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  1. sikoniko's Avatar
    The HR monitor component is the one piece that is keeping me from buying the band. It is a feature I missed when I had a fitbit and when the band broke on that, I decided my next band would include a HR monitor of some sort. not opposed to chest band. What I'm curious of is, do those of you with the band think this could be improved w/ software? Could someone potentially write an app that can pair the band with a chest monitor and integrate that with the band (not me, I'm not a developer)? Should I go ahead and get something else now and wait for v2? My fitbit only lasted about 10 months, so I don't expect to get a year out of these things (sad, but seems the lifecycle of modern mobile tech anyways - my wife calls it planned obsolescence).
    03-24-2015 07:06 AM
  2. Kronus24's Avatar
    The HR monitor component is the one piece that is keeping me from buying the band. It is a feature I missed when I had a fitbit and when the band broke on that, I decided my next band would include a HR monitor of some sort. not opposed to chest band. What I'm curious of is, do those of you with the band think this could be improved w/ software? Could someone potentially write an app that can pair the band with a chest monitor and integrate that with the band (not me, I'm not a developer)? Should I go ahead and get something else now and wait for v2? My fitbit only lasted about 10 months, so I don't expect to get a year out of these things (sad, but seems the lifecycle of modern mobile tech anyways - my wife calls it planned obsolescence).
    A little confuse from you post, did you have a band and the HR monitor wasn't working for you and you return it? Now you are thinking bout about buying it again? But you should get the band? Hell yeah if you can find one, lol. The Band is going to have numerous improvement and the HR monitor is very good with the recent update. Which ppl are have reading very accurate as chest straps. Also the Band so not really about the band pre se, its really about Microsoft health and giving you insight oh your health. SO the more information it receives the better it gets. Her is a good review for you to read .

    http://winsupersite.com/microsoft-ba...microsoft-band
    03-24-2015 07:42 AM
  3. Nate Silver's Avatar
    The HR monitor component is the one piece that is keeping me from buying the band. It is a feature I missed when I had a fitbit and when the band broke on that, I decided my next band would include a HR monitor of some sort. not opposed to chest band. What I'm curious of is, do those of you with the band think this could be improved w/ software? Could someone potentially write an app that can pair the band with a chest monitor and integrate that with the band (not me, I'm not a developer)? Should I go ahead and get something else now and wait for v2? My fitbit only lasted about 10 months, so I don't expect to get a year out of these things (sad, but seems the lifecycle of modern mobile tech anyways - my wife calls it planned obsolescence).
    As to integrating the Band with a separate HR monitor, I don't think it could be done without getting into the hardware of the Band, and it doesn't seem to be designed for being dismantled and reassembled. Additionally, I don't think it would be worthwhile. The HR monitoring function is quite good as is......admittedly a chest strap is the best.........but the Band is ever so close to being on a par with MIO units; the 'gold standard' of optical HR monitors. My belief is that for someone to see significant benefit from a more accurate monitor; they would need to be a serious enough athlete that they would require other functions (that are not available on the Band) even more. I'm thinking more granular analysis like splits, way-points, Iron Man length battery capacity, and other functions available with Runner/Triathlete watches like the high end Garmins, etc. If one is in it to that level, then it makes sense to go with a Fenix 3, 920xt, or whatever.

    But for 'general purpose' all day, every day fitness stuff, the Band's feature set is just about as good as it gets at the moment. In my opinion, the closest competition currently could be Garmin's VivoActive, (no integrated HR), which can be paired with either an optical HR device like a Mio or Soche, or an ANT+ chest strap. The Band has the edge for sleep monitoring due to integrated HR; while the Garmin has the edge for the ANT+ ecosystem of cadence/speed sensors, power-meters, and foot pods. Not sure how the two units compare for GPS performance, but Garmin is pretty well known for that sort of thing. I haven't had much opportunity to test it out on the Band yet, still waiting for this bitter winter cold to break. I think for smartphone functions (notifications, etc.) they are pretty much on par. Of course, if you are a windows phone user, Garmin ain't gonna do you much good. The only other option there is Fitbit's Surge, and I think I've made my disappointment with the performance of that unit pretty clear in previous posts.

