Windsor

Ear-O-Smart earrings track heart rate, calories, activity

Ear-O-Smart connects to smartphones with Bluetooth wireless technology and allows the user to monitor a wide range of fitness data, such as heart rate, calories and activity level.

Most fitness monitors are limited to wrist based electronics

Ear-O-Smart technology depends on the contact with skin and blood flow. (Ear-O-Smart)

A University of Windsor engineering student is working on a fashionable way to track fitness activity.

He's developing a product that turns earrings into a heart monitor.

Ravinder Saini's desk in the engineering building doubles lab space. It's where he's been trying to perfect Ear-O-Smart, the world's first "smart earrings.

"The answer was straight in front of us, because physicians have been using earlobe for a long time," he said.

Saini wanted to create a fitness tracker that is disguised as every-day-wear.

"We came up with the idea of modular earrings, where you can have an ear smart fitness monitor and put in your own gem, your own stone and let your creativity define your personality," he said.

Ear-O-Smart connects to smartphones with Bluetooth wireless technology and allows the user to monitor a wide range of fitness data, such as heart rate, calories and activity level.

The technology depends on two things: the quality of contact the chip has with the skin, and the blood flow in the flesh.

Once on, the chip should be able to connect to any smartphone app that records your heart rate.

"People think that they only burn calories during their workout, but the truth is it's just even less than 10 per cent of the calories."

Saini hopes by tracking daily activities people will make healthier choices -- such as taking the stairs or walking.

He's still working out a few glitches, but has launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise $30,000.

Saini hopes it will help get his smart earrings into stores by next year and get people making healthy choices fashionably.

Saini said wearable market is expanding quickly, but the problem is options are very limited; most fitness monitors are limited to wrist based electronics.

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