Fitbit launches rivalry with Apple as it enters smartwatch market

Nichole Vega
August 30, 2017

Jim McCarthy, executive vice president of innovation and strategies partnerships at Visa Inc. said: "Partnering with Fitbit on its new Fitbit Pay service is another step forward in the growth of Internet of Things and shows how Visa is enabling companies across technology industry to help us all move forward towards a cashless future". One of the main criticisms of smartwatches is that they often prove functionless if not paired with a smartphone.

The Ionic doesn't ship until October, so it's hard to give a verdict on it now-but it looks like it could be a serious contender to the Apple Watch, especially for those who want a smartwatch that is more fitness-focused than productivity-focused.

James Park, co-founder at Fitbit, says: "With Ionic, we will deliver what consumers have not yet seen in a smartwatch". After months of rumors and reported delays, the company has finally launched its first smartwatch officially.

The latest Fitbit smartwatch will be sold for $299.95 Dollars and will hit the market in October. (NYSE:FIT) is set to release a smartwatch in October in an attempt to steal market share away from the Apple Watch. Ionic's basic features include music playing, mobile payment support, and displaying notifications.

Contrary to other smartwatches today, the Fitbit smartwatch was created with fitness tracker in mind first and traditional smartwatch second. "Consumers were just confused and unclear about what the goal of a smartwatch was when it first launched".

The device is priced slightly higher than the original Apple watch (entry level) that retails for $269 (15,000). Its body is made from nano-molded aluminum which slants downward from the face in an octagonal shape. The pixel count remains uncertain, but for what it's worth, Fitbit calls the resolution "crisp". The Apple Watch 2 only lasts about 24-36 hours with very light use. "It felt like it was playing it very safe", Becker said.

Banks working alongside Fitbit's new feature include Banco Santander, Bank of America, Capital One, HSBS, OCBC, Royal Bank of Canada, UOB and US Bank. It also has a guided breathing function and a SmartTrack intelligence that monitors the user's activity to adjust the tracking accordingly. It will have Global Positioning System tracking, on-device dynamic workouts, improved heart rate tracking, and water resistance up to 50 meters.

The best example is the new contactless payment system Fitbit is introducing with the watch, called Fitbit Pay. “Were delighted to work with Mastercard to deliver the freedom of contactless payments to our users.”.

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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