Fall detection is an important feature to consider when shopping for wearable tech. These are the smartwatches and fitness trackers that can do it.
Smartwatches and fitness trackers are incredibly popular due to their enhanced health monitoring capabilities. Among these features, fall detection is highly useful, as it can notify emergency contacts or call for assistance if the device registers that the wearer has taken a fall or experienced some kind of impact.
This feature is particularly significant for older adults, individuals with limited mobility, and those participating in high-risk workouts and physical activities. Here, we'll list out some of the popular smartwatches and fitness trackers that have fall-detection abilities and expound on their functionalities.
Apple has a range of smartwatches that come with fall detection features. These watches have audible and tactile alarms and display an alert to check if the wearer is okay.
That said, you'll need to ensure that the fall-detection functionality is enabled for your Apple watch to automatically call emergency contacts. Navigate to the Settings menu to enable Wrist Detection on your device. Here is a list of Apple watches that have the fall-detection feature:
If the wearer is not severely injured, they can tap the screen to indicate they are okay or slide it across to contact emergency services. In case you don't take action, a timer will run for 30 seconds, and an alert will be activated. The device will then automatically call emergency contacts stored in your Medical ID and send your updated location as well.
If you have multiple emergency contacts, the watch will automatically choose a single emergency number. These emergency features make an Apple Watch a reliable and efficient device, especially for seniors or people with mobility issues.
Samsung has been a leader in the smartwatch industry for several years, and its products offer a range of features for fitness enthusiasts and casual users alike. The emergency features on Samsung's smartwatches work with the Galaxy Wearable app, and use a combination of sensors, including an accelerometer and gyroscope, to detect sudden movements or impact.
When a fall is detected, the smartwatch will vibrate and display a notification on the screen. If the wearer doesn't respond within 60 seconds, the smartwatch will automatically send an alert to emergency contacts with the wearer's location information. The following Samsung devices come with a built-in fall detection functionality:
Samsung's smartwatches also have other safety features, such as a heart rate monitor that can alert you about high and low heart rates. These watches work with the Samsung Health app, which allows users to track their workouts, monitor their sleep, and more.
Garmin is a popular choice for smartwatches and fitness trackers. The list of Garmin devices with fall or incident-detection capabilities includes several different models and generations. Here are some of the Garmin wearables that offer this feature:
As with other smartwatches on this list, these models can detect sudden changes in motion or impact and will automatically send alerts to your emergency contact. This video explains how some of the emergency features on Garmin work.
You might not need an active Internet connection for the feature to work. However, you'll need to have Garmin Connect activated when you're working out or doing some physical activity.
Some Huawei devices also feature fall detection and emergency SOS functionality. To activate the automatic emergency SOS feature, navigate to the Security settings on your device and enable Emergency SOS.
Once enabled, your device will automatically trigger the feature when it detects that you have experienced a fall and are unable to seek assistance. The Huawei devices that have the fall detection functionality are:
This video demonstrates how the fall detection feature works on Huawei devices.
You can configure emergency contacts on your device. In the event of a fall, your smartwatch will send calls to your designated contacts, along with your updated location. However, if you haven't added any, you'll have the options to choose from public assistance numbers available in your location.
Google Pixel Watch was one of the latest smartwatches to be equipped with a fall detection feature. In case of a fall, the watch notifies you and allows you to contact emergency numbers. If you don't respond within a timeframe, the watch will make a call automatically. However, you can personalize an emergency contact to be reached instead of emergency services.
For Google Pixel Watches that come with LTE service, Emergency SOS and Fall Detection can make an assisted emergency call from the watch itself. If you have a Wi-Fi-only Pixel Watch, ensure it is connected to your paired phone via Bluetooth for the emergency call to go through.
Incident detection features can automatically alert users, prompt emergency services, and even notify designated emergency contacts or public emergency services. Whether you are an active individual who is concerned about personal safety or a senior citizen, these smartwatches and fitness trackers with fall detection are valuable companions that prioritize your well-being.
We recommend looking up specific features of each device to determine the one that best suits your needs and lifestyle.
Cheryl is a Senior Writer at MakeUseOf. She has penned over a hundred articles on MUO covering a wide range of topics.
With a passion for gadgets and technology that dates back to 2001, she has constantly explored the latest in tech trends – and is committed to providing readers with in-depth and unbiased coverage of the industry.
In addition to her extensive writing experience, Cheryl holds online certifications in Content Strategy from UC Davis.
With a strong background in investment, content strategy, and social media, and more, she’s explored diverse genres—from digital media to fitness to personal finance, and more.
Cheryl loves listening to music while going on walks or exploring new places.