Menu
Microsoft Band lets developers build apps that tap RSS feeds for content

Microsoft Band lets developers build apps that tap RSS feeds for content

Microsoft is also opening its Health Cloud platform to outside developers, allowing them to integrate fitness data into their apps

Microsoft Band will let developers create apps that pull small bits of information from RSS feeds, like stock quotes.

Microsoft Band will let developers create apps that pull small bits of information from RSS feeds, like stock quotes.

Microsoft is letting developers create apps for its Band fitness tracker that convey information pulled from RSS feeds and display it on the device's screen.

The apps, which Microsoft calls Web tiles, work best at relaying "glanceable" information, like stock quotes or weather reports, the company said Thursday.

Creating an app is a quick and straightforward, according to Microsoft. First, developers visit a Microsoft website where they provide an icon file and link to an RSS feed.

The app is then loaded to the Band via the Microsoft Health app that controls the wearable device. Because Microsoft Health works on several mobile platforms, the app will run on devices that run iOS, Android and Windows Phone.

The end result is an app that has limited functions, but can provide people with small bits of news that are relevant to them. But by offering users apps that provide bite-sized portions of information, the Band may better compete against and possibly stand out from other fitness trackers. Some of the Band's features, which include the ability to track steps, calories burned and sleep quality, are also found in wearable devices from rivals including Fitbit and Jawbone.

Microsoft is also opening its Health Cloud platform to developers. By using APIs, developers could incorporate a user's activity data into their apps. For example, an app could take location data from a user's run and use it to create a map of the route. Apps could also use the fitness and biometric data a user stored in the cloud to customize workouts. A user would have to agree to give an app permission to access this information in order for the program to offer personalized services, Microsoft said.

The Microsoft Band has been steadily gaining features since it debuted last October. Some of the additions include a virtual keyboard that came in a February software update and integration with the popular cycling app Strava in April. This week, the Band received an update that allows it to track golf swings.

Fred O'Connor writes about IT careers and health IT for The IDG News Service. Follow Fred on Twitter at @fredjoconnor. Fred's e-mail address is fred_o'connor@idg.com

Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags consumer electronicsMicrosoft

Featured

Slideshows

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel

​As the channel changes and industry voices deepen, the need for clarity and insight heightens. Market misconceptions talk of an “under pressure” distribution space, with competitors in that fateful “race for relevance” across New Zealand. Amidst the cliched assumptions however, distribution is once again showing its strength, as a force to be listened to, rather than questioned. Traditionally, the role was born out of a need for vendors and resellers to find one another, acting as a bridge between the testing lab and the marketplace. Yet despite new technologies and business approaches shaking the channel to its very core, distributors remain tied to the epicentre - providing the voice of reason amidst a seismic industry shift. In looking across both sides of the vendor and partner fences, the middle concept of the three-tier chain remains centrally placed to understand the metrics of two differing worlds, as the continual pulse checkers of the local channel. This exclusive Reseller News Roundtable, in association with Dicker Data and rhipe, examined the pivotal role of distribution in understanding the health of the channel, educating from the epicentre as the market transforms at a rapid rate.

Educating from the epicentre - Why distributors are the pulse checkers of the channel
Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017

Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017

After Hours made a welcome return to the channel social calendar last night, with a bumper crowd of distributors, vendors and resellers descending on The Jefferson in Auckland to kickstart 2017. Photos by Maria Stefina.

Kiwi channel reunites as After Hours kicks off 2017
Arrow exclusively introduces Tenable Network Security to A/NZ channel

Arrow exclusively introduces Tenable Network Security to A/NZ channel

Arrow Electronics introduced Tenable Network Security to local resellers in Sydney last week, officially launching the distributor's latest security partnership across Australia and New Zealand. Representing the first direct distribution agreement locally for Tenable specifically, the deal sees Arrow deliver security solutions directly to mid-market and enterprise channel partners on both sides of the Tasman.

Arrow exclusively introduces Tenable Network Security to A/NZ channel
Show Comments