    But anyway, my point is that before I considered the possibility of 'jail-breaking' the Band for a separate HR monitor, I'd be looking into a so-called 'pro level' device.....(none of which I understand to be rock-solid perfect either! )
    03-24-2015 08:45 AM
  4. NBrookus's Avatar
    I get the feeling some people get better results from the optical HR monitors than others. I am getting good results (compared to manual count) with the Band and also when I had the Charge HR.

    I can imagine that skin tone and translucence and placement of veins might affect the ability of the device to get good readings?
    03-24-2015 04:49 PM
  5. DroidUser42's Avatar
    I can imagine that skin tone and translucence and placement of veins might affect the ability of the device to get good readings?
    Placement does seem to affect it. If I **** the band so the sensor is about a half-inch to the side, it does much better.
    03-24-2015 06:44 PM
  6. sikoniko's Avatar
    Thanks for your replies. In response to an earlier post, I've never had a band. I used to own a watch that had a HR Monitor chest band that I used during workouts. Then I had a fitbit force. Now I have nothing. Just got back into my p90x routines. I've noticed having the pedometer was motivation for moving and working out helped me get to my 10k steps. Having the HR monitor showed my calorie burn (which is what I really care about) was like a reward for my effort of exercising - ie. more motivation to keep going. Yes - I'm lazy and need the motivation.

    The other thing that interests me about the band is that often I will find I miss calls because I keep the phone on vibrate and will not notice an incoming call while the phone is in my pocket. Having the notice on my wrist will eliminate that. I think I'm sold. Now it's just a matter of having the time to go and pick one up.

    Thanks for your help!
    03-25-2015 05:21 AM
  7. Kronus24's Avatar
    Your making a great choice which the band will only getting better with time because of the cloud potential and with apps.
    03-25-2015 09:53 AM
  8. poit57's Avatar
    I've now had my Band for about a week. I thought it seemed fairly accurate the first two days, but it seems to have gradually gotten worse. When I take my pulse manually while at rest, my heart beats less than once per second. Around 56 to 60 bpm when I count for 15 seconds. My Band, however, usually locks in anywhere from 75 to 85 when at rest. Sometimes it locks in around 115, which I know is not even close to my actual heart rate.

    I also think the resting heart rate during sleep tracking is way too high. In the first 7 days, it has recorded my resting heart rate as 45, 59, 74, 73, 75, 73, 73. I'm going to try to reset the band this evening and see if that makes a difference. I've adjusted the fit and flipped the sensor between both sides of my wrist, and I've gotten similar results.
    03-27-2015 04:33 PM
  9. DroidUser42's Avatar
    What I've found is that initial readings (when you activate the HR) can be way off, but if there's no motion, it will lock in. I'm not sure just what gets recorded. I'd hope it would be the HR after lock-in and it had settled down.

    I think it's another case where what is displayed and what's saved are two different things.
    03-27-2015 06:48 PM
  10. wynand32's Avatar
    I bought a Band this weekend and it was updated, so I'm assuming it's all up-to-date. I'm wondering about HR accuracy myself, primarily peaks. My peak rate on a walk today is supposed to have been 143 (which I highly doubt; it was a casual walk with the dog, nothing strenuous; other similar walks have peaked at about 121 max). Then, my Health portal shows peak rate of 200 (if I'm reading it correctly), which I think I would have noticed and which couldn't correlate with an exercise (since that would be 143). Certainly, my resting rate didn't hit 200.

    So, yeah. Just a general report that things do seem a little wonky in terms of HR.
    03-31-2015 09:29 PM
  11. poit57's Avatar
    Follow-up to my post from a few days ago. My BMR is around 1850 calories per day, but I didn't change the default calorie goal of 2400. Sitting at my computer desk at work Monday with no strenuous activity all day, my Band said I reached my calorie goal for the day at 3:30 PM. One of Microsoft's online agents walked me through some troubleshooting steps including factory resetting my Band and forcing the firmware to reload.

