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Microsoft Band 3 review: The best wearable Microsoft never released

We review the canceled Microsoft Band 3. And it's pretty great ... or it would have been.

The Microsoft Band 2 was an improvement in every way over the original Microsoft Band wearable. It featured a brand new design, a higher-resolution AMOLED display, a more comfortable fit on the wrist, and new features that made it a better fitness wearable. The Microsoft Band 2 wasn't perfect, however, and I was hopeful that with the next release of the Band, Microsoft would have nailed it.

So when news broke that Microsoft was shelving its Band devices, I was heartbroken. The Band 2 was a great wearable, almost perfect, in fact, but it needed a few more additions before I could consider it the best wearable available at the time. Alas, that third Microsoft Band never came. But that doesn't mean Microsoft wasn't working on one.

Luckily, I managed to get my hands on a Microsoft Band 3 prototype. It's a minor improvement over the Band 2, but it's those improvements that make it the best version of the Microsoft Band. I've been using it for over a week now, and this is my review.

Microsoft Band 2 and Band 3 tech specs

Microsoft Band 2

Microsoft Band 2 (Image credit: Windows Central)
CategoryBand 2Band 3
Display Size12.8 mm x 32 mm12.8 mm x 32 mm
Display TypeCurved AMOLEDCurved AMOLED
Resolution320 x 128 pixels320 x 128 pixels
Battery48 hours (GPS may impact battery life)48 hours (GPS may impact battery life)
Average Charge TimeFull charge in less than 1.5 hoursFull charge in less than 1 hour.
SensorsOptical heart rate sensor
three-axis accelerometer
Ambient light sensor
Skin temperature sensor
UV sensor
Capacitive sensor
Galvanic skin response
Optical heart rate sensor
3-axis accelerometer
Ambient light sensor
Skin temperature sensor
UV sensor
Capacitive sensor
Galvanic skin response
ConnectivityBluetooth 4.0 LEBluetooth 4.0 LE

Microsoft Band 3: What's different?

Unlike the jump from the Band 1 to the Band 2, the Band 3 doesn't change much in regards to design. There are a few notable differences, however. For example, the clasp on the back of the device features a slightly different, slimmer design. In fact, the entire bulk at the back of the Band is slimmer, making for a much more comfortable fit on your wrist.

The Band 2 was already pretty slim on the wrist, but the Band 3 improves on that slightly. For example, I don't get the Band 3 caught on things as much as the Band 2. It fits around shirt cuffs comfortably, and it just sits snugger to your skin.

The two silver nubs that sit against your skin on the back of the device have changed from being circular dots to long prods. I can't really feel a difference between the two. The last notable change in design is with the Action Button, which is no longer coated in black.

The slimmer clasp also means the Band 3 features a new charger, which is more square. It connects well and charges the device fast. I can usually get from around 10 percent to 100 percent in under an hour, which is an improvement over the one and a half hours it took to charge the Band 2. There's also an additional (microphone?) hole at the top of the front of the band.

Now, while the design looks almost identical to the Band 2, Microsoft added one feature to the Band that many were asking for: waterproofing. The Band 2 was water-resistant, but the Band 3 is waterproof. There are two new sensors, too: electrocardiogram and RFID sensors.

Microsoft Band 3: New features

The addition of waterproofing and the new sensors mean Microsoft added three new notable features to the Band 3:

  • Swimming exercise tracking.
  • Enhanced well-being tracking.
  • RFID tag support.

The most interesting addition is the enhanced well-being tracking, which works in conjunction with the electrocardiogram sensor that tracks your blood pressure. From this, the Band can tell you your stress levels, temperature and more. This is all useful information.

The ability to track swimming is handy, and you can track things like pacing, laps, breaths per minute, time and heart rate. The RFID tag support doesn't appear to work on our prototype, likely because these devices were never finished.

Microsoft Band 3: Durability

The durability of the Microsoft Band line was never great. Many people suffered broken straps and devices that eventually just fell apart. This issue was not rectified with the Band 2 as many people reported having to return their Band 2 for a new one due to the band ripping or tearing. (I personally never suffered these issues with either the Band 1 or Band 2.)

So, is this rectified with the Band 3? It's hard to tell. Since this device was never released, we don't have any official word to go on. The material looks and feels the same as that in use on the Band 2. However, the curves in the rubber on the Band 3 are more sturdy and aren't as maneuverable as they are on the Band 2. I'm not sure if this improves durability.

Microsoft Band 3: Final thoughts

The Microsoft Band 3 would have been the best version of the Microsoft Band. This shouldn't come as much of a surprise, as usually, the latest version of a device is the best. What makes this story particularly sad is that for one, it was canceled, and two, the Band 2 was almost perfect.

The Band 3 added the few things its predecessor was missing. If Microsoft had just held out a little longer, the Band 3 would've shipped. Sure, it wasn't a major upgrade like the Band 1 to Band 2, but that's because it didn't need to be.

