Health and fitness trackers specialist Fitbit is taking a leap into the wider wearables market with the acquisition of smartwatch maker Pebble.
The company said last week that it has acquired assets including key personnel and intellectual property related to Pebble’s software and firmware development.
Pebble no longer operates as an independent entity and has ceased manufacturing. As a result, the Pebble Time 2, Pebble Core and Pebble Time Round Kickstarter Editions will not go into final production and eligible backers will receive a refund. Fitbit has pledged to maintain services so that existing Pebble devices continue to work as normal.
Through the Pebble acquisition, Fitbit hopes to speed up the delivery of new products, features and functionality, including the “general purpose utility” that many consumers value in connected devices. The deal will also accelerate the development of customised solutions and third party applications for Fitbit Group Health customers and partners, including researchers, employers and providers.
“With basic wearables getting smarter and smartwatches adding health and fitness capabilities, we see an opportunity to build on our strengths and extend our leadership position in the wearables category,” explained James Park, chief executive and co-founder of Fitbit. “With this acquisition, we’re well positioned to accelerate the expansion of our platform and ecosystem to make Fitbit a vital part of daily life for a wider set of consumers, as well as build the tools healthcare providers, insurers and employers need to more meaningfully integrate wearable technology into preventative and chronic care.”