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Google completes its Fitbit acquisition



Fitbit Charge 2 heart rate and training bracelet.

Source: Amazon

Alphabet-owned Google announced on Thursday that they have finally completed the acquisition of Fitbit, which was first announced in November 2019.

The agreement had been the subject of a month-long investigation into whether it could further push Google̵

7;s market position in the online advertising business if it uses Fitbit data to customize ads. But while Google said the deal was terminated, Reuters said the U.S. Department of Justice’s investigation into the merger is still ongoing. Enforcement agencies usually have strict time windows to block mergers before they are completed, but can still bring an enforcement action at any time.

A spokesman for the DOJ was not immediately available for comment.

Fitbit can help increase Google’s presence in the portable market. While Google does not build its own smartwatches or training trackers, it does provide the software used by other companies to build smartwatches. However, they have not provided as much thorough information for workouts, sleep and other calculations that are important for people who want to improve their health.

“This agreement has always been about devices, not data, and we have been clear from the beginning that we want to protect the privacy of Fitbit users,” said Google Senior Vice President of Devices and Services Rick Osterloh in a statement.

“We worked with global regulators on an approach that meets consumer privacy expectations, including a series of binding commitments confirming Fitbit users’ health and wellness data will not be used for Google ads, and this data will be separated from other Google ads,” he added.

The company said it will continue to allow Fitbit users to choose to connect to third-party services so that they can still connect various health and wellness apps to their Fitbit accounts.

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