At a press event in New York City today, Microsoft unveiled the newest version of its wearable activity tracker, the Microsoft Band.
The new Band, available for pre-order today, looks similar to the original device but now has a curved screen and a less bulky battery. In addition to GPS tracking, sleep tracking, a heart rate monitor, and other features found in the first Band, the new version also has a barometer to track elevation changes and can measure VO2Max, an advanced metric that tells you how much oxygen your body can process in one minute.
The Band will hit store shelves on Oct. 30. It’s priced at $249, which is $50 more than its predecessor.
The new Band also includes integration with Cortana, Microsoft’s virtual assistant, and will support a bevy of new apps like Uber, Subway, and more. Microsoft also announced a partnership with Lose It, a weight loss app.
The new Band, like the original, will work with Microsoft Health, the company’s software platform that collects data from a variety of wearable devices to give users insights into their personal health.
Microsoft is competing against established fitness trackers from companies including Fitbit and Jawbone, as well as the Apple Watch. The company initially took a cautious approach to the release of the original Microsoft Band, the first flagship device for the Microsoft Health platform which debuted one year ago. The limited supply made the device difficult to find, but Microsoft increased availability earlier in 2015.
GeekWire is in NYC covering Microsoft’s event and you can follow our live blog here.