If Microsoft Health ever lives up to its ambitious goals, it could be game-changing. But right now, the Microsoft Band is the only device available for it. And the Band seems more like a prototype than a consumer device. It's bulky, uncomfortable and has disappointing battery life. You could get a comfortable fitness tracker for less, or a capable smartwatch for a few bucks more.
- Works on iOS, Android and Windows Phone
- Lots of data, thanks to a raft of sensors
- App has a clean design and shows promise
- Connects to Cortana on Windows Phone
- Guided workouts are extremely helpful
- Hardware is uncomfortable and poorly designed
- Microsoft Health is mostly promise
- Smartwatch-like battery life
- Does too many things, many of them poorly
- Seriously, the Band is really uncomfortable
- Critic Reviews (8)
- User Reviews (47)
- 65AVERAGE CRITIC SCORE8 ReviewsCNET70Microsoft's ambitious fitness band tries to be eveMicrosoft Band is an ambitious first crack at a smart health wearable that throws in a ton of features and cross-platform support, but it's just not as easy to use or as functional as it should be.Engadget70Microsoft Band review: A tale of pitfalls and promiseThe Band seems more like a prototype than a consumer device. It's bulky, uncomfortable and has disappointing battery life. You could get a comfortable fitness tracker for less, or a capable smartwatch for a few bucks more.PC Mag70Microsoft BandThe Microsoft Band may be teeming with features not found in most other activity trackers, but none of that matters if you can't stand wearing the thing.Gizmodo Australia60Microsoft Band Review: Tracks Your Every Move, TheThe Microsoft Band isn’t terrible, and there’s plenty of room for it to improve with updates later on. It’s just too bad the Band shipped half-baked.The Verge60Microsoft Band reviewThe Band hardware needs a lot of work, and the software needs to be fully realized and tuned ... If you’re in the market for a fitness tracker right now, this probably isn’t the one to buy. It's a prototype, and an expensive one. It's a first try, because Microsoft had to start somewhere.Yahoo80Microsoft Band: Beautiful â€¦ on the InsideYes, the Band is chunky and industrial looking. But it’s got more features for its size than any rival yet, and it does a lot of things no other gadget can. And the fact that Microsoft intends to make it as compatible as possible? That’s going to be healthy both for Microsoft and for you.Digital Trends40MICROSOFT BAND REVIEWWith sensors to Sunday and more power than a race car, Microsoft’s Band is the most advanced fitness band ever. It’s also a simply bad product.PocketNow70Microsoft Band review: donâ€™t call it a smartwatcThis is very much a “version 1″ product ... As things are right now, the Microsoft Band and Microsoft Health system is pretty good, but the really interesting thing will be watching it improve as the software evolves.
- 85AVERAGE USER SCORE47 ReviewsYvonne70November 13, 2019Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Personally I'm a ride and die fan for this watch.....easy to use....the hardest issue that I found to be very, very irritating was the design of the band!....it literally fell apart---is there a band that can be interchangable?Engadget Reader40September 29, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Purchased the band upon initial release, and like many was excited. As with other Microsoft products, you would expect something of good quality and neat technical features. Initially, I was not overly disappointed. Although the band itself felt a little cheap (given the hefty day 1 UK price tag), the features were what you would expect from such a device and setting up and using was also a relatively painless product.Further testing revealed the GPS can be a little sketchy at times, as is the case with the pedometer which can overestimate both steps and distances by some way when pushed further (the irony being that measuring the same activity via both the pedometer and accurate GPS would give you two fairly different results).After a few months use, the battery charging point seemed to become a little more intermittent, despite following all the correct care procedures within the documentation accompanying the device. However, after less than 6 months, while out on a bike ride, the device snapped. Further investigation shows the band had clearly worn away at the join between the clasp and the band itself.Not an issue I thought, I would just send it in for warranty repair. And then the fun began. Despite acknowledging the fact the band had failed and the device had ended up planted on the road as a result (remember, this is a band sold for activities such as running, cycling etc), after a wait of over 2 weeks I received my device back in the same state, with a note telling me due to the damage the warranty was now void, and the device would not be repaired.Rather comically, the note failed to even register the fact that the device was damaged as a result of the strap breaking. After contacting support, I was told my case would be reviewed. I then received another response telling me due to the damage my warranty was void. Again, a complete failure to grasp the concept that the device WAS damaged, because it fell to the ground when the device snapped.Still not happy with the response, I attempted to appeal again, only to be replied by the same person, who now made reference to a battery being detached (which is not and never has been the case), and upon further review the decision still remained. The long (and short of it) is the device has failed during normal daily use. Perhaps the device itself was one of a bad batch, a fault in the material or some other reason, but the point blank refusal by Microsoft to even acknowledge the damage is caused by the device falling to the floor, and the whole chicken/egg scenario of this, has left me with a device rendered useless, with the warranty voided after less than 6 months normal use, and a long battle on my hand.Having used other products in the past, and knowing of other people who have received excellent support from other companies such as Fitbit with similar products, I would suggest avoiding this product altogether if you want to use it to track activity. If you want something to check messages, e-mails etc, buy a smart watch, if you want something to track activity, buy a Garmin, Pebble, Fitbit, Jawbone or one of the other devices.Engadget Reader90August 20, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!As mentioned