The Microsoft Band will soon offer golfers some help with improving their handicap

Microsoft continues to expand the fuctions of its Microsoft Band fitness device, along with Microsoft Health applications and services. The company has announced a new partnership with golf club company TaylorMade that will allow Microsoft Band and Microsoft Health users to improve their game.

The updates, which will be released "in the coming weeks" will include the following new features:

  • Before you play - Take advantage of TaylorMade's comprehensive course finder on your mobile Microsoft Health app to quickly find the courses near you, and once you're on the green, the tees you are playing from.
  • During your round - As you step onto the tee box, our on-board GPS sensor will automatically detect the hole you are on and display your score for the hole you just completed. A simple press of the Microsoft Band action button, whether on the fairway or off in the deep rough, will give you accurate distance to the front, middle and back of the green. The Microsoft Band keeps track of your score with its automatic shot detection and simple swipe interface for those gimmies or occasional mulligan. There may never be a need to carry a paper scorecard again. Meanwhile, advanced sensors track not only your strokes but also your steps, heart rate and calorie burn, seamlessly adding a round of golf into your fitness routine.
  • After your round- Afterwards, dig into the data behind your performance on the Microsoft Health phone application (iOS, Android and Windows Phone) or web dashboard. Check your score, longest drive, number of pars or better per round, pace of play and by signing into TaylorMade's myRoundPro, view your shots plotted on a map of each hole on the course. You can also view how your heart rate and calorie burn varied during your game – hole by hole – and analyze how it affected your performance. Your golf rounds will be accessible to you via Microsoft Health, allowing you to look back at your prior performance without needing those old scorecards.

Microsoft will also add new guided workouts made specifically for golfers that will help them get in shape before walking and swinging on the course for 18 holes.

