Google to buy Fitbit for $2.1 billion
Google has made some moves in the wearable space, with its Wear OS driving smartwatches by Fossil, Mobvoi and others. Now it is moving beyond the software side of things in a big way, announcing a new deal with Fitbit that will see it acquire the fitness tracking company for US$2.1 billion.
Since emerging as a fitness-focused startup in 2007, Fitbit now sells its trackers, smartwatches and smart scales in more than 100 countries, with tens of millions of users around the world.
In buying the company, Google hopes to leverage this dedicated customer base, Fitbit’s expertise and its own AI and software experience to “spur innovation in wearables and build products to benefit even more people around the world.”
Google also revealed plans to begin its own line of “Made by Google” wearables, while continuing to invest and develop its own Wear OS software.
The acquisition may be a little unnerving for current users of Fitbit devices, concerned about where their data might be headed. Google’s Senior Vice President of Devices and Services Rick Osterloh addressed this in a blog post accompanying the announcement, stating that Fitbit data will “not be used for Google ads” and that Google will give Fitbit users the choice to review, move, or delete their data.” A Fitbit press release makes the same claims.