We have all been living through a life-altering pandemic. As a result, words such as “oxygenation” and “pulse oximetry” have become mainstream and the general public has increased the use of pulse oximeters. This should come as no surprise since hypoxia (i.e., low blood oxygen level) is one of the hallmarks of COVID-19 pneumonia. Today, there are many affordable personal pulse oximeters on the market. Traditional clip-on designs have several limitations. For example, they do not allow continuous monitoring, which may be indicated for some individuals. Thus, Wellue, a Chinese-based medical devices company, has introduced O2Ring.
O2Ring is a finger ring-shaped pulse oximeter that will continuously monitor the user’s peripheral oxygen saturation (SpO2) on the thumb. At Medgadget we were given the chance to try O2Ring for the past few weeks. Below is our review of the product.
Design and Fit
Wellue’s O2Ring is made of flexible medical silicone and weighs only fifteen grams. It has a sleek, low-profile design. However, since its face incorporates a small LED screen, it is slightly bulkier than comparable devices on the market, such as the Oura Ring or SLEEPON’s Go2Sleep ring.
O2Ring comes only in one size. The manufacturer recommends wearing it on the thumb or index finger. It is very comfortable to wear and stays securely in place throughout the day and while sleeping. One of the advantages of having a ring as opposed to a clip-on, at least for some people, is that the device can be used without the need to remove fingernail polish.
O2Ring is simple to use. It automatically switches on when you slip it on your finger and powers off a few seconds after taking it off. By tapping on it, the LED screen will illuminate and show your SpO2 and heart rate in real time. You can also view these readings via the smartphone app.
O2Ring uses vibrotactile feedback to alert the user if the SpO2 level drops below a preset level or the heart rate is out of a certain range. The intensity of the vibration can be adjusted.
The device is charged via a micro-USB cable. This is a drawback to the more convenient charging dock that its competitor, the Go2Sleep ring, offers. O2Ring has a battery life of twelve to sixteen hours and takes two to three hours to fully charge.
Wellue offers a free app for iOS and Android smartphones. The O2Ring itself has a built-in memory that can store up to 4 sessions or 40 hours of data. Each session ends when the ring is taken off. When the app is launched, the data is transmitted to your smartphone, as long as the ring is within Bluetooth range.
Overall, the app is easy to use. Each session is reported separately with a simple overview of the data. It highlights the average SpO2 and heart rate, lowest SpO2 reading, the number of drops in oxygen level, as well as the time spent below a certain level. The report can be shared with loved ones or healthcare providers via email or text message. According to Wellue, the device has been validated for accuracy through multiple clinical studies.
We found O2Ring to be a convenient, easy-to-use pulse oximeter. It is a particularly appealing option for medical conditions that require prolonged monitoring of blood oxygen levels, such as sleep apnea, chronic lung disease, and more recently, COVID-19 pneumonia.
O2Ring can be purchased from Wellue’s official website and Amazon. It retails for $165, which is slightly above the price point of other comparable products. Nevertheless, the device may offer peace of mind to both users and their loved ones.
Product page: O2Ring Oximeter Continuous Ring Oxygen Monitor