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November 7, 2014

Wearable Tech: Introducing the Microsoft Band

Live life to the fullest with the new Microsoft Band and Microsoft Health app.

Live life to the fullest with the new Microsoft Band and Microsoft Health app.

Microsoft has entered the world of wearable technology with the exciting new Microsoft Band, a Bluetooth-enabled smart band that helps you live healthier and be more productive. It works with the powerful Microsoft Health app for Windows Phone 8.1, iOS, and Android that can achieve your wellness goals.

Available right now in the United States, the sweat- and splash-resistant Band allows you to keep on top of your physical activity and communication, such as phone calls, emails and text messages, while your Lumia, other Windows Phone, iOS or Android device remains stowed in your pocket.


Indeed, rather than overwhelm you with floods of distracting information, the Microsoft Band shows the most useful and timely info at a glance, allowing you to focus on life’s fleeting moments.

First, let’s take a look at the Band’s fitness-related abilities.

The display will show a snapshot of health and wellness metrics, such as steps, calories, distance, and heart rate, thanks to the 24-hour heart rate sensor built right into the band. You can customize daily step and calorie goals and get guided workouts from the likes of Gold’s Gym, Shape and Men’s Fitness, putting the power of a personal trainer right onto your wrist.

Thanks to the UV monitor, the Band can enlighten you on days when the sun’s rays are more harmful. And don’t worry; even when you’re taking a break from working out, the Band can track the time and quality of your sleep.


Of course, everything harnessed by the Microsoft Band is securely stored in the brilliant new cloud-based Microsoft Health platform.

Via Microsoft Health, you’ll be able to spot activity patterns and work towards goals with personalized, actionable insights. You can find out which activities burn the most calories and understand your body’s optimum recovery time.

The Microsoft Health app is also an open platform designed to play nice with many of the existing wearable trackers and apps on the market, such as the Jawbone UP, and apps such as RunKeeper and MapMyFitness.

More than a fitness tracker

Now, let’s take a look at what else the Band can do. Thanks to Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity with your smartphone, you’ll see text messages, emails, incoming calls, calendar appointments and notifications from social networks flash up on the bright 1.4-inch full colour TFT display.


The display can be helpfully positioned on the inside of the wrist to be more discreet, and it’s also readable even in direct sunlight.

Also, thanks to the smart notifications settings, you’ll be in control of what does and doesn’t flash up on your wrist.

Microsoft Band also works with Cortana, your digital personal assistant available with the latest version of Windows Phone 8.1. That means you can set reminders, make appointments and write notes just by speaking into the Band. Go, Lumia!

The Microsoft Band comes in three sizes and is available online and in Microsoft retail stores, for $199. While it’s currently available only in the U.S., we look forward to continuing to innovate for the wearable market and with that, continue to expand to additional retail channels and markets in the future.