Would I have bought the Band 3? Yes. I'm not even that into fitness, but the addition of waterproofing and the slimmer design would've made upgrading from the Band 2 to the Band 3 worth it.


  • Slimmer.
  • Electrocardiogram sensors.
  • Waterproof!


  • Was never released.
  • Possible durability issues remain.
Zac Bowden
Zac Bowden

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows 10 on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

  • Damn it.... I really wish they released this. If the rubber didn't rip like Band 2 this would've been the perfect smart watch for me. That stress monitoring looks awesome. Sigh... hopefully they will revisit smartwatches with WinCore OS/IoT.
  • Yea.. I have band 2 and I really loved it until the strap broke 😕 smart alarm was one of my favorite features. Lots of wearables have sleep monitoring but it's proven difficult to find one with that feature
  • I 100% agree, I loved my Band 2 but the strap material was too fragile for the test of time. If they would've just changed the design to incorporate interchangeable straps and improve the functions and features, it's money! Microsoft is using the consumers as a test subject too much and doesn't invest in their products past two years (except Surface devices and XBox branded devices). Band 3 is just an example of the Window-shopping experience we get from MS lately. Look but you can't have...
  • Uggggghhhh!!! I wish MS would bring some of these products back under the Surface name... This is so frustrating!
  • I moved on after mine ripped, I just upgraded to Android in Oct. To the S8 and own a GearFit 2 which is the closest device to the band 2 I could find.
    It's vey close to the Band 2 but it Display's everything in Portrait Mode and not landscape like the band.
    I think the band was easier to read by flipping ur arm up to see the display, it felt more natural than the GearFit 2 does.
    I like the GearFit 2 because I can change the band, which I did instead of the black band it's now red, but that's the only feature
    that impresses me, the rest is fair. It looks like me Samsung copied the Band 2 in the the it works, but till no replacement, the Band 2 will always be my Fav Device in this category. RIP BABD 2😥😪😭😰
  • Why Microsoft, why...?
  • I told all of you that a Band 3 was made a year ago. And, here it is.
  • Dude we've all been known
  • I remember you saying that. Respect.
  • Salt meet wound.  As a recent convert to Android Wear, I still contantly miss basically everything about my band...  
  • I don't miss the comfort, or should I say lack of.  It was still a cool device at the time. I like the Samsung Gear S3 watches better than anything I've tried, but the lack of quality apps really deteriorates the experience.
  • How could we force Microsoft to let another OEM to make and sale band 3?
  • I think they sold the tech to Fitbit or somebody last year. I don't think we'll see another wearable like it.
  • That's what I'd heard as well but, apparently, the Band was a showcase device for the sensor package it contained anyway.
  • Casio. Unfortunately their smart wearables seem pretty pricey as it is 😒
  • I had Band1 which was falling apart When I switched to Band2 whose strap fell apart after a few months and was replaced and the replacement fell apart in the same way. By that time MS had bailed so I've been on Fitbits since and I'm currently using a Surge which is ugly and bulky but otherwise OK. I can't tell if it's more or less accurate but I miss the Band2 look and feel and its display. The only superior thing about the Surge is the supporting Android software. MS did its usual scandalous job of supporting its products and its loyal customers. Fitbit ain't great but MS set the bar so low it was easily surpassed. One thing I would like would be if the device would sense when I was walking more than a few steps and then prompt me to ask if I wanted to track a new hike. Sometimes I foul up the hike function and miss it. I was on-board for a Band3 and would climb back on if one appeared and was supported by MS. For real this time.
  • Force?  Become a majority shareholder?
  • Awww man.... this review makes me want to buy a band 3 but knowing that we can't as it's been cancelled makes it so much more worse. Waterproofing was my biggest gripe with the Band 2 hence why it was never really high on my list for as a must have purchase. If I'm buying a fitness band for £200+ It better do everything i need it to do and as fitness wearable not being able to swim with it never made it a priority purchase. When you go for a swim you just want to relax, focus on the laps and not think about if your expensive fitness band will be working after the swim. I am hoping Microsoft picks this up later with Andromeda as it's almost perfect, as pointed in the article the question about durability is what just holds it back. But since it's been cancelled we will never know.
  • Band 3 could have save many people's life. When used in innovative way through startup
  • Someone needs to write the story leading to dropping Band 3 so we know who to blame.
  • Satya, the buck stops with him on everything Microsoft.
  • Probably very simple, they weren't making money right now on it, so Nadella axed it. No vision and another example of selling off the company's future for short term profits. 
  • You mean like windows phone that just needed a year more to make profit (like fans said every year)?
  • I think the carriers with their exclusives here in the US had alot to do with windows phone failures.  It's no wonder windows phones did better overseas.  (Aside from Microsoft getting bored and rebooting the darned thing ever couple years...) 
  • Microsoft was responsible for the carrier exclusives not the carriers. Microsoft decided to make their last flagship phones AT&T exclusives.
