Microsoft ‘Band 2’ Blends GPS With Smartwatch

With devoted well being utility and apps for every smartphone utility, the Microsoft Band 2 is a easy-to-exercise, correct exercise tracker that’s searching to assassinate waves in the crowded well being compare market.

microsoft band 2

The Microsoft Band 2 is something of a hybrid product. Equivalent to GPS watches like the Suunto Ambit3, it for sure works on my own without being connected to a smartphone. Nonetheless it has a magnificent shorter battery life and mediocre point to when put next with the high-powered GPS watches in the marketplace, which can scurry for a month or more in compare mode.

On the replacement hand, it has a deep feature plan when compared with many “exercise tracker” bands including: GPS, elevation, coronary heart price, scurry, time, high-tail, and UV exposure to name just a few. In all there are eleven sensors in the Band (look total checklist beneath) which is greater than most. From all this, the actual person can watch accurate-time data on the Band’s digital point to.

At $250, it hits a tag more inexpensive than most GPS watches whereas including a constructed-in optical coronary heart price sensor that many such watches lack. Nonetheless with funds online outlets knocking mid-level GPS watches beneath $300, deciding on this Band over a devoted well being compare will possible be a tough promote.

Read the overview beneath to support deem if the Microsoft Band 2 is for you or whereas that you may maybe additionally aloof make the leap into a fleshy-blown GPS compare.

Microsoft Band 2 Overview

The Band 2 is light, yet semi-full, with a for sure sure 320×128 pixel point to, forty eight-hour battery life, and total price time of 1.5 hours. The battery life is less when the GPS is susceptible, nonetheless the identical goes for GPS watches, which hold an realistic battery lifetime of 50-a hundred hours when monitoring is susceptible.

A large distinction between the Band 2 and GPS watches is that watches work for a month or more between charges when not utilizing GPS. The Band 2 lasts about forty eight hours between charges even when no GPS features are being susceptible.

microsoft-well being-band-on-arm

Microsoft touts the Band as a well being tracker with smartwatch capabilities. I’d agree. It has appropriate about any sensor you’d prefer in a well being tracker and the submit-exercise statistics are easy to digest in the Microsoft Health app. Its smartwatch capabilities consist of receiving emails, texts, calls, social media notifications, the climate, and more thru a low vitality Bluetooth 4.Zero whereas you happen to’re shut to your phone.

Checking out The Band 2

The GPS, barometer, and coronary heart price note are correct. One day of a dreary evening alleycat bike scurry in downtown Minneapolis, I plan the Band to trace my jog as I dashed to and from a bunch of checkpoints, wearing a chest-strap coronary heart price note to compare the outcomes.

No subject my preliminary doubts, the coronary heart price note constructed into the Band 2 became on-point, comparing precisely to my chest strap. Once residence, I spread out the app and became ready to mark my route right thru city and point out to my wife the put I’d spent too powerful time hunting for a checkpoint.

microsoft well being app

On the replacement hand, right thru an orienteering scurry, plan right thru a forested regional park, the Band for sure let me down. After ending the mostly off-inch course in 50 or so minutes, I chanced on that the GPS signal became misplaced right thru the scurry and as a result of this fact became unable to notice at my route and splits. It gave the influence like the dense wooded enviornment and off-inch navigation were pushing the bounds of the interior GPS, that are constructed primarily for more on-grid operating/biking routes.

On a bunch of times I susceptible the sleep tracker, which monitors your sleep and experiences on resting HR, duration of restful vs. light sleep, overall effectivity, and more. A pair of mornings I susceptible the contemporary “Tidy Awe,” which gently buzzed me unsleeping at my “optimal wakeup time.” Each parts performed well and offered spirited and insightful outcomes thru the Health app.

microsoft band coronary heart price note
Built-In Optical Heart Price Sensor

Execs Vs. Cons

After a month-long take a look at, I’ve developed an affinity for the Band 2 and a checklist of pros and cons:


  • Easy to exercise, seamless compatibility with impressive Microsoft Health app
  • Correct sensors (GPS, coronary heart price, time, splits, steps, barometer, etc.)
  • Sleep monitoring and Tidy Awe
  • Participation in “guided exercises” designed by well being pros
  • Tracking stats when energy coaching
  • Syncing with other well being apps such as MapMyFitness, Strava, Runkeeper
  • Explain reminders to aid tantalizing
  • Asking Cortana (Microsoft’s Siri) easy questions


  • Immediate battery life renders sleep tracker mostly unused, as most of us price at evening
  • Not substantial contented, scrapes laptop pc when typing
  • Not waterproof, no swimming or showering with it
  • Portray can even be a minute tough to read mid-exercise
  • No navigation or compass (on hand on GPS watches)

The Final Resolution-Maker

Overall, the dedication to pass with the Band 2 or a more devoted (and more dear) well being compare in the extinguish comes all of the type down to whether or not you’re drawn to smartwatch parts like push notifications. If you happen to are, then catch your fingers on the Band 2 and catch pleasure from its optimistic well being monitoring, impressive Health app, and viewing texts on your wrist.

If you happen to determine on out GPS compare parts like navigation, an altimeter and a priceless compass, coast forward and exhaust the additional bucks to catch a compare constructed to trace your exercise and aid in navigation. Its battery life may maybe maybe also aloof be longer and its exercise sensors more extremely efficient.


  • Mark: $250
  • Band Subject subject: Thermal plastic elastomer silicone vulcanate (TPSiV)
  • Portray Dimension: 32mm x 12.8mm
  • Battery Style: Li-Polymer
  • Temp. Ranges: 14°F to 104° F
  • Guarantee: 1 year small
  • Sensors: Optical coronary heart price sensor; 3-axis accelerometer/gyro; Gyrometer; GPS; Ambient light sensor; Pores and skin temperature sensor; UV sensor; Captive sensor; Galvanic pores and skin response; Microphone; Barometer
  • Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.Zero

Product Page / Rob Now

The submit Microsoft ‘Band 2’ Blends GPS With Smartwatch seemed first on GearJunkie.

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