Kardia: Hi all I've seen on a few posts... - AF Association

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gingerfurball profile image

Hi all I've seen on a few posts people talking about a kardia, had a quick look on Google n I'm thinking of getting one because my cardiologist has asked me to go to hospital or ring an ambulance every time I go into AF but sometimes it doesn't last long enough for me to do either and I'm also worried about calling an ambulance n then it stopping before it gets to me lol, is it worth buying one and where did people get there's from, thanks x

52 Replies

Hello GB :-) I have just purchased a Kardia from their website here...


They seem to be the same price everywhere in the UK . Make sure you check the compatibility list for a smart phone or ipad to run the app. I purchased an ipad at the same time.

Thankyou for your reply, will check it's compatible with my phone, are they good for reading your pulse when in AF

Hi GB :-) in or out of AF the pulse is recorded.

I did a couple of test runs , I haven't had P-AF since the Kardia arrived and the pulse rate is recorded.

I think the Kardia is acting as a talisman and keeping P-AF at bay :-)

That's like me when I went to the Drs for an ECG and when I saw the cardiologist n had an ECG my heart rate was fine lol, I'd b happy if I didn't have another episode lol x

Clyde12 profile image
Clyde12 in reply to doodle68

Hi there...I’m thinking of getting one of these but want to know if it’s easy to use and link up to an iPad. At 69 technology and me don’t mix too quickly! Thank you.

doodle68 profile image
doodle68 in reply to Clyde12

Hi Clyde :-) I have just bought an Ipad and had to learn to use it before buying the Kardia. The Kardia app is installed with one click of a mouse and using the Kardia is easy too have you watched the video on it works?


I also read all the FAQs on the website


Clyde12 profile image
Clyde12 in reply to doodle68

Thanks doodle....I’m so glad I’ve found this site. Everyone is so helpful. We’ve just been visiting some friends...the female was going on and on about nothing in particular......I began to feel anxiety building up.....then felt my heart beating irregularly again. We left their house and everything calmed down! Maybe it was a coincidence....going to look at how the Kardia works. Thanks again.

Janith profile image
Janith in reply to Clyde12

Be careful ... l have a friend who calls me and doesn’t stop talking ... about herself ... her ailments, etc. she goes on and on ... l tell her, l must go now ... she won’t stop talking ... when l am finally able to stop her, l feel ill ... not afib per se, but slightly off. I won’t answer the phone if l see she is calling. Who needs it? So stay away from your friends.

Kardia is a useful tool to have if you have paroxysmal AF, provided you don't get obsessed with using it!! As doodle says, make sure it's compatible with your phone and yes, it does tell you that you "may possibly" be experiencing AF. It's also useful for keeping copies of readings to show your Doctor and you can also email readings which can be very useful.

Sounds like just what I need thankyou for your reply x

hock217 profile image
hock217 in reply to FlapJack

I was told these will not pick up SVT looping around a node going nowhere. Told only the cardiac monitor leads pick it up. Also, don't know it's occurring unless lasts long enough to feel faint. I would love to find something.

Make sure your phone is on the list of Kardi approved phones, there list is on the Kardia website. Not all smartphones are on their list.

As Flapjack says, don’t get obsessed with it. I use mine occasionally. I had hoped to use mine to correlate the sensations I feel ( e.g. palpitations) with what my ECG showed at the time. In my case, my ECG shows an almost permanent state of bigeminy and the Kardia categorises my traces as “possible atrial fibrillation “.

I managed to save a few pounds by buying from PMS Instruments. I suspect that the iOS and Android apps are slightly different as there no option to save the record anywhere with an iPhone (assuming that you don’t intend paying monthly foe Alivecor’s premium service), although you can email a pdf record to wherever you like and save from there.

Buffafly profile image
Buffafly in reply to IanMK

I showed what I thought was bigeminy to my cardiologist and he muttered something about 'possibly slow AF'.

IanMK profile image
IanMK in reply to Buffafly

Don't let him get away so easily 😉

He will be looking at these traces all day, every day so will be skilled in spotting trends that we don't see. As I understand it, AF is when the heartbeats are 'irregularly irregular'. In my case my ECGs have been described as showing atrial fibrillation, runs of atrial tachycardia AND frequent atrial bigeminy. As far as I can make out on my Kardia results I can see 'pairs' of pulses ('R-waves') that appear organised to me.

If you have an iPad, it works well with a Kardia. I found mine really useful for recording PAF which hid from official monitors but pestered me every few days. Wouldn’t be without it.

