Home ONLINE SHOPPING GUIDES Is the Google Fitbit deal the top of Put on OS?

Is the Google Fitbit deal the top of Put on OS?

Credit score: Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

Opinion put up by

C. Scott Brown

In the course of January, Google and Fitbit formally confirmed the previous’s acquisition of the latter. There’s nonetheless some debate about whether or not or not the US Division of Justice goes to quash the deal. For now, anyway, it seems the union is transferring ahead.

No matter how you are feeling concerning the merger, it’s clearly excellent news for Fitbit. Though Fitbit is mainly a family title, it really has a mediocre market share within the wearables business. In line with Statista, the corporate had a world market share of simply 2.6% in 2020. That’s peanuts in comparison with Apple’s 33.1% and even Xiaomi’s 13.6%.

This Google deal will undoubtedly improve that market share. With the immensity of Google behind the model, it will must make some really ghastly errors to not develop considerably over the subsequent few years.

The deal can also be excellent news for Google. Though the corporate has pinky-sworn to not use the well being information of customers for commercial functions, the deal will deliver the Google ecosystem to a a lot bigger wearable crowd. Google Assistant is already touchdown on the wrists of Fitbit customers, and this deal suggests much more Google properties will observe.

This all begs the query: what about Put on OS? The place does it stand within the Google Fitbit deal?

Google’s Put on OS: What occurs subsequent?

fossil gen 5 wear os logo 2

Credit score: Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

Ever since 2014, Google has had one wearables software program platform. It was initially often called Android Put on however turned the Put on OS we all know right this moment in 2018.

Over these previous seven years, sadly, Google has let the platform languish. It began off sturdy with a number of help from main manufacturers, together with Motorola, LG, Huawei, and even Samsung. As we speak, although, none of these corporations have a current Put on OS gadget in the marketplace. Smaller gamers equivalent to Fossil and Mobvoi are the principle torch-bearers for Put on OS these days.

See additionally: The most effective Put on OS watches you may get

Our personal Jimmy Westenberg just lately penned an impressive article on how Google has let Put on OS down through the years. You possibly can verify that out right here for extra.

With all that in thoughts, what about this Google Fitbit deal may presumably be excellent news for Put on OS? If in seven years with zero distractions Google couldn’t make the platform shine, what would change now that Fitbit is on board?

The way in which I see it, there are three potential outcomes for Put on OS now.

End result 1: Google abandons Put on OS completely

This is likely to be the almost definitely final result. The so-called Google Graveyard will get greater and larger yearly. Platforms and merchandise are within the graveyard that you’d by no means have thought would have ended up there. Google Play Music, Hangouts, Cloud Print, Inbox, and even Chrome Apps are all lifeless or are confirmed to die quickly.

With Put on OS primarily stagnant and proudly owning a dismal market share, it will have been a textbook case of future Google Graveyard materials even earlier than the Fitbit acquisition. With Fitbit on crew Google now, my cash is on Put on OS heading off into the sundown. It may not occur this 12 months and even the subsequent, however I really feel it’s an inevitability now.

End result 2: Google and Fitbit merge Put on OS and Fitbit OS

Folks prefer to dump on Put on OS quite a bit, however it’s really bought rather a lot going for it. Its app library is strong (actually far more so than Fitbit’s) and its openness permits for loads of innovation. That each one being stated, it’s additionally extremely resource-heavy which makes battery life and reminiscence administration very dangerous.

Since Put on OS’s massive energy is in apps and Fitbit’s massive weak spot is a scarcity thereof, merging the 2 software program methods collectively would appear like a great match. Nevertheless, this would possibly simply be an extension of Google killing off Put on OS. In different phrases, it will actually be simpler for Fitbit OS to remain because the platform for Fitbit units reasonably than porting a reconfigured Put on OS/Fitbit OS hybrid. That is very true once you keep in mind that Fitbit makes health trackers, too, which merely wouldn’t be capable to deal with Put on OS.

So, in essence, this wouldn’t be that a lot completely different from the earlier potential final result. Put on OS would take a backseat whereas Google and Fitbit work collectively to get Fitbit OS to be higher with a stronger app library. Since Put on OS already looks like an afterthought for Google, it actually wouldn’t grow to be extra of a precedence if its vitality is concentrated on Fitbit OS. Thus, we’re again at End result #1.

End result 3: Put on OS and Fitbit OS exist concurrently

That is essentially the most unlikely risk. The one motive this might occur is that different manufacturers depend on Put on OS to energy their wearables. If Google up and dropped Put on OS, it will trigger havoc for Fossil Group (Skagen, Misfit, Kate Spade, Michael Kors, and so on.), Mobvoi, Suunto, and others.

Moreover, Google has labored laborious to develop partnerships with Put on OS. It’s not simply these {hardware} corporations listed above, but additionally software program builders. It will be a logistical nightmare to drag the plug on the entire platform in a single day. The corporate would possibly suppose it higher to easily let Put on OS limp alongside whereas it focuses on Fitbit.

How lengthy may that go on, although? How lengthy till these {hardware} companions sense they’re on a shedding crew? How lengthy earlier than these software program devs begin creating for different platforms, equivalent to Fitbit OS? As soon as once more, with sufficient time, we begin getting again to End result #1.

Backside line: Google Fitbit deal is dangerous information for Put on OS followers

suunto 7 review this week wear os widget

Irrespective of which of these outcomes occurs, one factor is obvious: Put on OS doesn’t profit. In the long run, logic dictates that we come to see the top of the platform. Even within the impossible occasion that Google decides to maintain it alive and keep it because it has been doing, which means not a lot would seemingly change. We’d in all probability proceed to see the identical lax perspective in the direction of the platform’s success as we have now over the previous seven years.

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The most effective we are able to do now’s wait. Google has already began selling Fitbit merchandise on the Google Retailer. It’s solely a matter of time earlier than the longer term software program plans for Fitbit {hardware} come to mild. As soon as that occurs, we’ll have a greater thought of how that interprets to Put on OS.

Within the meantime, Put on OS followers ought to keep watch over the subsequent Fitbit merchandise. They could possibly be compelled to modify groups sooner or later.


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