by others I have felt compelled to write this review following the raft of inaccurate reviews from so called experts. The complaint from a lot of professional reviewers is that the band is terribly uncomfortable. If you look through the reviews from those who actually have one though you see the opposite. Mainly people say they don't notice they have it on. What is going on then? I'd hazard a guess it relates to the difference between paying money to buy a product (which leads you to try an work out how best to use it) and being given a product to review where you have no such vested interest. Yes when I first tried on my band it seemed uncomfortable. So I tried different places on my arm, turning it round to face inwards or adjusting the strap tightness. As others have found with a little fiddling around I had a way of wearing it that suited me and by day two, I didn't notice I had it on. I guess many of those who don't find it comfortable either haven't tried to optimise the best position for them or have purchased the wrong sized band.The second issue for the Band, is that because it has smart watch like features (such as text notifications) it sometimes get judged as a smart watch. In reality itâ€™s a fantastic fitness tracker with some added smart watch features that assist you in your daily life. Itâ€™s not really a smart watch and should be judged as such. If you primary interest is picking up texts from your phone or looking cool with your mates, go get an Apple watch (so long as you are not worried about the accuracy of any fitness data you are generating). If you actually want an accurate and useable fitness tracker that has some nice added features that save you having to get your phone out quite so often then the band might be just what you need.Getting off my soapbox and on to my actual review. I have had the Band for about 3 months now. And though itâ€™s not perfect I do think itâ€™s a great piece of Kit. I use it primarily to track my sleep, my cycle rides to work, my runs and my heart rate. Itâ€™s great that it has GPS and so long as you wait for the GPS to lock before you start your run then it works brilliantly. Iâ€™d say most days it does this within 30 seconds though on occasion I have had to wait longer. I found the heart rate monitoring to be good but t it only works during bike rides if you reverse the band so that the face is down and the heart rate monitor is up (took me a few days to work that one out). Incidentally from what I know about optical heart rate measurements you need to make sure that the device is not fitted too tight as this generates inaccuracies in the data. Heart rate measurement during movement is tricky for any of the current technologies but the Band seems to do a good job as best I can tell based on how hard I perceive I have worked versus the measured values. Static values compared to measurements I took on a blood pressure meter were accurate. I love the continuous heart rate measuring feature that allows you to track your heat rate through the night. The band detects when you are asleep based on your movements. It of course cannot tell if you are lying very still but awake for long periods, but seems to do a good job of telling me when I was asleep and I find this a very useful feature for trying to encourage me to sleep more. You can set an alarm on the band to wake you up at a set time and it does this with a discrete buzz that seems a gentle way to wake up and which doesnâ€™t disturb your partner. Finally in terms of features the text notification is useful, not least as you can quickly check whether you need to respond or not without getting your phone out.In terms of battery life some have complained it doesnâ€™t last as long as they would like. Personally I think the key factor is whether you fit the amount of time needed for charging into your daily routine. I take it off to go in the shower and then put it on charge, I then put it back on again when I am dressed around 30 minâ€™s later. This seems enough charge time to support my needs which are usually continuous heart rate measurements, sleep tracking, receiving texts and two 25 min bike rides with GPS on. The magnetic charging clasp is brilliant and I wish my phone charged in the same way rather than the hideously flimsy Micro-USB solution most phones now have.So after so many positives what could be better? Well first up the screen is easy to scratch (donâ€™t use it whilst gardening is my tip!) Second I would love it to be waterproof. Not so much so I can shower in but more as it would allow me to track swimming which would be brilliant. My final wish might seem churlish after I have so extensively praised the function of the Band but I would love it to be slightly less understated. No-one notices you are wearing it which might be what you are after, but for something that is inherently so amazing I would love more people to ask me about it!Engadget Reader90June 21, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - EngadgetEngadget Reader90May 25, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!have had MS band since around Xmas 2014 time--little awkward first getting used to it but by day 2 don't even really notice it;a bit short on battery life but for me functional battery life here is wo the watch function is about 2 days (20 hrs or so) but use it to count steps, cals, also usually put in 40 min to 1 hour of workout 5 d/week and about 1 1/2 to 2 hours of pickup soccer; also I use it to track texts, calls, e mails as a screener; never use it to track my sleep as I usually turn it off then and recharge every other day; fully depleted it would take about 1 1/2 hours chargingwish I could wash this as opposed to just wiping it dry; I have accidentally showered with it and seemed to do OK wo problemsmain issue now is clasp is loose so it has to go back to MS for repair/replacement--overall rating 88/100wish list--waterproof to about 2 to 5 meters for those who like to swim; longer battery life, better clasp mechanismEngadget Reader80May 5, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws. - EngadgetEngadget Reader50May 1, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!I bought this on a whim when it first came out in the Fall. I was hoping this could do all the fitness tracking of my Jawbone (it can) and that it could provide me with all the notifications I would want ( it mostly can, but I still have to pull out my phone). I was basically hoping that this could keep me from buying an Apple Watch. When I saw it