My cardiologists have been really enthusiastic about the Kardia! It is important to realise its limitations though. It was invented to show AF so other blips such as ectopics seem to be ignored or classed as 'unclassified'. However it is quite easy to learn to recognise ectopics, pauses etc which is useful because it is easy to mistake lots of ectopics for AF (though knowing they are not AF doesn't make them feel any better!). A couple of tips, wash hands before use and leave damp to get a good contact and keep very still when using, also keep away from other electrical gadgets.

Yes I get ectopics as well as AF they seem to last a long time when I get those, it's the AF that I get in short bursts or for a few hrs mostly in the middle of the night but because they can last from 5mins to 2/3hrs I never know when I should try n get an ECG, so thought a kardia might help me, the only thing that I'm not sure about is a lot of people on the reviews are saying you have to pay monthly for the app that you have to get with the kardia and they thought it was a rip off, I didn't realise you would have to pay for the app, have you got the app ?

Hi GF :-) no you don't pay for the App, this is what it looks like...


You pay to have the readings stored on the cloud I think, I emailed mine to myself and saved it on my laptop.

I know what you mean, and I did have the embarrassment of my AF stopping before the ambulance arrived 😳 I was told to call an ambulance if I had chest pain with AF but I can't bring myself to do it.

No I'm the same I've only ever called an ambulance once and that was when I had a really bad episode and I thought I was having a heart attack, I was so scared but even then I was worried it would stop lol x

I find mine invaluable . I got mine cheaper from PMS instruments Ltd...pmsinstruments.co.uk ...and found them an excellent company to deal with.

gingerfurball profile image
gingerfurball in reply to

Did you have to get the app with it and pay a monthly fee x

The App is part of the package. I paid about £72 two years ago. I have free lifetime premium membership as I was an early alivecor customer

It's £99 for the kardia and £9.99 a month for the app x

...I have just purchased it and the app is free to download.

I won't be paying to store my readings on the cloud I can store them myself so won't be paying a subscription.

Ha right I've got a Samsung can u store them yourself on that phone, I know it sounds tight but I'm happy to pay for the kardia I just think its a rip off that they expect you to pay for the app to store your readings x

GF I don't have a smart phone I have an Ipad and emailed the print out to myself and stored it on my laptop. I can now print it out or email it to anyone .

IanMK profile image
IanMK in reply to gingerfurball

Although I have an iPhone myself, I think the Android app allows you to put the pdf records in a Dropbox.

gingerfurball profile image
gingerfurball in reply to IanMK

That's interesting to know think I'll have to do a bit more research


Might have to get an iPad then, id rather do that then pay for an app lol, thankyou so much for your help x

App is free, the payment is for storage but there are lots of ways you can store readings yourself, no need to get an iPad or iPhone unless you want one anyway, should work with a Samsung, worth trying anyway. I use mine with an iPhone and a Nexus 7.

I like the Kardia device, a good educational tool for me, helps to see what is going on during an episode. And handy to be able to share those records with your dr. Of course when I first got it, it was like any new toy, I used it too often. :) The app is free for both iOS and Android. You only have to pay if you want to store lots of readings in their cloud storage, which is unnecessary. One tip from diff8ng through the user manual, you can get a cleaner (less interference) reading by holding the device on the lower left side of your chest. Phone or iPad has to be close by to record the reading.

The Kardia is a really useful tool for some people , but I find that it’s of no benefit to me with permanent AF. It just constantly reads Possible AF, and if I send it off to their consultant for interpretation it comes back a day later advising me to contact my medical consultant.

The only time it gave any other reading in the past couple of years was when I tried it on my daughter and even that was just to check that it wasn’t faulty.

I bought it because I’m a sucker for gimmicks! I even bought a tracker for the dog, so he has his own mobile number, although the tracker itself is too heavy for his collar. 😀

I am puzzled that some pay for storage. I have never paid for storage, as on the home screen the bar says 'History' or 'Record your EKG'. So I always have a record of my episodes to hand.

mjames1 profile image
mjames1 in reply to irene75359

You may have been grandfathered in. New users have to pay for the premium storage service after the first month

Brilliant device. Game changer for me.

Hey, don't get too worried about a "compatible phone". If your current mobile phone is a fairly modern smartphone with either Android or iOS operating systems, the Kardia will work. All that is needed is that it can run the App, either from the Play Store or the Apple store. Communication with the phone (or tablet!) is done by very high frequency audio, so anything with a microphone and the right OS should work fine.

There are some on here who are doubtful of this, and insist on the 'compatible list' as they have been stung, perhaps, by other systems not working well in the past. Kardia does not operate with non-Android/iOS such as used by Lumia and Microsoft, sorry. If you already have a mobile phone you like, the cheapest option will be to buy a low end Android tablet to use the Kardia with. Even my old rubbish Hudl from Tesco works with it, and I could give that to someone who needs it.

