Monday, 3 November 2014

Microsoft Band (day 5: rest)

No running after the half-marathon, so I thought I would blog some random info about the Band today.

Configuring the Run tile

I mentioned that you can change which stats are displayed while running - to do so click on the Band (top-right of screen) and choose Manage Tiles. This shows the list of available tiles with a 'switch' next to each that lets you show/hide the tile on your Band.

Some tiles have additional options (indicated by an 'edit pen' icon). Touch the row to configure; in the case of the Run tile it will display a screen explaining the options and an Edit button at the bottom of the screen. The final Run Settings screen lets you click to edit which run statistics are displayed on the Band screen:

Finding your historical heart-rate data

I just assumed that the band was monitoring my heart-rate and step-count all the time, but it took me while to find the data in the app. You would expect to access it somewhere in the Activity History screen, but that only contains Runs, Workouts, and Sleeps.

Instead touch the steps count on the main screen. This will take you to the rendering for a the current day's steps (as a histogram), with heart-rate graphed in the background. Touch the graph to switch to heart-rate view; or scroll down to view past day's step summary... notice the gap in this data (middle screenshot) -- the Band was off my wrist for charging :-)

You can display data for past days by tapping one of the past-day rows. The historical data has a darker header color (almost black, not purple), and you can view the steps and heart-rate data throughout the day... this is half-marathon race day:


Just kidding... kinda. There isn't a Flashlight tile... but it is amazing how much light the Band emits when showing the menu (I've chosen a lime green theme, so it's quite bright). In a darkened house I can easily navigate around using the ambient light from the Band's screen...

If you want total darkness from your Band, enter sleep mode (if you're actually going to sleep) or else turn Watch Mode off so that the screen doesn't even show the time.

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