Microsoft has recently released a new Band firmware update that includes some welcome changes, including support for personal assistant Cortana on Android devices.
Cortana is already available on Android, and with this new update, Microsoft enables Band 2 users who also happen to have mobile phones powered by this operating system to use the assistant too.
“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, get facts, and more,” Microsoft says in the description of this new update.
Another important addition that’s part of this firmware update is the so-called zoned heart rate tracking, which enables the HR counter to change colors automatically depending on the reached level.
Microsoft’s push on Android devices
It’s no secret that Microsoft is working so hard () to bring its services and apps on Android devices, and in a recent email sent to employees head of the Windows division Terry Myerson reiterated the , including Android and iOS.
“Our company will be pragmatic and embrace other mobile platforms with our productivity services, device management services, and development tools – regardless of a person’s phone choice, we want everyone to be able to experience what Microsoft has to offer them,” Myerson said.
Microsoft is trying to invest more into its new approach of being a devices and services firm (or as CEO Satya Nadella says “mobile first, cloud first” company) and this strategy can help increase the user base even with customers that purchased Android and iOS devices.
To get the new firmware update you need to sync the Band with the Health app, while for Cortana support the latest version of the app is needed, which you can find in the Google Play Store or by using a dedicated APK published out there on the web.