    I still had very high readings Tuesday, so I went into my local Microsoft Store to compare results with their demo units. When I was showing a few of their employees my HR readings, it took about 30 seconds to lock in a heart rate. It locked in at 111 then gradually lowered to 97. One of the sales reps was trying to convince me that walking into the store in the middle of the mall and it being a warm day outside is why my heart would be beating higher than normal. One of the other guys ended up helping me and took me to their demo units. Within 5 seconds, my heart rate was locked in at 69, which was much more reasonable. It was still higher than I expected, but this is a much more likely reading if my heart rate was actually elevated due to my walking.

    I view this as proof that the heart rate monitor on my Band was not operating within normal parameters for these devices. Since I purchased online, they said they couldn't really do anything in the store. I chatted with another online agent last night and set up a warranty. I'm hopeful that I will see better results with the replacement unit.
    04-01-2015 08:25 AM
  12. B1llyMadison's Avatar
    I just finished giving blood and they said my HR was 42 and then retried and it was 40. My Band says my HR is 72.

    It's really odd that the Band usually says my HR is between 69-73. My resting HR when I sleep is 41..

    Ugh.
    04-02-2015 08:53 AM
  13. Lyle K's Avatar
    I've been using my Band for over a month now...
    I had a lot of problems with HR accuracy but constantly fiddled around with placement and fit.
    I found that during exercise, the fit MUST be tight or you lose the "lock" several times during a workout period.
    Over the last three weeks or so, my HR has been very accurate, not only during exercise but during normal activities and sleep.
    The readings have been very consistent too.
    If you are having problems with the Band staying "locked" on your HR, try tightening it a notch or two!
    04-04-2015 12:20 PM
  14. Upstate Dunadan's Avatar
    I actually find the HR is not as accurate when I have the Band tight during my gym workouts

    Having it on the looser side works best for me.
    04-04-2015 06:01 PM
  15. poit57's Avatar
    I actually find the HR is not as accurate when I have the Band tight during my gym workouts

    Having it on the looser side works best for me.
    I'm still waiting on my replacement, but what I was finding is that the tighter the fit, the more extreme the high readings got when at rest. I didn't really play with the fit as much during workouts. My Band is a medium and I was usually wearing it one or two clicks from the tightest setting, but I did try it several times all the way on the tightest setting.
    04-05-2015 08:28 AM
  16. poit57's Avatar
    I received my warranty replacement yesterday and the HR monitor is much more accurate. The readings range from 57 to 62 while at rest as opposed to a range from 72 - 115 at rest with my original unit. I haven't tested the replacement during exercise yet, but I'm much more confident in the estimated calorie count throughout the day. My first Band had me reaching my goal at 3:30 in the afternoon while sitting at a desk all day.
    04-15-2015 10:20 AM
  17. rjhin's Avatar
    So for anyone doing tests, please note:
    - whether you wear the band facing in or out (inside of wrist or on top of wrist)
    - which mode you use (running or 'workout')
    - which type of sport you're doing
    - which comparison device you're using if any (brand, HR strap?)
    - whether your band shows 'out of sync' (heart icon outline only) or 'in sync' (solid heart icon)

    Personally I see pretty good agreement when the band claims to be in HR sync, the problem being that it loses sync a lot.
    Hi I curious to fine out if you have redone any of your tests since the most recent firmware updates have been pushed to the band.
    04-19-2015 08:53 PM
  18. Joe920's Avatar
    Hi I curious to fine out if you have redone any of your tests since the most recent firmware updates have been pushed to the band.
    I'm afraid I kind of stopped using it. :(
    04-20-2015 12:35 AM
  19. bockersjv's Avatar
    Maybe i have thin skin but the Band HR function has been identical to my Polar HR readings when I have worn the strap. The GPS is super accurate too.
    04-20-2015 06:52 AM
  20. DroidUser42's Avatar
    Hi I curious to fine out if you have redone any of your tests since the most recent firmware updates have been pushed to the band.
    I know you weren't addressing me, but I did run some test way back. No, I haven't run any. And I need to. But my last trip to the gym with the prior update shows that it still bounces around quite a bit when I'm on the elliptical.
    04-20-2015 08:31 PM
  21. rockstarzzz's Avatar
    Ok, here's my result. I was wearing the band the way I normally do (display out, on wrist bone). This places the sensor right on a visible blood vein. I put it in "run" mode with the GPS off. My interest is in the readings you get as a "workout coach", not the graph you get later. So what I did was walk around the mall with my Band and Polar for 25 minutes taking a photo about every 30 seconds. For the last 5 minutes I just sat. Note that that while resting, it tracks very nicely. I also have data as to if the Band HR was locked or not, but I'm not good at figuring out how to graph that in a way that's understandable. Let's just say it was unlocked for 21 of the samples. And not all of the wild differences was when it was unlocked. That big slide from 143 down to 106 was locked. (But was unlocked on either side of it.) So simply ignoring unlocked readings doesn't work.

