A report from a few days ago suggested that Google's parent company Alphabet was in talks to purchase fitness tracker manufacturer Fitbit, and sure enough, an official announcement has just confirmed that the deal is going ahead at a cost of $2.1 billion. With confidence in Wear OS seemingly at an all-time low, this latest news could signal that Google's wearable ambitions have some life in them yet.
According to a post by hardware SVP Rick Osterloh on Google's blog, the company "has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Fitbit." He goes on to say that this is an opportunity to invest in the future of Wear OS and also hints at plans to "introduce Made by Google wearable devices into the market." A Pixel watch has long been anticipated and was apparently on the cards back in 2016 before being scrapped. It looks like Google will be revisiting own-brand wearables with the help of the Fitbit team once the acquisition is completed.
— Google (@Google) November 1, 2019
The integration of Google Fit with Wear OS has always lagged behind what Apple has been doing with its smartwatches, so the Fitbit purchase could be seen as a way to close that gap and offer a more compelling fitness solution. In a separate blog post, VP of Product Management for Wear OS Sameer Samat is keen to stress the importance of wearable tech and Google's ongoing commitment to the platform that started out as Android Wear back in 2014. It may not have blossomed into a successful operating system over the last 5 years, but more exciting times could be up ahead.