clinical-grade electrocardiograph (ECG) and heart rate with the MAX-ECG-MONITOR from Maxim Integrated Products, Inc. The MAX-HEALTH-BAND evaluation and development platform, a wrist-worn heart-rate and activity monitor, features the MAX86140 optimized optical pulse-oximeter/heart-rate sensor, the MAX20303 wearable power-management solution, and Maxim’s motion-compensated algorithms. The MAX-ECG-MONITOR evaluation and development platform features the MAX30003 ultra-low-power, clinical-grade analog front end (AFE), which monitors ECG and heart-rate signals. It comes in two form factors—a wet electrode patch for clinical applications and a chest strap for fitness applications.

Many designers struggle to develop good optical heart-rate solutions for health and fitness wearables. This is primarily due to the complexity involved in designing good optical solutions and motion-compensated algorithms, which slows down the design process. Designers must also consider customer expectations such as comfort, longer battery life, and reliable accuracy. The MAX-HEALTH-BAND and MAX-ECG-MONITOR evaluation and development platforms solve these challenges.


Eliminating up to six months of design time which is typically required for building and prototyping, the MAX-HEALTH-BAND heart-rate and activity tracker demonstrates system-level performance at the IC level and can be used to evaluate AFEs and power-management ICs (PMICs). It includes motion-compensated algorithms to extract useful data for health and fitness applications based on photoplethysmography (PPG) signals. In addition, it streams algorithm output and raw data from the health sensors via Bluetooth onto a smartphone app for customer algorithm development. Algorithm output data provided includes heart rate, heart-rate variability (HRV), step count, and activity classification. For high accuracy, the heart-rate and activity monitor collects beat-to-beat physiological data about the heart. Compared to competitive solutions, the Maxim ICs within the MAX-HEALTH-BAND require less than half the power, allowing it to last for seven days on just a single charge. These ICs are also approximately one-third smaller to deliver a compact, comfortable form factor for consumers.


The MAX-ECG-MONITOR evaluation and development platform, featuring the MAX30003 clinical-grade AFE, analyzes data and accurately tracks ECG and heart rate to provide valuable insight to customers for clinical and fitness applications. It allows developers to run their own fitness or medical ECG-based applications and algorithms. Part of the  Movesense ecosystem for biometric and motion sensor solutions, the MAX-ECG-MONITOR runs an open application programming interface (API) for developing unique in-device apps for various ECG-based use cases showing heart-rate signals at rest or during high motion activity.