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Microsoft Band UK release date announced

Microsoft has confirmed that its flagship fitness tracking wristband will now be more widely available.

The Microsoft Band was previously only available in the US via the company’s official retail outlets.

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However, in a company blog post (opens in new tab), the Redmond-based firm announced that it had secured more retail partnerships, both in the US and abroad.

“We are excited to announce that we will expand our presence in the US retail channel with the addition of three new retail partners – Amazon, Best Buy and Target,” explained Matt Barlow, the company’s general manager of new devices. “Microsoft has a long history of partnering with these retailers and we are pleased to welcome them on this journey with us. They will begin selling product today, with increased shipments planned for the weeks and months ahead.”

The Microsoft Band is also available to pre-order in the UK immediately, with a launch date planned for 15 April. The device will be available for £170 at the Microsoft Store, as well as Currys PC World, O2 and Amazon.

The gadget launched in the US back in October, where it has received favourable reviews, holding an average user score of 4.3 out of 5. The fitness tracker includes heart monitoring and the usual health metrics and features its own version of Microsoft’s virtual personal assistant Cortana.

The device is currently Microsoft’s only wearable product, but it is not short of competitors. The wearable market has seen an influx of fitness trackers from both sports and technology brands, and the competition is expected to intensify with the upcoming launch of the Apple Watch.

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Microsoft is reportedly pleased with the initial response to its wearable device, which is regularly sold out via official channels. However, it remains to be seen if the Microsoft Band will continue to be a success in markets outside of the US.

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Barclay has been writing about technology for a decade, starting out as a freelancer with IT Pro Portal covering everything from London’s start-up scene to comparisons of the best cloud storage services.  After that, he spent some time as the managing editor of an online outlet focusing on cloud computing, furthering his interest in virtualization, Big Data, and the Internet of Things.