Source: Microsoft{.nofollow}

89 Comments
  • Wow, that's pretty cool. I don't golf myself, but have wanting to for while.
    Soo if MS get a new band together and actually sells it here, I'm getting one :P
  • Can they just frigging release this thing in Australia already? How frigging hard is it?
  • Exactly. What about the rest of the world? It's like they don't really want to sell this thing.
  • its a useless piece of hardware ... I would wait for a moonraker watch if its real. watch is better than silly band.
  • It is a fitness band(which happens to have some functionalities of Smartwatch). Not a smartwatch.
  • Amazing, for someone to say "It's a useless piece of hardware" really tells me that they have no idea what they are talking about and obviously does not own one.  The least thing you can do is actually use one before making such a silly comment.
  • The second generation Band will hopefully go world wide.
  • And look better.
  • It looks fine. It's just that everyone who sees it assumes it's a Fitbit (which is probably a compliment).
  • Personally, I would like to see a new design. It looks and feels like a shackle on your wrist xP... The FitBit looks a little more natural and feels more like a watch (at least the FitBit HR does, the one with the standard watch claspe) I would like to see the Microsoft Band come up with something a little more natural feeling as well.
  • I have owned mine since they released, and I too would like for it to have a lower profile.  Although I love my band and use it daily, it would be nice if it rode closer to my wrist. (slightly bulkier than I'd like.) My wife used my band for a couple of weeks, then she bought a lumia 830 that came with a free fitbit.  As soon as she put the fitbit on she was unsatisfied with it.  She ordered a MS band the next night.  So, if anyone wants to buy a fitbit, make me an offer... :)  
  • Can other smartwatches and bands do this as yet?
  • I doubt it. At least I never saw one. And forget it, no serious athletes like to do their thing with bulky smartwatches on their wrists, a band is almost on the upper limit I can tolerate.
  • Yeah I was thinking the same. Watch other implement that feature quickly after.
  • What's your definition of serious athlete, because I beg to differ, I think it really depends on what type of athlete.  Why would it bother a cyclist, or even a tennis or raquetball player.  Hell, I run in mine and don't seem to be bothered by it.  It is a little thicker that I'd like but it's definitely not a deal breaker.
  • Theres no reason it couldn't. All it needs is a native App with GPS or just the ability to grab the info from a phone App. The swing data just needs the correct sensors, too. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Yes, there's a lot of golfing apps supporting android wear and pebble. I've been waiting for this on, but don't like the band. Will wait and see what Gen2 brings.
  • No, but the Apple Watch costs a lot more, so I'm sure it's better.
  • I hope you're being sarcastic. That's exactly what Apple wants you to think! I do a LOT of research before I buy products. I don't just buy the most expensive thing in that category.
  • Sarcastic comment = Unexpectedly successful troll.
  • Yes, there are lots of apps for iOS and Android that allow you to use for golf, I'm sure there are plenty for the smartwatches in those ecosystems as well. I have used one that lets me attach the phone to the putter and see all the stats for angles and speed. Very helpful and a real shame that NONE of this exists for WP so far (hardly any apps even just for scoring and GPS for golf on WP either, there's literally like one or two apps for it that are current). Glad to see the Band having some of this - would make me seriously consider one again.
  • Garmin has golf capability on their watches.
  • I'll buy a second gen band just for this.
  • I will too. Phone apps are too intrusive. But I this does what it says it will, I can forget the technology and just play.
  • Still just waiting for the band 2 with a better design.
  • This is fab news. Wonder how we know which courses it supports?
  • I'd say that if it's in America, it's supported.
  • All of them.
  • I can't fricken wait until Gen 2 of this bad boy.
  • Please partner with some tennis stuffs vendors.
  • Or some cricket or baseball even! Any sport that has significant arm motion can possibly benefit from the features of this band. Who knows, may Gen 4 or 5 can be worn on the ankles and improve my kicking motion in football(that's soccer, for the suckers ;) )
  • they said nothing about measuring the arm motion. this is using gps to give information about the course, keep score, and tracking the walk. the accelorometer can possibly measure the speed of the swing, but there is no way the gps could measure the swing motion. it doesn't have that kind of precision. currently athletes use high speed cameras to analyze their motion.
  • Of course it uses the accelerometer.
  • Not sure that tennis would benefit from GPS, and the exercise tile is good for this. I would like a five minute guided workout for Tennis like there is for stretching out for Golf already. 
  • If this comes out before my mom's birthday, and it actually works, I buy one immediately. I wonder if it uses external database for different courses around the globe, or MS's own stuff.
  • the article says they use taylormade's data to find golf courses and information about the tee you're on. 
  • I've never played before but I'll definitely try this out. I love my Band and can't wait for Band 2.
  • Custom workouts??? Please?? According to uservoice we want to be able to customize workouts more than golf. Just saying.
  • 4hrs 44mins of golf? I don't have that much time to waste.
  • Then don't play so slowly. Even as a pair of mediocre golfers, my cousin and I typically take 3-3.5 hours for 18 holes. Playing with my brother-in-law (who is pretty good), we've done it in about 2:45.
  • Yeah only 3hrs and 30mins, 3 boring sports I don't like...#3 cricket, #2 baseball, and #1 is golf.
  • Then say you don't like golf, don't blame the length of time. /sigh, can't say I'm surprised.
  • Depends on where and when you play, of course. Silly statement. I can play a round in 2:30 on one of the shorter courses here, but standard is at least 4 hours on a normally busy day, and sometimes upwards of 5 hours if it's slow and lots of players.
  • Out of curiosity, how long are these supposed courses that take 4-5 hours, and what do you typically shoot on them? My preferred course is pretty short (par-70), and my cousin and I are far from grest (105-115, generally), and it usually takes a bad day where it's not busy and we're being slow about taking out shots to approach 4 hours. Our preferred course usually isn't that busy when we go (typically on weekdays, before people are off work), so we're mostly able to go at our own pace, but we have some slow days because older people won't ever let you play through or speed up their game.
  • I shoot between 85-95 usually. I have honestly never played a course, other than the "executive courses", that takes less than 4 hours to play. The most important thing for speed is course design and how many people are playing. If you play weekends and there are many foursomes you will have to wait. And if the course is designed in a way where the distance between a green and the next tee is far (primarily designed for carts, which I rarely use) it takes longer of course.