  • Carriers decide what phones they carry, not Microsoft. The only way they could convince them was through exclusives. If it is a good product, the exclusive is successful and next year they have more leverage to get it in more stores. All the other manufacturers were able to do this through exclusives, even iPhone started as an AT&T exclusive. Why couldn't Microsoft?
  • No more like all the games on Xbox being cancelled because apparently it's too expensive to make games. Short term thinking. 
  • There are some market "losers" that you need to invest in anyway to develop a cohesive ecosystem.  Even if Windows Phone was losing, they should have plowed money into it to keep the platform which is a key part of the ecosystem.  Microsoft is now finding it hard to proliferate Cortana, Skype or anything that needs tight personal device integration. Howevever, I'm not sure the Band 3 was mission critical.  You could argue it is a part of the Health Vault and Insights. BUT... as a Band 1 and Band 2 lover, I would have bought the Band 3.  For me its biggest miss is lack of battery life.  No serious weekend athlete will accept its relatively short battery life when using GPS.  It also lacks ANT+
  • You nailed it in your first paragraph. Particularly in light of Nadella having been given so much latitude in his mid career growing Bing in the face of Google (and Yahoo). Arguably an even greater no win situation than Windows Phone/Mobile and devices like Band. By removing themselves from the market, Microsoft has lost easy, direct access to emerging use cases from the most active technology segment. Now they must infer and grow those use cases from the derived data.
  • Microsoft needs to reorganize the management team responsible for digital health. Hire someone with fresh vision.
  • More like they needed a CEO with more resolve.
  • I really liked my Band 2, but it broke. So did the replacement and so did my wife's and her replacement. I upgraded to the Samsung Gear S3 Frontier. This blows the Band 2 out of the water. There are few things I miss from the Band 2, but not enough to ever go back. It is the same with my old Windows Phone after upgrading to the Samsung Galaxy S8+. I was a die-hard Windows Phone fan, but Microsoft abandoned us on that too.
  • Except that I did not want to buy a Samsung phone and the built in GPS function sucked on all the Gear smart watches. Only the Band and Garmin watches had good built in GPS functions. I know, I tried the S3, S2, Fit 2, the Android Wear watches from Huewai. I even tried the Fit Bit Surge, which was the only Fitbit watch with a built in GPS and it also sucked. I am a runner and started using watches with the Forerunner 305 and that Surge looked like a piece of hard to read junk.
  • I definitely agree from a hardware perspective.  I love that rotating bezel and the Tizen OS does a lot of things right.  I just wish Samsung could get people to write apps for it including themself.  A SmartThings app would be great.  The store is 90% watch facese and 10% apps, most of which are poorly supported or don't work properly.
  • Funny that a SmartThings app isn't already available...
  • I loved my Band 2. I have a fitbit now, and still would rather have a Band. I did run into serious quality issues though, with the band of the Band tearing twice, like many others have reported.
  • I feel you. I had the Band and Band 2 and I had to replace both for durability issues. After my Band 2 broke completely, I gave up on wanting g anything else. However, the Fitbit Iconic came out and I wanted it. Overall, it is Fitbit'best offer for smart watches and fitness tracking combo. The battery life was great, but this was also my issue. I'm not sure if I was just unlucky with it or not, but it had battery issues that kept it from holding a charge, within the first week of owning it. Initially, I got nearly 6days straight on on charge and that was with everything on. I replaced it and everything was great for about a month. I enjoyed the new update that gave a plethora of watch faces to change to and the addition of apps. Unfortunately, I started having the issue once again. I'm just glad Best Buy has such a great exchange and return policy. It helped that I also had their insurance, too. After the taking the second one back, I decided to take the store credit and put it towards a Xbox One X. Lol I guess I will just wait for the Iconic 2. Not unless MS puts something out sometime this year.
  • Have you tried the Garmin Vivoactive 3?  It has all the features of the Iconic (sans onboard music) but adds ANT+ and heartbeat transmit and also looks great ... like a real watch.
  • I loved my Band 2, until the rubber completely tore itself apart about 6 months ago.  I would have easily shelled out $250 for this new one, if they could have made the rubber more durable.
  • Haha! Rating a device which never gets released!
    Meanwhile I watched a video on win central YouTube about Polaris!
    But it soon get removed. Lucky me;")
  • I think we may also see first version of cancelled surface phone with windows mobile 10 in future
  • My Band 2 would no longer charge so I replaced it with a Garmin Vivoactive 3, my Girlfriend's Band 2 had the tearing issue and she replaced hers with the Garmin Vivosmart HR+. We would've bought Band 3 in a heartbeat over what we ended up having to buy.
  • Please don't sale me, but send me this prototype Band 3....
    Thank You
  • I would buy two of these now. Polaris would be useful on a device of this form factor the store apps for band would have been fun. Good way to show the scalability of UWP. But since phones and wearables are dead to Microsoft we will never see what it can really do.
  • Maybe it is dead because Windows/UWP wasn't capable. That is the rumor at least.
  • I don't like to agree with bleached :-), but that's what I had heard too. Or, similarly, that it didn't fit with their overarching strategy of all hardware running Windows 10.