in person I thought "oh, this is a unique design and doesn't feel terrible on the wrist," when I first bought it. But over time, I realized A) it's an eye-sore and B) good grief this thing is uncomfortable worn loose or tight. I think this stems from the fact that it's the same width & thickness all the way around and that it has very little give/bend to it. At times, Bluetooth syncing has been a real pain. I give Microsoft props for trying a design to differentiate itself from the market and having the device work on iOS, Android, and Windows. However, it's really difficult to want to wear a device this uncomfortable day in and day out. I am interested to see where 3rd party app developers take this thing as the SDK has just been released. I hope Microsoft can take the lessons learned from this device and make something so comfortable you forget you're wearing it AND can actually answer calls and respond to notifications without digging one's phone out of pocket. Currently, if you own an iPhone and are trying to decide between this and the Apple Watch, I'd say spend the extra on the Watch because it will do everything you want and you can forget you're wearing it until you get a nice little haptic vibration.Engadget Reader90March 12, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget13xforever70March 8, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The good: MS Band looks good, performs fine and is in a constant improvement state on all sides of things (watch firmware, smartphone apps, desktop app, Health service, etc.). The battery life is actually better than I was expecting (up to 4 days on a full charge). Microsoft is listening to the feedback and very open to the 3rd parties.The bad: it's bulkiness is at the level where it is being distracting sometimes. The support for international usage is non-existent at this time (it is limited to US for a very good reason): you can't read anything but Latin being the most prominent issue. You can't store and process the data locally on your phone or desktop, you HAVE to use Microsoft Health web service. Integration with 3rd party apps is very limited at this time (but the SDK preview is starting to roll out, so there's hope). The hardware itself is not very future-proof and quite modest already.Overall, I feel that MS Band is indeed the best smart watch / fitness tracker you can get the band for the buck out there right now. It has its share of problems, and it is a prototype first and a product second (that's part of the reason you can't get it easily). If you accept that you're getting a playground model that will be phased out pretty quickly for a much better model in a year or two, you might consider to get it right now. You'll get a device that you can tinker with, to see the evolution of the software and services around it in real time, you will be able to influence it via a direct feedback.But if you just want a device that will just work, and will be unnoticable most of the time, just wait for a Mk. II in a year or two, you'll get a much better deal then.Engadget Reader90January 31, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - EngadgetEngadget Reader90January 30, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!I've had my MS Band since day 1. It does everything I want it to do. I find it as comfortable as any other fitness band I've tried, and I've been through most of them. The GPS is great and the HR works very well. It may not be as accurate as a chest strap, but it's good enough for my needs. The battery lasts more than a day which is great for me. I charge it every morning while I eat breakfast, shower, and check the news. Maybe I miss 100 steps during that time on some days, but that really isn't a concern for me. The only complaint I have would be in regards to the software. It could use some tweaking, but I have yet to find any competing software that couldn't use some. Fitbit probably is my favorite right now, but MS Health gives me what I need and I'll take my MS Band over their new bands. As for comparing this to smartwatches, well this isn't a smartwatch and doesn't claim to be. I love getting my notification on the MS Band, but anything else I'll do on my phone. I don't want a smartwatch, but I love my MS Band.Engadget Reader80January 30, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!It surprises me to see so many hating on the Band. I thought wearables were a joke until this came out. The fitbits track my steps like a pedometer which I can get for free through my employer's health program. Why would I Pay $100 for that? Smart watches tell me what my phone is telling me by ringing or vibrating. I'll skip the $250 for a smartwatch and just take my phone out of my pocket. Garmins force me to strap on a chest band for heart rate, Adidas Mi Coach is GIGANTIC. None of them work for me.The band gives me on-board GPS so I can leave my phone behind during my activities. The band gives me built in heart rate. The band allows me to choose a workout routine that i like and get step by step coaching right on the band. It offers the option of seeing notifications from my phone, and it allows me to decide what I do and don't see. I can use Cortana to set reminders or send texts. I can pay for Starbucks (can't tell you how many Baristas have said it's the coolest thing they've ever seen). I can get a UV "analysis", though the results are very basic and probably worthless.So, a new device does all this at a price LESS than what the new fitbit with similar functionality will cost, and it gets panned? Why? Because it's uncomfortable...which isn't even true. I will not argue at all that it feels different from a watch due to the rigid band. But, guess what...after a day of wearing the thing it disappears as much as any wrist wearable does. I wear mine with display on top as it does become entirely uncomfortable for me with display on bottom. For this reason, I could see it not fitting some people well as it seems to be sensitive to your particular wrist. But, for me I don't even notice it anymore.BTW, the article says it's $275. Above it says it's $318. That's just flat out wrong. It's $199 from Microsoft. Add $10 for the screen protector which is basically a must, and add in $20 for a 1-time accidental damage replacement. At this point, you've still payed less than a fitbit Surge, you get more functionality, and you have a free replacement in the event of accidental damage. I don't grasp how that gets rated so low.I wish people would stop hating on it and promote it