Your Microsoft Band has sensors that help you track your activity level, UV exposure, location, heart rate, and more.
Your Microsoft Band uses data from its sensors, combined with your profile info in the Microsoft Band app, to provide you with valuable information about your activity levels. The sensors in your Band work together to collect data and calculate measurements like calories burned or distance run. Turning on optional sensors can make these calculations more accurate, but you’ll get useful info even when some sensors are turned off.
Here’s a quick overview of the sensors in your Band. Learn about what they measure and how your Band uses the info they collect.
Optical heart rate monitor
Your Band continuously monitors and reports your current heart rate. Measurements of the fluctuations in your heart rate make your Band’s measurements of calories burned and your exercise and sleep statistics more precise. See Track your heart rate for more info.
The accelerometer/gyrometer in your Band detects motion. This info is used to calculate statistics like number of steps taken, which can be combined with info from your profile and heart rate measurements to estimate how many calories you burn throughout the day or during a workout. For info on how your Band tracks these measurements, see Track your calories burned, Track your exercise, and Track your steps.
Motion and heart rate also indicate periods of restful and light sleep. For more info, see Track your sleep.
Barometer (Microsoft Band 2 only)
The barometer in Microsoft Band 2 detects changes in atmospheric pressure to determine the vertical distance you travel.
When you turn on GPS during activities like running, hiking, or biking, your Band records your route and collects info about the distance you travel. When you sync your Band with your phone, you’ll see a map of your route in the Microsoft Band app so you can retrace your favorite routes later.
GPS data is also used to refine distance and speed calculations. Use the Run Tile or the Bike Tile to start and stop GPS tracking. The Golf Tile also uses GPS for features like shot tracking, scoring, and range finding. For more info on the GPS, see Using GPS mapping.
Use the built-in microphone to speak to Cortana, your personal digital assistant (available on Windows Phone 8.1 Update and above). The microphone is on the side of your Band. When Cortana is enabled on both your phone and Band, just press and hold the action button and speak into the mic. See Use Cortana with Microsoft Band for more info.
Ambient light sensor
Your Band can use info from the ambient light sensor to adjust the touchscreen brightness automatically. To use this feature, set Brightness to Auto Set. Here’s how:
- From the Me Tile on your Band, swipe left and tap Settings > Tools.
Galvanic skin response (GSR) sensors
The GSR sensor measures the conductivity of your skin between the GSR sensor diodes under the clasp. Your Band uses this information to determine if you’re wearing it, so it can adjust how it monitors your activities.
Get a snapshot of the ultraviolet light level where you are by tapping the UV Tile, so you can decide if you need sunscreen, a hat, or maybe a few hours indoors.