  • @GraniteStateColin. The Microsoft band ran a firmware not even a subset of windows. Hence the cancellation, plus there are/were other factors at play.
  • LOOOOOOVED my band 2. It was everything I wanted in a wearable. The fitbit blaze I have now (bought after I returned my band 2 for a 2nd time due to the rubber splitting) is fine, but not nearly as good as my band 2. Despite MS burning consumers by dropping this product, I'd still buy one if they brought it back.  
  • Looks like it was using the same plastics/material/molding for the strap as the Band2 used, which as we all know was going to tear on you eventually. Not a matter of if, but when. So likely after seeing all the warranty replacements they had to do for the B2, they decided to scrap the B3. I still wear my B2 every day, held together with electrical tape. I have another new-in-box sitting in my closet when this one completely gives out. It's a shame. I really wanted a new iteration.
  • Use 3/4" heat shrink tubing. Looks decent and it's strong/water resistant. Did it to mine and it's still going strong 😊
  • I did that too, and mine's still going strong. The tubing seems more durable than the strap...🙂 
  • Am I right in recalling that Panos or someone wore a "white" version of this Band 3 on stage somewhere?
  • I thought it was during a tour of their dev lab that it was spotted.
  • How do you get your hands on devices like this?
  • It's amazing what you find rummaging around in the bins at Microsoft HQ
  • It's no Apple watch...
  • Is that good or bad.  I would've been happy with one of these.
  • You're right! Should've given it 5/5
  • No, The Band 3 isn't that ugly.
  • It is way uglier, the Band looks terrible. Embarrassing how bad that monsterosity looks on someone's arm. It is way too thick for how small the screen is. If it was double the width, then the thickness wouldn't look so weird. A fitness wearable should be small and thin.
  • There are currently zero thin and small wearables.
  • It's thinner than an Apple watch. I loved my band 2.
  • God Microsoft why do you make my blood boil so much at the moment,  Please someone tell someone who is listening to stop cancelling products that are superiour to anything currently on the market.  Now I have to put up with a chunky fitbit, which has half the functions that the Band 2 had, and looks 10th as good.   I also have to put up with Spotify, that has some nice little feature that I will never use, but isnt as good as groove.  Dont sell me the Xbox X, and then stop making the adaptors to plug my Kinect into it... Please bring out a new moblie before my lumia 930 dies as I really dont want any of the Apple or Android Rubbish.....   Satya, if you dont want to sell people product then go now... Quantum computer might be the future, but thats what it is the future.  There is no point in making the investment in it now, if your not going to have a company to see anything actually come of it.
  • Nailed it Dave. Nadella seems to be keeping a very alert eye for anything that might make MS some credibility with consumers and then kills it. The worst CEO, except for Donny Trump, of tbe last 30 years.  
  • I would have bought it in a heartbeat.  Such a shame it was never released, I'm not overly impressed with what I ended up settling with (Apple Watch)
  • Next review will be a Courier that they found in a dumpster out back at Microsoft :D  
  • Bummer, my Band 1 is still going strong after 3 years (exercise, bike and sleep with it on and it's still doing great) but was hoping to replace it with the Band 3. Still neat to see what could have been, thanks for the write-up.
  • Still rocking my Band 2. Before the band tore (on my 4th replacement) I used 3/4" heat shrink tubing on the wrist bands. Since then, no tears, and it's still my favorite wearable to date.
  • Let's say, I understand that Band 3 would be better than Band 2, but would it be better than Fitbit Blaze or other current mainstream wearable? I would say the only advantage I can feel is that Band works better with WP than other devices, but WP is already dead. Therefore, I don't really see why Band 3 could be a success. If Band 3 is a revolution, I could feel really bad of its cancellation. But if it's just a small upgrade, thanks.
  • @MullenWP - I see what you're saying.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but till this day there is still nothing in the market with as many sensors as the Band 2/3.
  • Seems to similar to Band 2. Wouldn't have sold well anyway. Too half assed attempt. Hence it was axed. They tried to sell the sensor tech, maybe they already did.
  • Funny how a "half assed" product can still do much more than my current Samsung Fit 2 Pro.
  • If they make another wearable, it should be friendly to Windows 10 IoT/Core whatever the flavor of Windows that can run on any device.  I'm going to fall into the minority here and say it's a good thing the device was cancelled. It wouldn't have made many converts from FitBit or Garmin, and was too tied to services that were also on the chopping block (e.g., Groove). 
  • Guys, do not despair. Go to any shop and find new smart watch from Samsung. It looks almost exactly like Band 2/3. It has been even improved a bit, you can read and see things vertically, so you do not need to twist your hand to check time.  Question is, why it is worth for Samsung to put on the market another version of smart watch and it wasn't worth doing it by Microsoft? Posted by a very disappointed user of amazing Band 2!
  • Would have loved this.  Marketing department is terrible at Microsoft.  Almost non-existent.
  • I'd have been in line to buy this on day 1. I loved my Band and Band 2 and this would have had exactly the feature set I want. Sadly nobody makes an equivalent.