for the wonderful device it is so that we could get more developers supporting new functionality, more gyms providing guided workouts, etc. With mainstream support, rather than the typical MS haters, this device could do incredible things!Engadget Reader100January 27, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!A gadget unicorn - EngadgetEngadget Reader100January 26, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!A gadget unicorn - EngadgetEngadget Reader90January 26, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Works well with my Lumia 920. I use it to track my runs and sleep mainly. It's also nice to read my texts and to issue Cortana Commands (music control mainly). That being said, it would be nice to be able to view the data from a web interface and have a more reliable BT connection (sometimes texts won't get pushed to the Band)Engadget Reader80January 26, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!A great personal device but a poor fitness tracker. If it was just a fitness tracker, I would've taken my band back, already. The Band calorie burn numbers are pretty much useless. I bought it to replace a Body Media armband that I've worn for the better part of two years, and am pretty familiar with what my ballpark numbers should be. The step count and heart rate numbers look good, though, (which gives me some hope that things will eventually improve with future software updates).The reason I am keeping my band is because the notification features have been really, really useful. I used to miss half of my calls because I keep my phone on vibrate, and didn't hear or feel it go off. I also spend a lot of time in meetings, and like that I can keep discrete tabs on things with a quick glance at my wrist. The other, general, criticisms for the Band haven't been issues for me. I became used to wearing it after a couple hours, and I switch it between hands to keep it from irritating my skin. Battery life hasn't been an issue. I just charge it whenever I'm at my desk and the battery level is under half. 15-20 minutes and it's at a decent level again. I've only had one low battery warning so far.Vu2You90January 26, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The Microsoft Band has been fantastic for me. But not just because of its current incarnation, but also because of all the potential it contains. Keep in mind that because the device was released before the software was done, some of the sensors are not even enabled yet. The Microsoft Band has 10 sensors! Optical heart rate sensor, 3-axis accelerometer/gyro, Gyrometer, GPS, Ambient light sensor, Skin temperature sensor, UV sensor, Capacitive sensor, Galvanic skin response, and Microphone. Other fitness devices and smartwatches typically have 1-3 sensors. You can never add sensors to those devices. They will never do more than what they currently do. You're expected to buy new revisions of those devices to get future sensors. With the Microsoft Band, as the software improves, more and more of its sensors will become active.The MS Band aims to do what I expect out of a watch. I don't want a watch to replicate my smartphone into a watch. I have a smartphone that I will always carry with me so no need to have a watch for those purposes. What I want is a device that can augment or supplement what my phone can do. The Microsoft Band will always be able to do things that no smartphone will ever be able to do because no smartphone will have the complement of sensors that the MS Band has.Potential aside, how is the Band? Its potential is already being tapped by third-party developers. I can now change and customize wallpapers for the device. There is another app to tap the galvanic sensor. I can't wait for more software to be released for the Band. The battery life is longer than the smartwatches out there. Sure it's not as long as many fitness bands but it has a full display (some of the other bands don't even have displays). The battery life of the Apple Watch is 2.5-4 hours. This makes the Band's 48 hours seem luxurious. 48 hours is a bit optimistic. If you want to get to 48 hours, you have to disable a lot (have the display off until awoken, have haptic feedback disabled, etc.). That said, battery life will be over a day unless you use GPS (GPS will kill any device).I love the notifications. I can read email. I get alarm notifications. I get Cortana news. The sleep functionality is great. The GPS is fantastic. Step counting improves the more you use the device, especially if you use the exercise measurements.The only negatives for me are the 48 hours makes recharging a bit difficult to schedule. The other negative is the band only really grips your wrist on two sides. So you have to wear the band a little tighter so that it doesn't slide up and down your forearm. However, I've gotten used to the Band. It's not as comfortable as a watch so hopefully the next iteration is more comfortable. I don't even notice the band anymore.Engadget Reader90January 25, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - EngadgetEngadget Reader80January 25, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!I don't understand why everyone hates on the Microsoft Band - though I guess because (a) it had a poorly handled marketing strategy and (b) it feels like a "Me, Too!" device. But, as someone who has had every device from Basis, BodyMedia, Garmin, FitBit ... this is exactly the device I have been looking for. Cons (because the trolls have some valid points)Accuracy. The step counter increments while I'm driving. Never seen this on any other device. The standard burn Calories vary wildly from 1800 to 2400 on a low-activity day. Basis and BodyMedia both were consistently 2350-2400 on such days. GPS. The GPS antennae are too small, so it takes forever to get a signal. Also, the GPS can use a 40% charge on a 1hr run, which is not really acceptable. Weather. The weather app never works. I just gave up.Sync to iPhone. Terrible. First, why two bluetooth connections? Secondly, why does the LE connection fail every time I try to sync, and then I have to go through a 10-step, 10 minute process to sync. Form factor. Also a Pro, but the screen does interfere when I'm typing lazily and resting my wrists on the keyboard (which I shouldn't be doing, I know). But the screen is pretty well thrashed. If it were slightly recessed from the bezel, it would have fared better. Pros (because for some reason the editors all miss this)Sensors. This isn't a FitBit. It has all the sensors of a Basis B1, plus