Today Microsoft has announced new ways for developers to create content streams directly to the Microsoft Band. One interesting tidbit that should be noted is that the announcement comes in a blog post on the Lumia Conversations blog.
First off, the Microsoft Band SDK has been updated with new enhancements. These include:
Refreshing of 3rd-party tile contents in-place
Better support for building icons as buttons
Ability to control the tile screen timeout
I've heard from many developers who have complained about the lack of SDK features, including the ability to control screen timeouts. These enhancements should be a welcome addition.
But, the primary news today is that Microsoft is releasing new ways for developers to deliver data to the Microsoft Band. Instead of relying on apps that install on a smartphone and deliver content from there, these new methods allow information to be delivered from virtually any data source directly through the Microsoft Health app. Both new content delivery mechanisms are available today in Preview.
The first is the Web Tile. Web Tile gives developers the ability to write tile code once web tile code once to support multiple mobile platforms (iOS, Android and Windows) since the Microsoft Health app takes responsibility for doing the rest. Apps written in the manner simply adds web tiles to Microsoft Band, periodically fetching web resources and delivering it to the web tile on the Band.
The second is Cloud API. Microsoft Health Cloud API allows for the enhancement apps and services with real-time user data pulled from the Microsoft Health dashboard. The RESTful APIs provide comprehensive user fitness and health data in an easy-to-consume JSON format.
Now, get out there and make me some apps!