  • RFID could have been a game-changer, given a good partnership. being able to gain access to a secure facility from your Band, or purchasing items from an RFID vending machine. That would have been dope. I wish I wouldn't have traded my 2 for store credit but the Microsoft Store people told me the 3 was in progress for release (this was a couple months before that news would change).
  • Shut up and take my money!  Damnit nevermind.
  • Yes Microsoft, you screwed the pooch again.
  • I would have stayed with Band 2. I had a total of 3 all of which eventually failed. Instead of going to a fourth one I went with a Charge 2 which made me miss the band 2 immensely. I then went the route of Gear Fit 2, gear fit 2 pro, and now an S3 Classic. I don't know if would go back to the Band at this point. I would have stayed there if they didn't continually break.
  • Does Bluetooth actually work properly on the Band 3 with Windows 10 unlike the band 2 which lost half of it's features with the new os?
  • Still using my Band 2. And every feature I know of works fine. There was only a short period of time that it lost full functionality, but that must have been patched prior to its discontinuance, because I never drop a Bluetooth connection anymore, Cortana/keyboard are flawless, and battery life is the standard Band 2 of roughly 2 days. Only thing that doesn't seem to work anymore is Facebook push notifications... But who gives a crap about that anyway nowadays?
  • Nice, when I had one Cortana and keyboard never worked, so I eventually have to and got the Charge 2.
  • Microsoft on about 50% of their offierings, creates a good product and then orphans it. This makes me wary of MS products. I had a Band 2, it did have issues. It died and was replaced and still works. I replaced it with a used Fossil (wanted to see what it was like without spending $300+ dollars. Hate FitBits (Talk about reliability issues and a lousy charging process) and I won't go into Apple Watch.  
  • I moved on. The Band 2 was a utter dissapointment.  I went through 3 of them with the tears in the bands from minor wear.  So many people had issues that Band replacements must have cost MS a pretty penny with that band design (even after they supposedly made adjustments to the thickness of hte Bands band the problems persisted).  In fact, my third Band 2 was hardly ever used since it replaced my second Band 2 and had been sitting on a shelf for almost 6 months  but, it still has cracks from the just sitting there. Possibly from exposure just to the daily elements (light, local LA pollution). The fairly large cracks (the usual suspects near the top of the band near the display) were definately not there after the single month of use I had with it before my great Garmin arrived and replaced it. Three Band 2's and three Band failures for me. If this Band 3 was made of the same material the very same design failure, I am sure, would have happened to many people as it happened to so many with the Band 2.
  • I purchased a band 1 and 2 and the only gripe i had with it was the battery life. As a person who does long days cycling i found  2 to 3 hr battery life using gps unacceptable. I returned mine and got a refund. I then purchased a Garmin and then another Garmin. I now use a Fenix 5x which gives me approx 15hr battery life using gps and glonass.It all depends on what you are using a smart watch for, mine is purely for sport.
  • I have both, Band 1 and 2, and loved them. I was really sad when their straps broken, after almost 6 months of use. I wore them all the time, except for bath, of course. I live in a country where the Bands were not commercialized, and therefore could not have those replaced during the warranty period. But I would surely buy this third iteration, if it were made available. This was a fantastic device, no doubt on that. I had since moved to a Samsung Gear S2 and a Android phone (as I also have a Lumia 1520 phone...), but have to say that the S2 is not really a match for the band. It lacks many of the features (although has several others) and the sensors does not seems as accurate as the Band's 2 ones. Anyway, hope MS come back with those kind of devices one day, improved, as some peer have said in the other comment.
  • It sounds like it was a pretty cool wearable. That sucks that Microsoft decided not to finish it off.
  • I had a great idea for a band on this that would have been a little more flexible and lasted for a lot longer but probably no one would have liked the way a braided flat band would have looked... Oh well
  • Unreleased product with big potencial. Not to mention it can be sold separately from any Microsoft product. But if they got surface one in mind I will wait. Besides sport tracking it could go well sensing of user's well being while working / playing game. And whole lot products they could make cool and useful to windows users.
  • One of my favorite product lines 😥 I hope they revive this category with something great soon. Better battery, Win 10 powered, and more durable. I switched to Fitbit and have never been as happy.
  • I still miss my Band 2 despite switching to Fitbit when it self destructed. I'm hoping once "One Core" is done they start re exploring wearable form factors.
  • I loved the Band 2 but the actual  "band" wasn't sturdy enough. I took good care of mine but had it replaced less than a year after purchase and the 2nd one the band is tearing again, in short order. If they could have figured out how to make the band more durable it would be tremendous. This version would have been perfect for me (assuming the durability of the band was addressed). The biggest drawback aside from that mentioned before was the lack of water proofing and inability to swim with it. I recently went with the GARMIN VIVOACTIVE HR and find it to be extremely underwhelming and (inaccurate on swims)... I would have been much more happy with the Band 3.  Infact my good friend was very taken with my Band but I told him since it's been discontinued it's not worth purchasing. That's too bad, this Band 3, would have been just the thing for me.
