Smartphones companies are focusing a lot on the wearable segment. From top OEMs like Samsung, Apple, Sony and more to the Chinese and local brands like Xiaomi, Yu, Intex, so far this year, we have seen a plethora of fitness trackers and smartwatches coming to the market.
To be in the competition, Microsoft too has reportedly been working on the successor of its last-year launched Band, which fetched quite a lot of appreciation from users and did some well for the company in its struggling times. Now, new report suggests that the Band 2 will be unveiled at the company's upcoming event on October 6, where it is also expected to unveil a slew of new devices, including much rumored Lumia 950 and Lumia 950XL smartphones.
Rumored features and specs
According to a report coming from Spain, Microsoft's upcoming fitness band is codenamed Envoy, though we expect it to be launched as the Band 2. The new band is expected to be high on style with a better looking design than the original Band, as Microsoft seems to be focusing more on the ergonomics of the band. It is reported that the Microsoft Band 2 will come in a curved shape, in order to fit better on user's wrist.
It is also said that the Band 2 will features a metallic build on the front panel, which should make it look more premium. Microsoft has changed the placement of the battery this time, and shifted it underneath the display instead of on the side, where it is placed on the original Band. Interestingly though, Microsoft stick to the rectangular design of the dial instead of switching to the circular dial which has become quite popular amongst smart time-piece makers, ever since Moto 360 got much attention for donning a circular dial.
In terms of features and functions, the report suggests that Microsoft's upcoming Band 2 will be able to measure levels of exercises while descending and ascending a height or stairs. Apart from this, it will feature fitness tracking tools and sensors like accelerometer, ambient sensor, Galvanic Skin Response (GSR) and UV sensor to count steps, measure distance and compute calories burnt, apart from GPS, microphone, and heart rate monitor, and more.
Like earlier, this time as well Microsoft's wearable will continue to sync with Microsoft's health apps for iOS, Android and Windows Phone. This will allow users to analyze their workouts, track routine and exercises, and give details of goals to be achieved. In addition, the Microsoft Band 2 will also come with sleep tracker to give information about sleep quality, by keeping a track sleep patterns for days.
Competition in wearable space
Samsung recently announced the Gear S2 which is equipped with advanced features and looks pretty premium. The company's new and smarter Gear features a circular dial with AMOLED display, stainless steel body with plastic as well as leather bands, a dual-core chipset and 250mAh battery. It touts a variety of sensors including an Accelerometer, Ambient Light and Gyro, and the 3G variant of the watch comes with GPS support.
Motorola's new Moto 360, on the other hand, flaunts the same circular dial, however with noticeable design tweaks. Motorola first gen Moto 360 was one of the best looking watches out there, though some users, especially females found it huge for their wrist. This time Motorola ensured that it caters to a bigger set of people by bringing two sizes of the Moto 360 2nd gen. The wearable is more powerful than before, runs on AndroidWear OS, is available in two different sizes with Backlit LCD screen and Corning Gorilla Glass 3, runs a faster quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400 processor, and is equipped with Accelerometer, Ambient Light and Gyro sensors along with support for Vibrations/Haptics engine. Also, it is available with a variety of band options.
Apart from these two, Sony's Smartwatch 3, LG's smartwatch, Asus' and Huawei's new smartwatches that were announced at the recently concluded IFA 2015, and many more new smart time-pieces and fitness band set a tough competition in the market. In such a case, Microsoft Band 2 seems to be quite promising with attractive features onboard, which will help it get an edge over others as it has to be at par its rivals.
Availability and Price
Well, there is no such confirmation from Microsoft about the launch of the Band 2 at the event, but considering the rumors and reports so far, its launch seems imminent. As for its price and availability details, stay tuned to this space to know about the device apart from other Microsoft products, as we will be coverging the event and updating you about all developments.