The Microsoft Band 2 continues to get better. Introduced in October 2015, Microsoft has steadily been adding new software features to it. The latest addition is support for Cortana when the wearable is paired to an Android smartphone. This feature had previously been limited to Windows Phone devices.
With Cortana on your Band, you can access your personal assistant for instant notifications of important events, communications, and voice-active info without reaching for your phone. Speak into the mic on your Band to Cortana to take actions for you.
Cortana support is part of the latest Microsoft Health for Android app update. Unfortunately, the feature is currently only offered to U.S. users. It is also not available on the original Band.
The update also allows you to create new challenges for steps, cardio score, runs, and bike rides. You can then challenge and compete with your Facebook friends who also use Microsoft Health and the Microsoft Band 2. A leaderboard lets everyone then see how they are faring against others.
Cortana is Microsoft’s personal digital assistant answer to Google Now and Apple Siri. It allows you to use voice commands to perform a range of actions, including responding to texts and various notifications without ever having to reach for your smartphone.
Microsoft Health for Android is a free download from Google Play.