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Microsoft has revealed features that have been added to the new Microsoft Band, including music controls, activity reminders, and an improved Exercise Tile.The new music controls mean that users can put away their phones and turn directly to the Band to pause, play, skip forward and back, and adjust volume.
Microsoft Band 2 fitness tracker that was launched in October this year has started receiving an update that brings new features. The features, Microsoft claims, are based on the feedback it has received from customers. Just to clear, the update is only for the Band 2 and not the original Microsoft Band.
The latest Microsoft Band update fetches ‘all-new’ music controls, which now let you control pause, play, skip forward or back an audio file on the smartphone. The band not only gives the ability to control the audio volume but also shows the song title on the display. The feature works with any music app on the smartphone.
The update additionally will now remind users to get up and move when it notices them staying still for too long. This functionality is already present in Apple Watch.
“You choose the time intervals and the days you want to be reminded. You can also set a period of time when you don’t want to receive reminders, like when you’re sleeping or driving,” the Microsoft Devices Team said via a blog post.
The Microsoft Band update makes it easier to track the duration, calorie burn, and heart rate for a particular exercise while using the Exercise Tile. The summaries and observations will be grouped by exercise type in the Microsoft Health app or Web Dashboard. A ‘What’s New’ tile has also been introduced in the update that simply lets you know about the new features for the Microsoft Band. It will appear on the band once the updates are available.
Microsoft launched its Band 2 alongside the Microsoft Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL, as well as the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book in October. The device comes with Cortana integration and can preview emails, get the calendar and call alerts, receive text messages, and see social updates, apart from the reply to text messages with quick responses, or dictate responses using Cortana. It costs $249 (approximately Rs. 16,300).
With the activity notifications, users can set the time intervals and the days they want to receive reminders or set periods of time when no reminders will be sent, such as while sleeping or driving.
The Exercise Tile now lets users choose from popular options such as yoga or weightlifting when tracking their exercises, and summaries and observations from Microsoft Health or the Web Dashboard are now grouped by exercise type.