    I did include the graph I got in MS Health. Notice that it's smoothed out. The graph is probably adequate for recording the results, but the display readings have some fairly wild swings.
    The first three minutes are the most interesting. What was the activity before you started comparison? Are these devices on two different wrists?

    What will further help is the %CV or standard deviation between the two sets of readings. I think you could make a box and whiskers plot which will show the comparison in much nicer way. Although it looks like the Band is erratic in how it shows on the display, the average deviation may not be so bad overall.

    I've noticed whenever there is a "jump" or a "fall" in heart rate aka interval training - band takes a 2-10 second lag to notice and keep up with change. But if you do something over a longer period of time without big changes in HR, Band tracks it accurately.

    However, my resting HR when I sleep very restfully (the dark purple blocks in sleep tracking) shows that my resting heart rate is 40-43 on average in last 5 days. That worries me.
    04-21-2015 07:40 AM
  22. Nate Silver's Avatar
    Generally speaking, my Band runs quite closely to my Mio Fuse or Garmin strap, albeit responding more slowly to variations. This while observing the 'live' readings on device. What I do notice is that there can be wider discrepancies in the graphs when viewed after the fact, and I think this is down to differing smoothing algorithms applied by various manufacturers and applications.

    I have also noticed a few occasions when the Band just didn't seem to get off on the right foot. For instance, getting into a treadmill activity where the strap will fairly quickly climb to the 120/130 range during warm-up, but the Band seems to be stuck in the 70/80 range. Sometimes pausing/restarting the Band or adjusting position will get it going, sometimes not so much. It doesn't happen often, but it drives me crazy when it does. That's why I always tend to use more than one monitor during activities.
    04-21-2015 08:10 AM
  23. TruPlaya187's Avatar
    Hi, Just did the test at my desk and also earlier while I was walking and my Band got my heart rate correctly.
    04-21-2015 01:28 PM
  24. DroidUser42's Avatar
    The first three minutes are the most interesting. What was the activity before you started comparison? Are these devices on two different wrists?
    Eating at the food court. Then I got up, tossed the garbage and walked out to the mall and started my walk. About 3 minutes in, I walked up some stairs to the next level. Yes, they were both on the same wrist so I could photo them together for each snap shot, but the Polar is a chest strap device. The Polar is a good match for what I was doing.
    04-21-2015 02:43 PM
  25. rockstarzzz's Avatar
    Eating at the food court. Then I got up, tossed the garbage and walked out to the mall and started my walk. About 3 minutes in, I walked up some stairs to the next level. Yes, they were both on the same wrist so I could photo them together for each snap shot, but the Polar is a chest strap device. The Polar is a good match for what I was doing.
    I think if the first 3 minutes are just walks, then probably like everyone has been noticing band is erratic to routine slow motions but once you get the heart beat going, it is pretty consistent. I tested this yesterday on a treadmill.

    I walked 3 minutes - band was out 10 heartbeats vs treadmill.
    I then jogged for 3 minutes - band was out by 3-4 heartbeats vs treadmill.
    I then ran for 30 minutes - band was only 1 heartbeat out throughout those 30 minutes.
    I then jogged for 10 minutes - band was only 1 heartbeat out.
    I then walked for 1 minute - band was 7-8 heartbeats out.
    04-22-2015 05:35 AM
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