Google shells out $2.1B for Fitbit and its health-focused wearables

Google is buying Fitbit for $2.1 billion

Google is buying Fitbit for $2.1 billion

While Google has joined other major technology companies like Apple and Samsung in developing smart phones, this will be the company's first foray into wearable - at least on the hardware end.

All of this has a familiar ring to it. Google buying Fitbit sounds like a good idea, but Google now does not have an excellent track record in wearables, and combining two mediocre platforms does not create an Apple Watch killer.

The search giant will have stiff competition as fellow tech giant Apple has already overtaken almost half of the smart watch market as of 2018 in terms of number of products shipped. Designing an SoC for these ultra-compact form factors gives these companies a huge advantage in device performance, battery life, and compactness, which are all critical aspects of a smartwatch.

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But the Versa 2 is competing with Apple Watch Series 3 at the same price point. The new fitness trackers could incorporate better integration with smartphones using Google's Fit apps as well. In the case of Saudi Arabia, I believe that one of the most important issues will be empowering women and youth.

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Earlier this week, on October 28, a report from Reuters surfaced to indicate that Google was in a bid to purchase Fitbit. Google could then display ads for rival coffee shops. The sad, practical truth is probably patents and engineers.

James Park and Eric Friedman founded Fitbit in 2007, envisioning that sensors and wireless technology could be integrated for a wearable product to track fitness and health. There's no reason Google can't be there right alongside them. In short: Google's purchase is nearly certainly a speculative one.

Google has confirmed plans to buy Fitbit as it looks to step up its fight against Apple Watch. Google said it would give Fitbit users the choice to review, move or delete their data. In a blog post, Google hinted that might change. It is easily the best Wear OS device I have used. The combination might perhaps even produce the fabled Pixel Watch. That part only makes sense. That's reassuring given that Google's smartwatch platform has also struggled a little, receiving few meaningful updates, and with most smartphone makers either ignoring the wearable space or using alternative software, such as Samsung with Tizen. "We will never sell personal information to anyone", said Osterloh.

A survey by research firm IDC for the second quarter of 2019 found Fitbit in fourth place in a market led by China's Xiaomi leading the global market, followed by Apple - which makes the leading smartwarch - and Chinese-based Huawei.

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