Requesting documentation for binary file format sent to the Microsoft Health platform RRS feed

  • Question

  • The Microsoft Health Dashboard is closing up shop May, 31st 2019, rendering Microsoft Band devices mostly useless. In an attempt to keep a much loved device alive, I have put together an application, that provides basic services restoring some/most of the device's functionality.

    The majority of the data interchange between Microsoft Band devices and the companion application can easily be inferred, with one significant exception: Sensor data collected on Microsoft Band devices is available in a binary format only (which is seemingly sent to the Microsoft Health Dashboard for decoding and processing). The format doesn't appear to be very complex: A 16-bit tag, consisting of a type (8 bits) and a length (8 bits) field, followed by a stream of bytes of that length.

    Is there any chance to get the semantics of that binary format published? If for whatever reason that cannot be done, would it be possible to make it available to interested parties under legal contracts?

    Saturday, May 18, 2019 1:31 PM


All replies

  • Hello IInspectable,

    Thank you for posting your request. We will follow up and let you know the response. 


    Jeff McCashland | Microsoft Protocols Open Specifications Team

    Saturday, May 18, 2019 8:20 PM
  • Hi IInspectable,

    The protocol specifications are not published, and there are no plans to do so. We have notified the team of your interest. Please see the previous response here:

    Microsoft Band 2 Bluetooth protocol needed

    There was previously an SDK available for the Band, but it is no longer available. However, the documentation is still online.

    Create amazing apps for Microsoft Band and Microsoft Health


    Jeff McCashland | Microsoft Protocols Open Specifications Team

    Tuesday, May 21, 2019 7:34 PM
  • Thank you for the reply, Jeff.

    I understand, that the Microsoft Band SDK exists, together with documentation. It allows you to customize the device, add tiles, respond to events, or stream out sensor data. It provides the infrastructure for immediate data interchange with the device.

    Still, there is another - closed - channel of data interchange. When recording a run, bike ride, or a hike, that data is stored on the device in a compact binary format. The Microsoft Band app pulls that data off of the device, sends it to the Microsoft Health Dashboard service for decoding and processing, and pulls a structured version of that data back down for display.

    That roundtrip is getting cut off on May, 31st 2019. The unfortunate consequence is, that while Microsoft Band owners can still record runs, bike rides, hikes, they have no way to get anything they can digest out of that data. Unless we are allowed to see, what those bits mean. This information has not previously been disclosed.

    Unlike the linked request, I'm not asking for convenience. I'm asking out of necessity, and I'd be happy with literally any bit of information. I do not require a rigorous specification; a header file with comments (e.g. from the device's firmware, or the cloud service), describing the layout of the up to 256 types of data would be well sufficient.

    I'd be happy to hear back, now that I have clarified, what I am really after.

    Tuesday, May 21, 2019 9:31 PM
  • Hi IInspectable. 

    The protocols and binary file format involving Microsoft Band data sent to the Microsoft Health service have not been published and there are no plans to do so.  For the benefit of other readers of this thread, the FAQ “End of support for the Microsoft Health Dashboard applications and services: FAQ” can be found at”

    Bryan S. Burgin Senior Escalation Engineer Microsoft Protocol Open Specifications Team

    Saturday, May 25, 2019 12:01 AM