I would not be without my Kardia, see my posts.

radyeatlantic profile image
radyeatlantic in reply to momist

Sorry, but I've tested now with seven different Android mobiles in the family over the years and only three models worked. The key is if your mobile has a builtin secondary noise canceling microphone for voice operations. On one of the mobiles it did not work on at all. But I was able to turnoff the noise canceling microphone because the mobile was rooted. The Kardia then got about 50% signal. Enough to work. Oddly my main mobile which is an Asus Zoom Zenphone (not on the list) has the best signal of all the mobiles. In a quiet room, it has a range of about three feet from the sensor. A far better response than my Galaxy S5.

momist profile image
momist in reply to radyeatlantic

radyeatlantic, that's interesting. I've not heard of this problem (but then, I'm no expert). Can you remember the brands of phone that didn't work? It sounds as if it may be only the very high end phones (noise cancelling microphones) that have a problem. I've never paid more that £180 for a phone, or tablet, and probably never would (barring inflation). £1000 for an iphone just seems bizarre.

radyeatlantic profile image
radyeatlantic in reply to momist

The noise canceling microphones are becoming more common these days. The mobiles that did not work were..... an early model Huawei Y300. None of our various Acer tablets worked even after rooting and upgrading to Android 6+. Galaxy S3 with a 6.0.1 firmware. ZTE Z850 X2. Kobo Arc 10HD Tablet. LeTV LE1 on Nougat. Galaxy S1 (3rd party V5 Android). Nexus 7 2013 model with Android 7.1.2.

I queried with Alivecor about this issue of compatibility early on and they said they only listed models that they had physically tested and would not accept customer reports of working or not.

IanMK profile image
IanMK in reply to radyeatlantic

Thanks for this. I'm an electronics engineer and was concerned that there was a risk of this due to hardware differences and the lack of rigorous compatibility testing. I tried raising this on another thread but some other posters denied the existence of a problem.

It feels like you have written this on my behalf. That's what I love about this site. I don't always contribute but read it all the time there are so many knowledgeable contributors that I hardly ever have to bother my GP for advice. Thanks everyone

I bought one 6 ms ago I found it very useful ,they will give 1 month free subsciption abd after you have to oay9.99 $ per month

The only issue I have now I have been trying to stop the subscriptin but they wont let me and keep taking 9.99 of my account every month!!

IanMK profile image
IanMK in reply to falah12345

Here in the U.K. the fee for the optional monthly service is the equivalent of $13.22.

Buffafly profile image
Buffafly in reply to falah12345

Best not to sign up to the free month because like all these things it is too easy to get locked in 😡

Download the app to your phone. If it's not compatible you will be told when you try to download.

radyeatlantic profile image
radyeatlantic in reply to baba

A small correction. When you attempt to download the app, it will not be available to your model of phone if you don't meet the minimum requirements. However it will allow you to install it if you do meet the required Android or IOS versions. But just because it was installed, it does not mean the sensor will be read successfully. The only mobiles they guarantee are the models on their website.

For those like me new to Kardia when you have opened the App on the homepage, if you go to 'settings' (little green bars top left corner) then select 'Heart Education' then 'Arrhythmia Library' it gives examples of the different arrhythmias which can be compared with your own print out.

useful? overall yes. However, company is very stingy with YOUR data: they won't give you your own data in a useful format like CSV (comma separated) to allow further processing/tracking

Not perfect but useful. I have both the Kardia Mobile and the Apple Watch version. It does tend to generate false positives with "possible afib" if you have lots of ectopics so don't get freaked out. In general, if you get a normal reading soon thereafter, you probably were never in afib. But to be sure, you can always email your Kardia ekg to your doctor for evaluation. They also have a pro service in the U.S. where a cardio analyzes it for you but the costs can run up if you use that a lot. When it says "normal" you can usually be assured you're not in afib. "Unclassified" can mean your HR is either over 100 or under 50 or again too many ectopics. So take it again and again until you get something more definitive or send the ekg to your doctor.


I have had my Kardia for a number of years now and find it reliable and invaluable. It is very easy to use and keeps a record for you which you can show to medics. I use it with my Iphone and carry both it and my phone with me on a regular basis. I do not understand why you need an ambulance every time you go into AF. If I did that I would be in hospital most of the time. I can function perfectly well with mild AF which is just as well. As your AF is dropping in and out maybe you should consider having an ablation because I believe it is more effective when it is done before the AF becomes permanent.

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