Microsoft today announced huge updates for the Microsoft Band and Microsoft Health apps along with the first release of an SDK for third-party developers and a web dashboard, too.

The updates announced today are in response to user feedback and besides the web interface includes support for biking, new ways to scan and respond to notifications and integration with Microsoft HealthVault and MapMyFitness. There are also 5 new guided workouts to choose from.

"For the last three months, we've monitored feedback carefully from customers, partners and media. While the response has been overwhelmingly positive, we are continuing to listen to our customers and make improvements based on their feedback," said Matt Barlow, General Manager of New Devices Marketing. "This feedback is at the heart of the decisions we make, and today we're pleased to take our first steps in launching new features and functionality for Microsoft Band and Microsoft Health that address what we're hearing."

The update was released today and will roll out in the coming days to Windows Phone, iOS and Android users. We'll be back with more as and when our own Bands get the updates.

For more check out the full press release below.

Today, Microsoft introduces a comprehensive update to Microsoft Health and Microsoft Band that will further empower users to live healthier and be more productive. Today's updates are in response to user feedback on the types of features they want, and include a web dashboard, biking functionality, new ways to scan and respond to incoming notifications, and integration with Microsoft HealthVault and MapMyFitness. Also launching today is the Microsoft Band SDK Developer Preview for third party developers.

When Microsoft Health and Microsoft Band launched in 2014, we promised to build the experience jointly with customers and partners. We also said we would continuously improve the experience based on their feedback. Today we are demonstrating that commitment by releasing the first in a series of updates that will directly address what users have asked for: offering deeper insights, more features and greater integration.

  • Insights: Users want the ability to view their data in new and unique ways, to develop insights that help them achieve their goals. Today, we are launching the Microsoft Health web dashboard—allowing users to slice and dice their data in new ways, including new observations, extended data views and more detailed charts that complement what is already available via the mobile app.
  • Features: A popular area of feedback was the request for additional features or functionality. Today's update includes a whole suite of fitness and productivity features and functionality, including a robust biking offering. New ways to view and respond to notifications more efficiently are also being launched.
  • Integration: Consumers want to find ways of marrying data from their favorite applications, services and devices to develop insights based on a holistic view of their fitness and work habits. Today's update includes integration with MapMyFitness and Microsoft HealthVault.

"For the last three months, we've monitored feedback carefully from customers, partners and media. While the response has been overwhelmingly positive, we are continuing to listen to our customers and make improvements based on their feedback," said Matt Barlow, General Manager of New Devices Marketing. "This feedback is at the heart of the decisions we make, and today we're pleased to take our first steps in launching new features and functionality for Microsoft Band and Microsoft Health that address what we're hearing."

Along with these new features, the Microsoft Band SDK Developer Preview is being introduced today. This will allow third party developers to start building innovative new apps and creative new experiences for Microsoft Band. Developers can learn more at http://developer.microsoftband.com.

A complete list of today's new features is outlined below. The update was released today and will roll out over the next few days to all Windows Phone, Android and iOS users.

Insights

  • Microsoft Health Web Dashboard: The Microsoft Health web dashboard provides users insights, unique to them. The more users use their Microsoft Band, the more valuable these insights will become. The web dashboard is accessible via any web browser, providing a powerful complement to the Microsoft Health mobile app, which helps users track progress to their fitness goals. Users can access their personal Microsoft Health web dashboard at: https://dashboard.microsofthealth.com.

Features

Bike Tile: The Bike Tile on users' Microsoft Band lets them track their rides both indoors and outdoors, on the road or trail. Features include:

  • Heart Rate Monitor: When the Bike tile is active, the heart rate monitor is optimized specifically for biking activities.
  • Elevation Tracking: Track elevation and elevation gain, distance and duration and calorie burn– viewable in the Microsoft Health app.
  • GPS: Users can activate GPS on their Band to map their ride in the mobile app and share it with their friends via email.
  • Speed Analysis: Track your current and average speeds both on the band and in the mobile app, and review your custom splits to relive those longer bike rides.
  • Recovery: From the mobile app, users can see an estimate for how long it will take their body to recover from the ride.
  • Web Dashboard: Biking functionality is supported by the Microsoft Health mobile app at launch. Integration with the Microsoft Health web dashboard is coming soon.
  • Guided Workouts: Five new indoor biking workouts have been added to the Guided Workouts portfolio, including: Indoor Bike Tabata Sprints, Indoor Bike Hour of Sweat, Indoor Bike Total Body, Indoor Bike Pyramid, and Indoor Bike Intervals.
  • Quick Read: Quick Read provides another option to scan incoming texts, emails and other notifications. When enabled, notifications are displayed in a large font size and in rapid succession of words enabling users to read messages while in motion and without the need to scroll.
  • Virtual Keyboard & Voice Replies for Windows Phone 8.1 Users: Windows Phone 8.1 users can craft replies to text messages in two ways. Users can reply to text messages using the virtual keyboard with minimal errors with the help of Microsoft's World Flow technology, which predicts commonly used words and phrases. They can also dictate responses with voice, powered by Cortana.

Integration

  • Microsoft HealthVault: Users can create a complete picture of their health, with them at the center. Microsoft HealthVault lets users organize their health information in one place, and helps them gather, store, use, and share information and records with their healthcare providers. Now with Microsoft HealthVault integration, a user's Microsoft Health data is automatically uploaded to their HealthVault account, including their workout and sleep data. To link a Microsoft HealthVault account to Microsoft Health data, simply go to "Connected Apps" in the menu of the Microsoft Health app.
  • MapMyFitness: Starting today, users can sync to their MapMyFitness account. To link a MapMyFitness account to Microsoft Health data, simply go to "Connected Apps" in the menu of the Microsoft Health app.

The Microsoft Band is available now in Microsoft stores across the U.S. For more information, visit Microsoft Band and Microsoft Health online.