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Common Compatibility Questions

Why are only some devices compatible with the Butterfly iQ/iQ+?

The Butterfly iQ/iQ+ is a regulated medical device. As a medical device company, we are subject to regulatory oversight and cannot enable use of the Butterfly for mobile devices which we cannot verify meet our clinical imaging standards. 

Our goal is to provide a clinical imaging experience that is reliable, safe, and diagnostically accurate. In order to do so, we must thoroughly test any mobile device in order to approve its use with our platform.

I just got a new phone. Why isn't it compatible with my Butterfly yet?

Butterfly monitors device releases and selects devices for testing that are viable candidates and are expected to be popular among our customers. As a result, new devices are not immediately compatible with Butterfly when they are released.

Even brand new mobile devices with the latest technology might not meet our clinical imaging standards. For instance, some phones are specifically designed by the manufacturer to optimize for cost and battery life instead of performance, and therefore might not have the necessary processing power to perform high-quality diagnostic imaging. As a result, all devices are subject to the same thorough testing process before we can support use.

Can I use a Lightning to USB-C adapter?

Third-party adapters are not compatible with our data stream and are not supported. That said, if you have a Butterfly iQ+, you can purchase a swappable cable to expand your iQ+'s compatibility with either a Lightning or USB-C connector in the Butterfly Store.

Can I use the Butterfly iQ with a computer with a USB-C port?

Butterfly probes require use of the Butterfly iQ app, which is only available on select devices running iOS or Android. As a result, Butterfly is not compatible with computers that have USB-C connectivity, such as a MacBook.

Does image quality change if I use a different mobile device?

Ultrasound data saved by a Butterfly probe is the same no matter on what screen it is viewed. Some mobile devices have higher resolutions or different color temperatures than others, and therefore the same images might appear differently.  In addition, the dimensions of your image will vary based on the size of your device’s screen. For instance, tablet devices have a wider field-of-view than phones, and the Butterfly iQ app uses a wider field-of-view on tablet devices when saving images. The dimensions of the image stored will vary depending on the size of the device used when capturing it, but the quality of the ultrasound image itself will remain consistent.

We recommend our customers select a mobile device that best meets their clinical needs. If you are looking for a device for abdominal scanning in an outpatient clinic, you might prefer a tablet with a wider field-of-view and larger screen, but if you are using your Butterfly in an emergent setting, a phone that can fit in a scrub coat pocket might be a better option.

We’re proud of Butterfly’s versatility, and the majority of our users find that their ultrasound works with the personal mobile devices they already own.

Which devices have failed compatibility testing?

We do our best to improve our App's performance with every software update so that we can expand our compatibility to as many devices as possible. That said, there are some devices we do not anticipate supporting in the future. Below is an incomplete list of some devices that have failed to meet our technical requirements:

  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite
  • Google Pixel 3a and 3a XL
  • Google Pixel 4a and 4a XL
  • Google Pixel 5
  • Samsung Galaxy Z Fold
  • Samsung Galaxy Z Flip
  • Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2
  • Samsung Galaxy S10 International (non-US and Canada) variants
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 10 International (non-US and Canada) variants
  • Samsung Galaxy S8/S8+ US Edition
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 8 US Edition
  • Samsung Galaxy S7 US Edition
  • Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge US Edition
  • Huawei Mate 10 Lite
  • Huawei P20 Lite
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab A - 2018 (Model SM-T590)
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S5e
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 (Model SM-T830)
  • Xiaomi MiPad4 (Model M1806D9W)

Will Butterfly ever stop supporting my mobile device?

Our goal is to continue supporting all the devices we currently support. That said, as technology advances and we release new hardware and software updates, certain older devices might not be compatible with the latest probe or feature. If we do cease compatibility with certain mobile devices in the future, we will notify any customers affected by such a change.

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