The Microsoft Band will launch in Microsoft stores and online Thursday, October 30, for $199. As was rumored, the band features an elongated display that can track sleep, exercise and display notifications from your smartphone. The Microsoft Band is definitely more of a fitness tracker than a traditional smartwatch, though, packing 10 sensors to track things like heart rate, sun exposure and a galvanic skin response sensor that knows when you’re stressed.
Microsoft says that Band wearers can combine the data gathered during their work and personal lives to get a better idea of how events in one affect the other. Additionally, the Band can display weather and stock info, Facebook feeds and tweets from Twitter.
As noted in the leak from earlier today, Microsoft is also offering Health apps that are available on Android, iOS and Windows Phone. These apps gather data from the Band and display them in the Microsoft Health cloud service. The Microsoft Health cloud can also collect data from smartphones and even other fitness trackers, aiming to give you a big picture of your health.
There’s been a heavy focus on health in mobile lately, including dedicated devices from Jawbone, apps like Apple’s Health and Google Fit and more. It’s no surprise that Microsoft is aiming to get in on the action as well. What is interesting is that Microsoft Health works across Android, iOS and Windows Phone, which is a feature that could definitely help it gain some traction in the fitness space.
UPDATE: Microsoft’s Band site has officially gone live, giving us more details on the device’s features and specs. The Microsoft Band has a 1.4-inch 320x106 display and a pair of 100mAh batteries that Microsoft says will provide up to 48 hours of “normal use.” The Band is water and dust resistant and is compatible with Windows Phone 8.1, iOS 7.1 and up and Android 4.3 and 4.4 phones.
Microsoft has also revealed the full list of sensors that are packed inside the Band: optical heart rate sensor, 3-axis accelerometer, pyrometer, GPS, ambient light sensor, skin temperature sensor, UV sensor, capacitive sensor, galvanic skin response and microphone.
Rounding out the Microsoft Band’s feature set is support for text messages, incoming calls, email, calendar alerts, a Watch Mode, Facebook and Twitter alerts, weather forecasts, a Do-Not-Disturb mode, background design choices and support for a Starbucks card.