Google (Alphabet) in bid to buy Fitbit


According to Reuters, Google has made an offer to acquire Fitbit. The report explicitly states that there is no certainty that the offer will lead to a deal. But think about this… what could Google/Alphabet be thinking? Google’s existing wearable strategy is not working. Fitbit’s wearable strategy is not working. WearOS requires more processing power and battery life than can be had in a smartwatch, so the user experience is awful (and I’m being kind).

If that’s not a big enough head scratcher, who at Google thinks health conscious humans are going to willingly contribute their personal health information (PHI) to the Borg? Seriously? Google already knows more about you than you do. But… let’s pretend, since this is 100 percent hypothetical, that Google would agree to keep your personal health data private. Without data to turn into profits, there’s really no reason for Google to get into this at all.

This one fascinates me. FoodFighter, my side hustle, is all about collecting PHI to help win my daily battle with food. Our beta testers are happy to work with us precisely because we are not Apple or Google. They know we’re a small science-based company and our goal is specific – help our users maintain your goal weight. They know they are contributing PHI, but they also know it won’t be used for anything other than our stated goal. Google can’t come close to making that claim. And if they did, no one would believe them. We’ll be keeping a close “watch” on this one.


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Author’s note: This is not a sponsored post. I am the author of this article and it expresses my own opinions. I am not, nor is my company, receiving compensation for it.

About Shelly Palmer

Shelly Palmer is the Professor of Advanced Media in Residence at Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and CEO of The Palmer Group, a consulting practice that helps Fortune 500 companies with technology, media and marketing. Named LinkedIn’s “Top Voice in Technology,” he covers tech and business for Good Day New York, is a regular commentator on CNN and writes a popular daily business blog. He's a bestselling author, and the creator of the popular, free online course, Generative AI for Execs. Follow @shellypalmer or visit



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