a GPS, plus smartwatch, plus a Galvanic Skin Response (GSR), plus the weirdly useless UV sensor. Stop comparing it to a FitBit just because it has the same convenient form factor. This is a swiss-army of fitness devices. Yes, it is a jack-of-all-trades / master-of-none ... but that's fine. I would rather have my step count slightly off, than to carry a B1 and a Garmin and a FitBit. Optical HRM. I've tested and found the HRM on the Basis is more accurate than the HRM on the Basis B1 while exercising. Comfort. After the first week, I don't even notice it 90% of the time. its light and comfortable. Battery. No, this isn't a con. The Basis B1 needs to be charged every day. So does the iPhone. So does the MS Band. It charges in 20 minutes. You shower for about 20 minutes. Coincidence? Form Factor. As compared with the Basis B1 or BodyMedia which are both hideous and are both obviously conversation starters ... the Microsoft Band has dramatically reduced the number of people who find it acceptable to walk up to a stranger and tell them about their "couch to 10k" programs ... which is a reason to buy the MS Band in itself. Honestly, some software updates would be appreciated. A comprehensive strategy within Microsoft would be appreciated (i.e. Why is there no web portal for MS Health? Why does MS Health not sync to MS HealthValut). The Pro-Band lobby seems a bit myopic here - it has significant flaws - but its still marginally better than the competition. Fixing the accelerometer to stop counting steps while driving or while on the subway would be very helpful. Basis did that with a software update (well, it was biking for them). Also, better analytic tools - or an export function - would be appreciated (why can't i view my full-day HRM? its logged. let me see it). Lastly, better documentation would be appreciated (when is the GSR sensor used? is it tracking anything?). I think that many editors have confused the accelerometer-only FitBit-type devices with actual fitness monitors, and the Microsoft Band is being unfairly compared with devices it soars over. Its like doing a 0-60 road test on a Boeing 787 and saying a Porsche 911 is better because it costs less and starts faster.Engadget Reader90January 24, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!There are many things I love about my Microsoft Band. To give a little insight into my experience, I'm not a competitive athlete by any stretch of the imagination! I'm trying to increase my activity, get back in shape and improve my overall health. I'm also a Windows Phone user and have been using my band for about two weeks. I started out looking for a simple activity tracker but all the added features of the MS Band were enticing. What I like:Screen: It's vibrant, easy to read and I like the ability to personalize it! Sleep tracking: I was indifferent about this until I started using it. I honestly didn't realize how little I was sleeping. Tracking this information has given me valuable insight and has motivated me to make a more concerted effort to get more restful sleep. GPS: This is a feature I wasn't really looking for but quite enjoy. I'm not a runner but I've used it on my walks and I like the graphic display of my route along with the other stats provided once I sync with the Microsoft Health App. Sync: Easy and painless process for me.Notifications: Even though it wasn't a "must have" for me, I've found I like the ability to get notifications from my phone on my Band. There are several notifications you can choose (i.e. text, email, Facebook, Twitter, etc.) but I've only enabled a few of the ones that are most valuable to me. Microsoft Health App: Nice interface, easy to use.Neutral:Heart Rate Monitor: I like that I don't have to deal with a chest strap. Since I don't have a chest strap I've only been able to test it against the reading on the equipment at my gym. I've found that sometimes the readings are an exact match and other times, the readings can be off by about 3-5 beats. When I make changes to my intensity, it often takes a few seconds for the reading on the Band to catch up to the reading on the gym equipment. While I would like it to be more exact, I feel that it's adequate for my purposes. Band: I wish it was slightly less bulky and rigid but I imagine I would have to give up some of the stuff I like to get that. At first I thought it was uncomfortable but I wear it with the screen on the inside of my non-dominant wrist and I find it easy to view and I don't notice it most of the time. I wear it up high enough on my wrist that it does not interfere with typing on my keyboard when I'm working.Battery Life: I was worried about the batter life after reading several reviews. Although it would be great if the battery would last a little longer in between charges, I've incorporated charging into my daily schedule so it doesn't cause much disruption in my usage.What I'd like to see:Web Interface: I wish there was a way to login online to see my data.3rd Party Integration and/or Data Exportability: I've got my Band set up to sync with My Fitness Pal and that works well but I would like to have additional options (such as Strava) and/or the ability to export my data. I looked into a variety of options before settling on the Microsoft Band. While there were Pros and Cons to everything I tried, I found the Microsoft Band to be the one to best suit my needs overall. Additionally, I feel the price is reasonable for all the features it contains.Engadget Reader50January 24, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Had mine about a month before I took it back. First, my gripe. The heartrate monitor simply does not work properly. The sleep event is supposed to record your heartrate over the duration of your sleep. I'd say it did so two or three times out of the 30 nights I used it. Same for workouts. Example: I climbed 30 flights of stairs - believe me my heart was going - my workout in MS Health showed zero heartrate. Same for other workouts (stationary bike, stairstepper). I suppose it could be that the Band recorded HR, but it did not transfer to MS Health properly. Whatever, same result as far as I'm concerned. If you search out the forums, the heartrate functionality is all over the place - for some it works, for others it is not accurate. And these are people who are comparing it to a (known to be accurate) cheststrap. I can't find another post where it outright does not work though.Next - fit. I read the reviews before purchase, and was expecting something like a handcuff, or a shackle. I actually thought it was not bad at all. In fact I kind of liked the design, dull maybe, but it seems right somehow. Substantial, not flimsy. Reminds me of the reviews for the 5" smartphones way back when - EVERY reviewer bellyached about the size (I'm looking at you Mossberg), paying little heed to the functionality. Now, the big phones are all the rage.All other functionality - notifications, weather, recording workouts & syncing to MS Health - was great. I usually have my phone turned down, or in my pocket, and might miss a call or a text, but Band would vibrate and so I caught calls I otherwise would have missed. Nice. Screen swiping worked very well. Starbucks feature didn't work. And kinda hard to read Kindle books, since the screen is so small.