Fitbit gives explanation about lack of notifications on Windows Phone

One of the more popular questions Windows Phone users have for Fitbit is "when will Fitbit support Windows Phone notifications?" Such support is in place for other platforms and according to Fitbit, support has been in the works for several years.

We have seen several updates, the most recent being pushed out today, to the Windows Phone app to improve performance and add features. However, Fitbit has uttered very little word beyond "we're working on it" on bringing notifications to Windows Phone.

This may have changed with a recent Fitbit community forums post that sheds a little light on the subject but may not be what Windows Phone users want to hear.

One of the many selling points of the Microsoft Band is that it supports Windows Phone notifications. When your Windows Phone rings, the Microsoft Band can vibrate. When you get a text message or new email, the Band can vibrate.

The current generation of Fitbit devices have the ability to offer similar support but for some reason the notification feature has yet to be extended to Windows Phone users. The problem appears to be that the Windows platform does not provide a GATT server. According to Tristan Rice, a Fitbit Product Manager for Windows Apps,

"Fitbit leverages this technology to provide notifications on our hardware. Microsoft and Fitbit are working together to bring a solution to our shared consumers."

There are two parts to the GATT system, a client and server. The client portion of the puzzle has been implemented, now we just need the server piece to complete the picture. When this will happen is anyone's guess but according to everything we see, Fitbit continues to work on bringing this feature to Windows Phone users.

The bad news is currently Windows 10 does not support this feature either. Once again, Rice explains in the community forums:

"GATT Server is not currently implemented in Windows 10. Windows 10 is a continually updating OS, so I expect some future version of Windows 10 to include support for this feature. "

Finally, Rice goes on to comment regarding why the Microsoft Band can do notifications:

"...the MS Band uses BT Classic, MS Accessories API's and specific firmware implementation in order for their notifications to work. This is a very different approach than how our trackers and other apps work."

Fitbit has an impressive fitness network and selection of devices, but is the lack of notification support a deal killer in your mind? Let us know what you think by sounding off in the comments below.

Source: Fitbit Community Forums

George Ponder

George is the Reviews Editor at Windows Central, concentrating on Windows 10 PC and Mobile apps. He's been a supporter of the platform since the days of Windows CE and uses his current Windows 10 Mobile phone daily to keep up with life and enjoy a game during down time.