  • Band 2 is BEST!
  • This would make for an excellent giveaway from Windows Central :D
  • I had 1&2 would have gotten 3 too. Never had quality issues with band 1. My band 2 strap tore after a long while. I really miss it. No worries though, MS isn't turning their back on us.
  • I really liked my Band 2   - but found they had charging issues.  I had to replace 2 of them because of this.  Nevertheless I would have jumped on the Band 3 if it had become available.  Instead now I have a Samsung Gear 3.  It's cool that I can answer my phone with it, but it's large and more complicated with little else that adds value.  Much prefer the simplicity of the Band.  I'm really trying to stay with Microsoft for my smart things, but have resorted to Android stuff instead - including my Galaxy Note8 smart phone.  Overall, I'm under-whelmed by Android.  I was expecting a richer experience, but instead found a lack of consistency  - lots of apps, but at the sacrifice of clutter and complexity.   I found my smart device experiences were simpler, cleaner and more effective with Microsoft devices (Band and 950xl),  Beats me why MS couldn't get the market share based on my experiences. (Yes, I ran with an iphone for a while too, but found it too locked down.  IMHO MS hit the sweet spot between Android and Apple)
  • I was fine with the Band 1, and very pleased with Band 2.  I looked forward to Band 3, but alas, another fine product suddenly disappeared.   I tried many different fitness devices but the Band always excelled for my needs.  When it disappeared, I did replace it with a Fitbit Blaze, but that had too many limits.  The Fitbit Flex 2 was OK, but notifications were limited.  I finally settled on an Apple Watch 2.  The fitness measures are not as good as the Band, but the notifications are decent. I've moved on, but if Microsoft suddenly ressurects this product, I would pick one up.  I doubt that will occur, but then I remember the days when Dick Tracy wore a "wrist radio" and we thought that was fantasy beyond anything possible.  
  • This article seems like click bait. Why post a review of a dead product this far out? The click bait is working, because even I'm not commenting.... The irony of the Microsoft Band is that the band on it was its worst feature. Mine (like many people's) broke and was then blamed on "user error".
  • Mr Bowden I think Microsoft should hire you and put you in a position similar to that of Phil Spencer and I think you should consider starting your own website similar to this one nd I wish I was in a position to help you do that, I would invest a great deal of money to do so if I could
  • Mr Bowden I think Microsoft should hire you and put you in a position similar to that of Phil Spencer and I think you should consider starting your own website similar to this one nd I wish I was in a position to help you do that, I would invest a great deal of m . Actually, even though I don't have a lot of money to invest in such a project I might be able to organize at least something and I'm actually very serious about this so if you are even the slightest bit interested about discussing this please don't hesitate to contact me. I'm sure you will understand I'm not going to post my contact details here but my details are on record as part of my subscription to this site so you are probably aable to find a way to contact me if you try. I'm afraid that there might be some typos in this message which make it seem less credible but there's a reason for that. I will of course explain if I have the opportunity and I'm sure you will understand but at least I think the core of my message is clear enough regardless of typos. Keep up the good work!
  • I love it. I was so sad about my bands durability and waterproofing; this would have been perfect!!
  • I would've bought this in a heart beat.  I tried some fitbit and garmin watches after my Band 2 died but those all sucked in comparison.  To this day I have no smart watch because I can't find anything good.
  • I would have gotten it as well. Miss my band 2.
  • Is there any point reminiscing, it is what is nothing more nothing less.
  • I would have loved it.
  • I loved the Band 2. My wife has an Apple watch and I always thought the Band 2 better. If they could have fixed the problem with band itself breaking I would be Wareing it today. If the battery would have lasted.
  • :( I was so sad when they killed it. Such a beautiful device. People stop me to ask what it is and how much it costs
  • Would love to see Fitbit integrate some of these features in their Charge 3, especially the waterproofing for swimming and the Electrocardiogram and skin temperature sensors. That combined with the good build quality of the fitbit would make an epic fitness device, no need for battery draining stuff like color screens or gps as long as all the health sensors are there.  
  • I still use Band 2 today, 3rd one and the strap is cracking so I have some Sugru on it.  Dreading moving on to something else.
  • Ditch the sugru and use 3/4" heat shrink tubing. It looks like the original band when applied properly and adds so much extra strength. It will bond right over any tears and seal them water tight. Look it up for photos/videos.
  • I would have bought one... MS they have the capability to make great stuff... They lack the will to back it  
  • Microsoft doesn't have to make a band 3. What they should do is LEAN INTO their partnership with fitbit and share the technology and patents that they developed for the band 2 & 3 and help develope the Ionic 2. Imagine the current Ionic with uv sensor, ekg sensors. If microsoft made it so Xamarin could be used to make apps for the ionic. If microsof tbrought Cortana and Skype to the ionic. I LOVED my microsoft Band 1 & 2. I lost 100 lbs because of them. But microsoft was half hearted in their efforts in promoting the bands and building out the experience. Notice they announced it in the dead of night. But if they treat the Ionic the same way they treat the Galaxy phones, maybe we could have a band 3 with the best Fitbit has to offer. 
