Fitbit

Survey ranks Apple as #1 wearables maker

In a report issued Thursday market research firm Strategy Analytics said that Apple has overtaken Fitbit to become the world's leading vendor of devices worn on one's body, capturing sixteen percent of the global market for wearables in the March quarter.

Apple sold an estimated 3.5 million watches during the three-month period ending in March, a 59 percent increase over the 2.2 million Apple Watch units sold in the year-ago quarter.

According to Strategy Analytics data, rival Fitbit shipped 2.9 million units in March, marking a significant 36 percent drop from the 4.5 million Fitbits shipped in the year-ago quarter.

Strategy Analytics stated:

Fitbit has lost its wearables leadership to Apple, due to slowing demand for its fitnessbands and a late entry to the emerging smartwatch market.

Fitbit’s shipments, revenue, pricing and profit are all shrinking at the moment and they have a major fight on their hands to recover this year.

The new Apple Watch Series 2 is selling “relatively well” in the US, UK and elsewhere, due to “enhanced styling, intensive marketing and a good retail presence,” said the research firm.

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Chinese startup Xiaomi shipped 3.4 million wearable units, good for a cool fifteen percent marketshare worldwide. Demand for Xiaomi's popular Mi Band fitness range was broadly flat across its core markets of Asia.

Fitbit thus far has mostly focused on fitness bands and related accessories.

That could change soon as the company is expected to add smartwatches to its portfolio. However, if an image leaked earlier this week (above) is anything to go by, Fitbit's upcoming smartwatch slated for release this fall won't win any beauty contest.

Fitbit also plans on releasing a pair of Bluetooth earbuds, codenamed “Parkside” internally, alongside the smartwatch, according to two of Yahoo Finance’s sources. A photo of the upcoming $150 earbuds (below) was leaked to Yahoo Finance earlier this week.

Last December, Fitibit acquired software assets of the struggling smartwatch maker Pebble for a mere $40 million. Following the acquisition, Fitbit put the last nail in Pebble's coffin by cancelling all new hardware that Pebble had in the pipeline.

Global wearables shipments reached 22 million units during the March quarter, marking a 21 percent increase year-over-year from 18.2 million in the year-ago quarter. Stronger demand for new smartwatch models in North America, Western Europe and Asia drove the uptick, said Strategy Analytics.

The full Wearables Market Data repot is available on the Strategy Analytics website.

How to mute progress updates from your friends and hide your own data in Activity sharing

Activity sharing is a tried and tested way to boost your app engagement by pitting your own fitness data against others that are willing to share theirs. Fitbit and Nike knew for a while of the extra motivation released when someone else monitors your activity, Apple knows full well since iOS 10 and watchOS 3. Agreeing to share and relay your activity on Apple Watch can hence be an inspirational thing, but it also results in a considerable increase of wrist-buzzing every day.

The following tutorial on no account is an insider’s tip, however if you have committed to sharing your activity and your patience with the daily activity updates from your friend is starting to wear thin, remember that there is an option to mute those notifications. The tutorial also demonstrates how to hide your own activity from that friend, in case you don’t want them to know about your newest calories crushing workout just yet.

Fitbit buys Pebble’s software assets, but cancels new hardware

Fitbit, the maker of popular activity and fitness trackers, has officially acquired Pebble. The deal was finalized this morning, both companies have said.

The acquisition includes all of Pebble's software assets, but excludes any hardware. Yup, that's right—looks like the Pebble smartwatch is officially dead.

“Due to various factors, Pebble is no longer able to operate as an independent entity,” the company said. “We have made the tough decision to shut down the company and no longer manufacture Pebble devices.”

Fitbit said to be buying Pebble for around $40 million

Fitbit is set to acquire troubled smartwatch-maker Pebble, according to a report from The Information. The deal is said to be mainly about the company's intellectual property and software, and will likely result in the end of Pebble hardware.

In a subsequent report, TechCrunch says a source close to the startup pegged the deal in the neighborhood of $34 to $40 million, and it will just barely cover its debts. In the past, it was rumored Pebble received offers as high as $740 million.

Fitbit unveils fashionable Alta activity tracker with swappable bands

Wearable maker Fitbit on Wednesday announced a brand new activity tracker with fashionable design that gives you the ability to swap bands.

Featuring five days of usage on a single charge and a selection of bands, including leather ones and a stainless steel bracelet, Fitbit hopes to appeal to the burgeoning market of stylish tech gadgets that are worn on one's body.

The Alta has the usual assortment of movement-tracking sensors and includes a slim touchscreen OLED display that shows basic stats and notifications relayed from a smartphone.

Fitbit unveils new ‘Blaze’ fitness smartwatches

Wearable company Fitbit at CES 2016 in Las Vegas announced a brand new lineup of fitness-focused smartwatches, marketed under the Blaze moniker. Featuring a sleek design and easily interchangeable accessories, the Blaze lineup offers an enhanced fitness and workout experience with advanced coaching and other features.

All devices are outfitted with a color touchscreen, have a built-in heart rate tracker and SmartTrack exercise recognition and support interchangeable bands and frames.