Microsoft Band Launches Today For $199, Works With iOS and Android

Microsoft Band Launches Today For $199, Works With iOS and Android

Today, Microsoft unveiled its first official entry into the wearable space. The Microsoft Band is a bluetooth fitness band that is not designed to replace your watch.

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The device is packed with sensors, including an optical heart rate sensor, 3-axis accelerometer, gyroscope, GPS, skin temperature sensor, ambient light and UV light sensor, and a microphone that can be used with Cortana on Windows Phone.

The most interesting feature of the device is its ability to pair it with any device running Windows Phone 8.1, iOS 7.1 or later, or Android 4.3 or later. The device you are pairing it with must have Bluetooth LE.

The device contains a 1.4-inch touchscreen with a 320 x 106 resolution and twin 100mAh batteries that Microsoft is claiming will give you 48 hours of "normal" use. The Microsoft Band charges using a magnetically attached USB charger and takes roughly 1.5 hours to fully charge. The new wearable device from Microsoft comes in three different sizes, so it should fit on most wrist.

On top of all the health features, Microsoft Band will also show you notifications from your smartphone including SMS and voice calls.

The company also announced Microsoft Health, a series of smartphone apps for Android, iOS, and Windows Phone backed by a cloud service. The apps will track your daily health, including steps taken, calories consumed, and tell you how much you slept. However, the company aims to use that data to provide all sorts of insights like how much recovery time you need after a workout and what kind of workout is best for you. The more data you give the cloud service, the more insights you will get.

The Microsoft Band is available starting today, October 30, in the U.S. only for $199. The company has not announced if and when the device will be expanding to other countries around the world.

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