Some recent reports indicate that Microsoft might be considering delaying or even cancelling the Band 3, the presumptive successor to the company's Band 2 fitness tracker/smartwatch hybrid. Nothing's been confirmed yet, but all signs point to the Microsoft Health platform living on and the Redmond company relying on partners to connect to the service rather than producing their own hardware.
We find it quite odd, therefore, that Microsoft changed the name of their Microsoft Health app for Android to simply "Microsoft Band." The change came in an update issued today whose primary purpose was to change the name of the app.
Here's the changelog:
- We've got a new name! The Microsoft Health app is now the Microsoft Band app, everything else is the same.
- Bug Fixes
This is an odd change that could be entirely unrelated to any plans that Microsoft has laid out for its Band hardware. Consider Microsoft's statement when asked specifically about the Band's future by ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley:
“We continue to invest and innovate in the Microsoft Health platform, which is open to all hardware and apps partners across Windows, iOS, and Android devices. We also continue to sell Microsoft Band 2 and remain deeply committed to supporting our customers and exploring the wearables space.”
One could speculate that Microsoft will release a new version of Microsoft Health at some point aimed at cross-platform support, and that the Band 2 will now have its own specific app that will eventually be phased out along with the hardware. We'll have to see if this change rolls over to the iOS and Windows 10 versions of the app as well, which would provide additional support to such a contention. Let us know in the comments what you think about Microsoft's movements in the health and fitness space.
Go to the Google Play Store and update the app if you don't mind the name change. Let us know in the comments what you think about Microsoft's movements in the health and fitness space.
Update: Thanks to commenter tsay below, we can now report that the name change has occurred on Windows 10 Mobile devices as well. We suppose iOS will be next, leaving us to really wonder what Microsoft is doing here.