  • My take is that this is yet another step on the road to MS being irrelevant and going the way of the dodo bird ... extinction. They dump stuff, or it seems that Nadella dumps anything that looks like it might, with luck gain traction. MS ignores anywhere outside the US and this is extraordinary given that the US has 300m people from a world population of around 6billion and the Chineseand European economies are set to overtake the US very soon. Trump is isolating the US from the world but he could take lessons from Nadella, the man who gives credence to the old question how does a farmer get a million dollars? Answer ... start with 100 million dollars. How Nadella is doing this to a once great company will appear in business text books in years to co e.
  • So how much would you pay for this device? Knowing it was a limited run. W10m is going away. Your support would be short lived? Would you still buy one? Could we petition Fitbit? I strongly recommended pinging them frequently to support W10m to the end.
  • Well...I still have a Band and a Band 2 I don't use. Both still look and work great. I guess I could use my 2 for bike rides and the 1 for
  • I suspect the band was cancelled because it was not durable. Which to means it was a failed design. I owned both fyi. The first was not comfortable really and the second the strap broke right after it was cancelled. So it is good MS cancelled it IMO. Probably too ambitious for the time due to hardware limitations.
  • This is heartbreaking :(
    The Band was arguably the best thing to come out of Redmond in a decade. As a fitness nut, I absolutely loved this thing, even though I went through SIX Band 2s!!
    This is why Microsoft just won't ever win the consumer space.
  • "the Band 2 was almost perfect" I don't know whow you can say this with a straight face. From all the reading of complaints on this site, and from having a couple of relatives who had bot the Band and Band 2, the second iteration was a serious step back in durability. Both people I know had the first Band wear down and get replaced over time. However, both still got the Band 2, and it failed more quickly and more times during ownership. Comments on this site and elsewhere frequently mentioned the lack of durability on the Band 2 strap. It seemed that their desire to have more comfort and a better fit came at the expense of sturdiness of the band itself, which led to cracking and tearing. It wasn't problematic, it was a fundamental design flaw that seriously undercut the device.
  • It's become a bit frustrating been an MS loyal since Satya took office. They just keep cancelling stuff instead of taking the right decisions to fix issues. Canceled Windows Phone OS while people were embracing it for it's simplicity and learning to leave with the App gab. Coming out with old processors and no wow factor about the device was the issue but they continue the same way with other devices. Very soon surface line will also be canceled and then xbox. I still ask the question why Bill Gates remains the best thing that ever happened to the company and technology. I was waiting to by a band 3 for myself and my daughter. Now I have to find and model to trust. Damm... Satya!
  • This is my last PC.  Moving everything over after this one dies.  MS is not committed to the consumer. They can't compete with Google and are losing steam to Apple as the OS is becoming more irrelevant with the browser.   MS is not dead but without the mobile integration it's moving into IBM territory as far as relevance outside of the business world.  At least the XBox is still here despite its flaws.
  • The only thing more irrelevant than OSX is linux.
  • Agreed. I am a Windows faithful. I still have an HTC Windows Phone 8X; it has faster and better hardware than my cheap replacement Alcatel. I got that because they were rated well with Windows 10. Apparently, the good Alcatels cost money. If they were able to release two apps for Windows Phone; Remind and Facebook Messenger, I would go back in a heartbeat. It boils down to poor marketing and decisions made by Microsoft's leadership. 
  • With all these sensors, the Band 3 would have been the greatest wearable to grace my wrist.
  • There are other good ones on the market. Remember, that these engineers all went to the same schools
  • MS is just not committed to the consumer market outside of gaming.  Had so much potential with Cortana, Windows Mobile and Band.  They should've bought Fitbit and not bought Nokia.  
  • Another Nadella F up
  • Marketing. It all comes down to marketing. Xbox One was poorly marketed in that they used badly worded explanations to convey DRM policy and such. That console hung on by the skin of its teeth, but sales suffered drastically. Windows Phone/Windows 10 mobile... Nearly zero mass audience marketing. So no adoption took place that could compete with the likes of Android/Apple. Projects in turn are canceled. Band wearables... Same as Windows Phone/Windows 10 Mobile. Lack of mass marketing solutions caused a lack of adoption. You can create the most wonderful and useful piece of technology ever created, but if you don't show it off to everyone in a way that displays its usefulness in a clear and concise manner, it will fall by the wayside.
