Watch out, Apple. There's another company about to enter the wearable tech race, and they'll be counting their steps and measuring their calorie burn along the way. Microsoft launched a "Microsoft Band," which is a device that allows users to monitor their fitness regime in the most inconspicuous way possible — by wearing it on their wrists. But we're no strangers to wearable tech. The Apple Watch has been all the rage in the press for the last month, so which device gives you the most bang for your buck? Let's compare the similarities and differences.
- Available now, and launched before the Apple Watch.
- Monitors fitness including counting your steps, calories burned, and sleep quality
- Bluetooth radio syncs to your phone — including iOS, Android, and Windows phone
- GPS and heart rate monitor
- Capabilities with text, email, social media, and calendar alerts
- Retails for $199
- 2 day battery life
- Will be released in 2015
- Monitors fitness including counting steps, calorie burn, and heart rate
- Capabilities with text, email, social media, but bonus, allows phone calls
- Wrist-to-wrist communication with other Apple Watch users
- Apple Pay is enabled — bye bye, credit cards!
- You can use apps including maps, passbook, camera, and stocks
- Photos and music!
- Retails for $349
- 1 day battery life
- Somewhat stylish with different faces, colors, and bands
It looks like slow and steady might win this race. Even though it's yet-to-be-released and costs $150 more, the Apple Watch definitely has some unique features that make it desirable. But until then (or for those who only care about tracking fitness), the Microsoft Band is definitely an adequate substitute.