  • I'd say the walking is a major reason you're going to take longer, then. We use carts where we play, just a much easier go at it and saves a lot of time. It's a fairly hilly course, but quite compact (most tee boxes are a 10-second walk from the previous green, some even less). The true public courses (city-run, as opposed to our typical course that's privately owned but open to the public) have longer distances from greens to the following tees, so I get what you mean.
  • Yeah that distance adds up over the course of 18 holes when walking On the other hand I move faster around the green than the riders. I think the main reason you play at a brisk pace is the fact that you play weekdays. Much faster without large crowds and having to wait at every tee and second shot.
    The playing time is a tough aspect of golf for sure. Add in driving to and from courses and the warm-up and it's easily a 6 hour outing every time.
  • mind....blown
  • Errr so now they're trying to golf before they can walk.. How hard is it to put an actual walk tile on there as well as run so that runkeeper can discern between the two without me having to log in and edit the activity every time??
  • I'd personally rather have them do a single tile to start a GPS-based workout, and you select run/walk/bike before pressing the action button to get started
  • AMEN!
  • Finally!
  • Went horseback riding the other day with the band. Did 340000 steps.
  • I often gain steps by driving.
  • Sweet!!!
  • Hole in one Microsoft!
  • The distance-to-center green feature is already killer - I love the SHOTLY app, but hate that I have to have my phone hanging out in the cart, or keep taking the phone in and out of my pocket, for it to be useful - but the automatic scoring is just insane. I believe that the Band was already the best value proposition for a wearable, and if Microsoft continues to add features like this... the 2nd-gen Band will be unstoppable.
  • the 2nd-gen Band will be unstoppable.   Probably wont because Microsoft wont advertise it or release it in more countries....
  • This is the one reason I would buy one. That's awesome. I already have a golf GPS app on my phone but it would be cool to not even have to bring out my phone.
  • Cool. How long until I can use GPS in a guided workout?
  • I just started playing a few weeks ago, so I could really use this! Bye bye Fitbit Charge...
  • All right, this is pretty freaking sweet. The obvious concern I have is how we know what this app will actually give us. Will we get an idea of which courses are included beforehand, or do folks who play less-popular courses have to risk buying into a Band for this and not being supported? Also, will this MyRoundPro feature have a web-based version to help with that course determination? Just wondering what all this will ecnompass and how we can sort it out before a purchase.
  • I can't speak to this particular app, but I've used several over the years and can say that even the early versions (circa 2009-2010) had seemingly every course programmed in. So, I'd imagine that at this point Taylor Made would have a handle on this.
  • Agreed, it SHOULD be fine, but throwing $200 at an assumption is a bit dangerous. How many people said Halo: TMCC should/would work fine, and how many times was this repeated after every patch? I'd like confirmation before I consider this something to buy into. Also, this could be made 10 times better if this had also attached a partnership with one of  companis who offers a club attachment for reading shots. Full shot recording in the app would sell the Band and that product to me immediately.
  • I hear you. Good idea too on the attachment pairing.
  • Just curious, what do you mean by "club attachment"?
  • http://www.golfsmith.com/ps/display/?page=ps/golf-swing-analyzer-buyers-guide&tcode=MSN&cm_mmc=MSN-_-golf20aids-_-swing20swing%20analyzer&utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=golf20analyzer&utm_content=&utm_campaign=golf20aids You attach a swing analyze to your clob/glove (as seen at the link, they have different ones that attach at different points), and it tracks things like swing speed and the path your club takes, to help you determine if your'e swinging softly or off-balance, things of that mature. If they could have tied this upcoming feature in with a swing analyzer like the Zepp one, or any of the others, it would make it that much better of a utility. You wouldn't just know where you hit the ball on each shot, but what you did to put the ball there.
  • Interesting usage, but I'm still waiting for proper unicode support.
  • Nice! Saturday, while I was waiting to tee off I was thinking to myself, it would be cool if My Band could do this...
  • This is freaking awesome!  Automatic scoring is a killer feature.  I wasn't seriously considering getting a Band, but I def have to rethink things now.
  • I'm realm excited about this app. I've had the Band since January and am still wearing it every day and finding it useful.
  • Now that is a cool feature.....can't wait to get my Band back....
  • This is awesome, really looking forward to this.
  • This is going to be awesome!!!!
  • so if the app is close to what I get with GolfLogix, I may end up canceling GolfLogix and could even keep Windows Phone.Now if only Delta would update thier Fly Delta app.
  • The Fly Delta app is the type of app I could see benefit from thw W10 universal app strategy, with enough people using laptops while travelling. Time will tell, I guess.
  • Sounds cool! Thought I don't think automatic shot detection is really useful if it works how I'm thinking, you're almost always going to take a couple practice swings before you nail that hole in one ;)
  • Except practice swings don't hit a ball. If it can detect the impact you should be good to go in most cases.
  • I'm sure they've thought of this, or at least have an easy way to accomodate practice swings.
  • I've been waiting for this addition to the band. Couldn't be more excited, the fact that it acts as a range finder and scorecard on top of everything it already does. Awesome idea!!
  • This is literally the only reason I bought the band was to use it as a golf watch/gps (vs $400 for a garmin one). Figured it would come out eventually but not something that integrated with Microsoft Health (just figured a golflogix or someone would have a basic app). This is even better than I had hoped for. Very excited
  • Awesome!  Can't wait to use it!
  • FREAKING LEGIT!!!!!! BEEN WAITING FOR THIS INTEGRATION! PLUS I ALSO USE RBZ's!!!!!! YEAH BOoooooi!
  • Nice!! I could really use this! I love golfing.
  • Hopefully they will have a manual mode stroke counter, not sure auto stroke will work well due to practice swings, unless they take into account GPS movement after last swing
  • Reading through article.... yeah... uh huh... Whoa, GPS for distance to hole? Whoa, score keeper? Post analysis?! WOW, this is awesome!!
  • Any chance we can get that developed for disc golf as well?
  • Yes the band is on the bulky side but it's the only one I've been able to read the display in direct sunlight. Essential for the golf tile to be useful. Needs better waterproofing though. Just wish the function was delivered the day it was announced.
  • Great the golf tile arrived in UK but my local course isn't included yet. I've made the request now more waiting....