Band dead, Band 2 dead, HealthVault soon to be dead...

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Two years ago, Microsoft's HealthVault was a 'thing' (app and all), integrating your fitness data with other records and keeping everything in Microsoft's cloud, the idea being to finally integrate with the medical profession around the world. A privacy nightmare in the making, this hasn't worked out for any company that's tried it, so I'm not surprised to learn by email that Microsoft's killing the HealthVault service and its copies of your data in a couple of months time. 

Of course, if Microsoft had managed to conquer its production problems with the Band and Band 2 (see my full retrospective), its first party smart wearables, then HealthVault would at least have had some Microsoft customers feeding in data and there would have been more point to its existence. Oh well. See below for the full announcement.

From Microsoft's email:

We are reaching out to you because you are a registered user of the HealthVault service. We are providing you this notice to ensure you are aware of an important development:

  1. The Microsoft HealthVault service will be shut down as of November 20, 2019.
  2. Data you have in your HealthVault account will be deleted effective November 20, 2019. If you wish to keep the data in your account, you need to take action now to transfer that data from your HealthVault account.

Please take appropriate action to move your data or information you may have stored in your HealthVault account. To help customers that wish to transfer their data out of HealthVault, several options are available and described below.

If you are using an Application (mobile, web, etc.) that is dependent on the HealthVault service, such applications may also stop working once the HealthVault service is shut down. Please reach out to the Application provider for information on their plans.

Then there were some FAQs:

  1. Can I delete my account and/or the data in it before November 20, 2019? Yes, you may proactively delete your account before November 20, 2019 if you choose to do so. For help, view the HealthVault Help section, Your HealthVault Account - "How do I close my HealthVault Account?"
  2. Can I obtain a copy of or download my data before November 20, 2019? Yes. You can download your data by logging into your account and choosing to export your data. Details on how to export data can be found under the HealthVault Help section, Health Information - "How do I export and save health information from HealthVault?". Once you have exported your data you have the option to take it to another record keeping service of your choice (for example, a Personal Health Record (PHR) service).
  3. I have set up devices like a blood pressure cuff to send data to my HealthVault account. What happens to these connections? On November 20, 2019 HealthVault will stop accepting any new data from all devices. Until then, you may continue to send data to your HealthVault account using your devices (unless you have closed your account).

All a little sad, though again privacy is such a hot topic in 2019, the idea that one's intimate health biometrics could be stored online and passed (in theory securely) to third parties was never going to fly well... Still, RIP the Band 2 (again) - such a lovely accessory and mine still 'works' perfectly:

Microsoft Band 2