*Really liked the device, really wanted it to work, but for me it didn't. In fact I liked it so much that I'm going to try another, once Microsoft Store ** has them in stock. If HR works on that, then I'm totally satisfied.* jk about the Kindle** MS Store is a nightmare. You can't call store directly to see if they have it in stock, you have to call 800 number. And what do they tell you ? "Umm, you have to go to the store." Then I go to store, associate says "Oh SORRY we just sold the last one" (a line they tell everybody I suspect). Ok fine when do you expect next shipment ? "Don't know". Ok, when was the last shipment, and the shipment before that, and I'll do the math? "Oh we get them two or three times a week". Oh so this weekend maybe ? (Calls manager). "The next shipment should be here in two weeks".Engadget Reader90January 24, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - EngadgetEngadget Reader90January 24, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Love the band. Have been using it for more than 2 months now; can't imagine not using it now. Email/text notifications are a life and time saver for me; sleep tracking is great, and helped me find what to avoid few hours before for a sound sleep. Guided workouts are great! And battery life is never a problem. Usually a charge during shower every day, and charges pretty quickly to 80%. Next 20% takes bit more time, and I usually do that every few days (3-5 days).I would have loved a screen protector or a scratch resistant screen. For those who say the flat screen/band doesn't fit well on wrist top, it is supposed to be worn inside, and it perfectly fits. Only issue is using it turned inside when typing or sitting on desktop and working. My workaround is just turning it around and wearing it on top (and loose) while typing or working, and voila, no issues any more!Definitely recommend it!Engadget Reader90January 23, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Here are the two biggest complaints I've heard from anyone about the Band:It's not comfortableThe battery life is disappointingAs far as the first point goes, yes, the Band is uncomfortable - if you wear it wrong. So are shoes, if you put them on the wrong feet. Let me explain: the natural instinct is to cinch the clasp tight so that the Band holds snugly in one place. Fetishists and felons wear handcuffs this way. This is not how wrist accessories are meant to be worn, and - as unbelievable as it may be - if you adjust the Band to be worn loosely as you would wear a watch, it's suddenly just as comfortable as one. The rule of thumb I learned when I first started wearing a watch was that you should be able to fit two fingers (side by side, not stacked) between your wrist and the back of the watch, and that rule works equally well here. Engadget got this so wrong that I think they owe Microsoft a full retraction, now. The Band really is comfortable to wear. Period.What about the heart rate monitoring in this situation? Well, your mileage may vary, but for the casual monitoring the Band performs, the sensor still tracks my heart rate perfectly well. Although the Band is not tight against my wrist, most of the time the sensor is right up against my skin and heart rate tracking locks in within a minute every time.As for the battery life, I have but two remarks: if you can't find 30 minutes a day where you are sitting in one place and can plug in the band, buy two, because you're too active. And if you aren't satisfied with a two-day battery life, as I've experienced in real-world usage even with the watch mode enabled, then what you need is a time machine to the future where batteries don't suck, not a smartwatch of today. Demanding any more is completely unrealistic and, frankly, completely unnecessary.Once these two issues are resolved - not by Microsoft, mind you, but by left-field reviewers checking their absurd expectations - the Band is a magical experience. A brilliant, fully-functioning, cross-platform smartwatch experience that has even bigger and better things on the horizon, plus an amazing fitness tracker loaded with sensors - what's not to like?Engadget Reader90January 23, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Critics and professional review sites should be ashamed of themselves for talking so badly about a product that is not even targeted at the people they think its targeted at. Do marathon runners spend $200 on a fitness gadget? NO, they spend thousands of dollars on dedicated gps trackers and things like nutritionists and trainers. So when the biggest attack on the Microsoft Band is for battery life and not being 100% accurate they are doing it wrong. I am on the low-average end of the fitness spectrum, I spend about an hour a day focused on fitness with maybe 20-40 minutes of that running/jogging and using the GPS on the Band. My battery life has never gone under 75%, so when people complain about the battery life not being more than 3-4 hours for GPS while running, I really want to know, who the hell do they think is running 4 hours a day that would be using a $200 gadget from a non fitness company? For what the band costs, and what it offers it is a great device. The only dings i can give it are on comfort and the easily scratched screen, but even those are just slightly. The screen is great, the battery life is amazing for an average user, it has been very accurate every time I have compared it to other devices at the same time. Stop listening to what the professional critics are saying and read what the actual users of a device are saying.gmaimone80January 23, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!This device has been exactly what I wanted out of a 24/7 wearable. Battery life is no issue, only charge it