Earlier this year, Google introduced Health Connect as a way for app developers to have early access to a platform that securely shares health and fitness data across Android devices, with user consent. The search giant collaborated with Samsung to build this platform which simplifies the connectivity between apps while providing centralized privacy controls for users
Now, Google is making the Health Connect (Beta) app available for download in Google Play to give users a central place to manage their privacy settings with granular controls to see which apps have access to data at any given time.
Already, more than health, fitness and wellness apps are rolling out integrations with the platform, including early adopters of Health Connect like MyFitnessPal, Oura and Peloton.
Why does it matter?
By enabling health and fitness apps to talk to each other, each app is able to provide a user with better, more holistic health insights.
In the past, developers had to establish multiple API connections to share data between different apps and each integration was costly to build and maintain. This limited developers’ data sharing capabilities and made it hard for users to unlock this data so that it could be utilized in different apps.
Now, with Health Connect, building integration with a new app is as simple as reading in new data from Health Connect, rather than building a whole new integration.
For example, Android users will now be able to sync and get credit for their Peloton workouts in apps like Oura, MyFitnessPal, WeightWatchers and Lifesum. Now, through a single integration with Health Connect, Peloton Members will have the option to share their workout stats across the ecosystem of apps they use to support their overall wellness.
Health Connect provides a standardized data schema that supports 40+ data types across 6 categories. The schema is intuitive to use and covers a wide range of use cases, from exercises to sleep tracking to vital signs. It only requires just a few lines of code to read and write any of these data types in Health Connect. Health Connect even supports complex aggregations so that you can completely customize your queries to your app’s use case.
It’s all about privacy
Previously, users had to navigate to multiple apps to manage data permissions. And, developers had to build out permissions management UIs themselves.
With Health Connect, users can easily manage permissions in a single place, with granular controls to see which apps are accessing data at any given time.
For developers, Health Connect provides the permissions management hub and granular permissions UIs out of the box, so you can set this up quickly.
On the record
“With Health Connect APIs, our engineers were able to easily adapt their existing architecture in order to read and write user health data such as nutrition, hydration, exercise, and steps,” said Jason Peterson, CTO of MyFitnessPal. “With this integration, we’re now able to consume data from any 3rd party application that also writes to Health Connect, expanding our users’ choices while allowing them more flexibility to grant granular permissions about which data they want to share.”