    The only times I have seen Microsoft products being advertised as useful daily components is passively in TV/Film media. Some Doctor character uses a Surface at a desk in a hospital. Some sorority girl character uses a Windows Phone to snap a selfie...etc. The problem with passive advertisements are that, if you don't already know what the device you are seeing is, you won't even consider it to be something worth storing in your memory. If Microsoft learned to pitch their devices with stronger ad campaigns, they would have stronger consumer success. They however are not good at this, so they have seemed to recognize that and have basically given up for the time being on their consumer development. In time, maybe that will change. Until then, I as the consumer who loves their ecosystem, must make due with their older products until that change occurs, or my patience wears thin and I jump ship to a competitor who does a better job of selling their wonderful technologies.
  • Gear fit pro 2 is where it's at
  • Still fugly as hell with that Ginormous Goiter on the strap.
  • Couple of thoughts. One; so many people have traded in their broken Bands for Garvins, Samsungs, Fitbits and other great, dependable fitness watches. What's gonna make them spend the money on another "gamble"? Two; I had a Band 1... twice. Both fell apart at the clasp and where the band itself meets the watchface. Yeah. Hardware failure. I have a first edition Samsung Gear Fit that has outlasted both. Yes, it misses functions the Band had, but it still works. That's a function the Band didn't have. Durability. My hope is Microsoft went under deeper testing. Here's hoping for a better product. I won't buy it, but there are other faithfuls out there that will jump all over it. If number 3 fails, Microsoft won't be taken seriously from here on out when it comes to wearables. They already dropped the ball on the Windows Phone and the Band is a struggling effort. What they really need to do is focus on the app store and rerelease an affordable Windows Phone. To heck with the Band.
  • Hi Everett,  I think your date is on on this post.  It should be dated jan 27, 2016.   There will be NO affordable windows phone...NO band 3,  etc.  ALL CANCELLED and DEAD!
  • Band 2 was let down by the poor battery life.  48 hours - give me a break!  It was marketed as a fitness device and that means using GPS.  That wore it out far too quickly. I bought it becasue of the TaylorMade golf app, which never lived up to its claims.  Inaccurate greens and tees, which I reported immediately.  They promised, but in 2 years never updated my course nor added the winter layout!  Nor did the band do what it was supposed to in tracking your shots. Sometimes yes, equally no.  Then MS decided that to save battery, they'd switch off the GPS when you weren't looking at the display.  So the shot recognition got worse, and the band took too long to get a signal for its primary purpose of measuring distance to green. Then the rubber strap split at 11 months, so I got a replacement.  I tried to sell it on gumtree and ebay, no takers, no interest.  It still sits here taunting me.
  • I loved my Band 2.  until it stopped working.  My original Band still works but I've since retired it for the Garmin Fenix 5 which is a beast watch. Of course, the Fenix 5 is in a different stratosphere from the Band and other watches.  But it's built like a tank and can do amazing things.
  • I would have 100% bought it bc of the waterproofing. I went with a Xiaomi Mi Band 2 in the end bc of the interchangable color straps, and the waterproofing. I had intended to buy a Microsoft Band 2 but they were recalled from all stores and i didn't get to see one in person to make up my mind.
  • snif...... I missed my band 2. The battery just went dead.... Maybe 2018 it come back windows core os
  • I have tried other devices after my Band 2 broke but none are as satisfying as the Band was.  It had everything I wanted and then some.  The Band App was also a fantastic marriage with the device.  The guided workouts were great and nothing I've seen is as good as the Band was.  The Ionic is just coming out with features that seem as though they are coming from the Band 3.  Why not convert the Band app to an Ionic App! Like many others on this thread, I'd have bought this the moment it came out.  I was already saving money up to get one when they announced the cancellation.  Very disappointed.
  • Yea, but so what? Were people going to buy these to use with their iPhones and Galaxys? With the internal understanding they were killing the phone, no point making accessories for it. 
  • I love my Band 2!!!! I purchased it on December 18, 2015 and to date I'm on my 5th replacement all due to the battery failure. Thank God for my complete warranty. I still have yet to open my most recent replacement as I fear history will repeat itself, lol! Yo Zac, do you want to send me your Band 3 for a brand spankin new Band 2?
  • My Band 2 lives on! the form of the XBox One X that I bought when they gave me store credit for the full purchase price.  I guess having a Band 2 (plus two replacements because of the tearing strap) for free for a couple years wasn't such a bad deal, after all.
  • Damn it Microsoft, why always take the safe path? The band 2 was an amazing product, and you fixed all of its problems and decided not to release it?
  • This brings up a few questions : Does it connect to actual MS Band App ? Does it sync and allow personnalisation ? Were you able to get your activity, sleep or all other sensors stuff analysis in the Health dashboard or in the band app ? Was it a standalone test with just a Bluetooth connexion without MS Band app access ?
  • Yes, I agree with most others. For someone doing long runs with GPS, the battery life was just not good enough on the Band 2. I'm disappointed to see the battery in the Band 3 was not rated any higher. Under the circumstances it would have been no use to me as a sports watch. In the end I had to sell my Band 2 and go back to Tomtom with a Spark, which was excellent. Shame really because I actually loved everything else about it.