when I am in the shower in the morning and have not had any issues of it running dead on me. I agree with other comments wishing that the notifications cleared when viewed on the phone, but the notifications themselves are great. The software has a good user interface but I can not wait for there to be more capability of drilling down on the data. The GPS and guided workouts have really helped me get back into my routine after taking too much time off. Overall I think this is a very good device and would buy it again, but I also look forward to how MS will evolve the next iteration.Engadget Reader80January 23, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!I ditched my Fitbit for the Microsoft Band. The main draw for me was its ability to monitor heart rate and the built in GPS. I liked the idea of going for a run with nothing else. However, since there is no The Microsoft Band excels as a data collection device. It can track the key health metrics of my day and the recent firmware upgrade seems to have addressed the issues with step tracking. The piece Microsoft has yet to address is the experience outside of the device. This is an area where Fitbit has nailed it. I did not fully appreciate the Fitbit ecosystem until I left it. I find myself missing the step rankings and the weekly summary emails which gave me a run down of my key statistics and how it compared to my overall trends. Data collection is great but right now Microsoft does not really give you the ability to do anything with this data. I hope this is an area Microsoft looks to build out with their health platform. While the battery life is not great, it is good enough. It will last approximately 2 days with normal use. If you take advantage of the GPS feature when you run or play sports, you will have to recharge the device. When I play football, I like to use the GPS feature which shows all of the various sprinting I did on the field which is just cool to look at. However, this really does drain the battery and I have to make sure I have a full charge before I play. If you are only going for an hour long run, the band will last a solid day. I use it every morning to monitor my heart rate when I lift weights and it will typically last almost 2 days. Microsoft will also need to address the charging contact at some point. Between running and lifting, it gets dirty and requires a cleaning every now and then. One aspect of the device I did not think I would enjoy as much as I do were the onscreen notifications. It really is refreshing to not have to take my phone out of my pocket to see an incoming text or phone call. It is also nice to not have to check your phone during a meeting to see if it is something important. Also very handy when you are home laying around the house and your phone is in another room. Microsoft's launch partners were also a nice touch. The Starbucks integration is useful and I use it all the time and I enjoyed the free Zagg protector I got with it. Overall, I think this is a great a device with a lot of potential but it definitely is a first generation advice.Engadget Reader70January 23, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Very simple review after having two of these for two weeks (wife had the small one)The Bad-The charging port gave us allergic reactions after a few days of dedicated use (I assume due to the impure metals that are used on it).-The screen scratched super easily with very light use... the screen protector that MSFT sent us came days later from the original shipment (its not like I was going to wait to use my Band!)-It was only comfortable when facing down (which isn't super useful since it scratches when its down.The Good-App for WP8 was fantastic! The hardware certainly does its job well and it gave us a really good look into our sleep cycles! Overall - I love the concept and if they make a gen 2 thats similar to the Fitbit Surge...I would certainly consider buying and not returning it!Engadget Reader90January 23, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!I've worn my band every day for a couple months now, and it's been fantastic. The text and email notifications I use all day long. I never wanted my phone to give me a notification when I received an email, since I just get so many - but having the subject and first couple lines pop up discretely on my wrist is perfect.Add in the fitness tracking that's exactly what I'm looking for, with on board GPS and heart rate monitor - and sleep tracking that includes heart rate - this thing is the bees knees.For the first couple days, it was a bit uncomfortable for me. I didn't wear a watch before, so I just had to get used to something there. Now it feels weird without the band there. Charge it briefly once a day at my desk, and I don't have to worry about power issues.The only thing this band desperately needs is a more durable screen. I have a couple small nicks on it now.Engadget Reader90January 23, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - EngadgetEngadget Reader100January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!the device is the best health & fitness wrist watch.We are expecting new microsoft watches with more stylish features soonEngadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!This device has far exceeded my exceptions, which I readily admit were somewhat low. I was interested in the band as a piece of tech and my wife really wanted one for workouts. Frankly I didn't think she'd like it due to it's size. As a man, the bulk doesn't bother me at all and it isn't even close to the size/weight of the Swiss made timepiece that I wear daily (Good luck getting me to take that off Apple). I would understand if a woman was less happy with the bulk, but I can report that my wife really likes hers and uses it regularly as it was intended: as a health band for workouts. I am not the health nut I ought to be, so my experience using it for it's primary purpose is limited. Basically I just use it for steps. I pay more attention to my activity as a result, so there is real benefit from using just this feature, though you can get that from a multitude of other products, most of which are less expensive. The big surprise has been the benefit of the "information radius" I get from my phone. There are many, many times in my day when my phone is near, but not in hand: while charging, when my kids grab it to play a game, when I walk down the hall to speak to a colleague, in my pocket, driving, etc. The subtle alert vibration is an unobtrusive cue to