Smartwatches can currently be seen as an evolving piece of technology that is yet to be perfected. There are multiple companies that are trying to grab a bigger share of the market like Garmin, Fitbit, Apple and others with their respective offerings. However, it seems like Google’s parent company Alphabet might be planning on getting a leg up against the competition. As per a Reuters report, Google owner Alphabet has made an offer to buy Fitbit, which is a US-based wearable manufacturer.
Alphabet bids for Fitbit
Citing people who are familiar with the matter, the Reuters report says that it is not confirmed whether the negotiations between Google and Fitbit might turn into a deal for sure. While it is not known how much has Google offered Fitbit for acquisition, the latter’s shares jumped about 27 percent soon after the Reuters report was published, with its market cap at $1.4 billion.
Both companies have declined to comment on the subject. “A deal for Fitbit would come as its dominant share of the fitness tracking sector continues to be chipped away by cheaper offerings from companies such as China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd and Xiaomi Corp,” the Reuters report states.
Google’s Wear OS is lagging behind
Google offers the Wear OS operating system for smartwatches, which hasn’t really taken off. The biggest smartphone vendor that has adopted Google’s OS is Fossil, whose market share fell from 3.2% in 2018 to a paltry 2.5% in Q1 2019, as per a counterpoint research. Back in February, another report suggested that Wear OS has managed to capture merely 12 percent of the entire US smartwatch market, while Fitbit and Samsung have the lion’s share of a whopping 88 percent.
Google’s new smartwatch in the pipeline?
The bid made by Alphabet to buy Fitbit can be thought of as the company’s way of coming up with its own smartwatch. However, there isn’t much the company might be able to do even after acquiring Fitbit if it plans to ship the latter company’s smartwatches with Wear OS. Wear OS is a resource-intensive operating system and when paired with insufficiently powerful hardware, it is bound to deliver a subpar experience.
Unless Google is planning to ditch Qualcomm’s processors and develop a more powerful processor for its own for smartwatches, which is highly unlikely, we can’t be sure that even Fitbit devices will be able to deliver a better experience.
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