incoming texts, phone calls, e-mails whatever. That has saved me from missing calls and meetings as well as from wasting time tracking my phone down for something unimportant. The customizable responses that can be initiated from the Band are also surprisingly helpful. Battery life is as advertised: 2 days. This is adequate unless you want to use the Band for sleep tracking on a daily basis, then you essentially have no time to charge it. As a consequence, I've given up on the sleep tracking as the band is most useful in it's daytime activities.Engadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!I go through a lot of fitness bands and devices. The MS Band is the first fitness device to have everything I need in one device. I've tested the Band with other devices and it is on par with the more expensive Garmins. Since the heart rate monitor is built into the Band, I LOVE not having to wear a chest strap. I take the Band to the gym everyday and it is pretty durable.There are only two drawbacks that I have run in to. One, I can't wear it swimming. I do like the lap counter on my Garmin. Two, it would be nice if the battery would last two days, instead of one.Engadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!What I find missing is a web interface to review and download the data for my own analysis. I am disappointed that alerts will pile up on the Band and not be cleared when they are read/cleared on other devices such as my phone. I'll get a bunch of e-mails and texts, read them on my phone, but hours later they are still showing up on my Band as new. I am also disappointed that the display is not like those on the Nokia Lumia devices that can be operated while wearing gloves that do not have the special touch patches. I should not have to alter my wardrobe to suit a piece of electronics. I have found the weather alerts do not work well with Cortana. When I check my phone to see what the alert is all I see is the weather forecast. Overall: Promising provided Microsoft doesn't loose focus as it typically does after launching something new (Zune, InfoPath, Windows 8, Xbox).Engadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!I have no problem wearing it all day. It now feels strange to not wear it. I type all day with no problems. As a runners tool, it is well worth the money. It is a great training and run-day tool. The notifications are good too (cant live without them now). I rarely take my phone out of my pocket now. I think that battery life is really a non-issue. I can wear it 2 days, without a charge, but really I charge it every day while I'm in the shower. Not once have I worried about running out of juice.Overall, I love the device and will end up buying my wife one.Engadget Reader100January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!This device is exactly what I wanted in a smart watch. Has all the app notifications, caller ID, SMS and email preview, the list goes on. Never leave without it.Engadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - EngadgetEngadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!DURABILITYBuild quality is great, but screen protector is recommended to avoid scratches.PORTABILITYOnce you get used to it, you won't feel its existence. It sure does feel comfortable to wear.EASE OF USEThe simplicity and friendliness of the UI is a bless. You use it by "not using" it, because the interaction effort is minimized.DESIGN AND FORM FACTORIt IS bulky looking, but that's not a bad thing. When people start noticing the cool black gadget on your wrist a lot, you feel geeky in a good way.Engadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Although this device is not perfection it is on the right track. One of the main things I noticed about it is that it is the only band I have owned so far that has all the features I want that works well with android, iPhone, and yes, windows phone. Thebdeaign itself is on the right track, although I would like to see maybe a curved screen on the next device. As far as the portability and feel goes, yes this band feels a bit bulky at first and it won't fit under tight hoodie sleeves, but once you wear it for about a day you will forget it is there. Since there are three sizes as well you can also make sure that you get on that fits you just right. It is easy to use and the design fits perfect for the device. Overall this device is a great fitness tracker/smart band to own. Of you buy one, you will NOT regret it.Engadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!I keep finding new things I can do with my Band. I wouldn't call it a fitness tracker, it's more of an activity assistant. Reminds me of appointments, takes notes and makes meetings with Cortana, helps feed my coffee addiction, etc. The sleep tracker is amazing, even though you have to tell it when you are ready to go to sleep. It has given me a lot of insight into my sleep that I never had before. Now on those days where I feel like I was run over by a truck in my sleep, I can have a look at my sleep data and I am able to understand why I feel like I'm dragging.People who feel that it should be worn as a watch, just need to get past that. If the screen was on the outside of the wrist, it would have to be narrow and tall, which would make reading anything on the screen impossible as everything would wrap. If they made the screen wider, then people would complain about it being big and bulky.Engadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - EngadgetEngadget Reader90January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!Of all the fitness bands that I have tried eg. the Fit Bit and the Jawbone 24 I believe the MS Band has a much better user interface and a fantastic app. Having said that the Fit Bit and the 24 are more comfortable and you do become accustomed to having them on your person much quicker. But I would definitely trade a lil less comfort for a better UI and more sensors.Engadget Reader100January 22, 2015Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!A gadget unicorn - EngadgetEngadget Reader80November 20, 2014Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws. - EngadgetEngadget Reader80November 12, 2014Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws. - EngadgetEngadget Reader90November 12, 2014Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - EngadgetEngadget Reader90November 10, 2014Feedback submitted!Unable to submit feedback!The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
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