Since Google paid Fitbit $2.1 billion more than two years ago, there hasn’t been much product integration between the two businesses’ offerings. This fall, it seems, that will change. In addition to a sleek Fitbit connection on the incoming Pixel Watch, it appears that the anticipated Fitbit Sense 2 and Versa 4 may also integrate with Google Wallet.
According to 9to5Google, Google Wallet, which includes Google Pay, is reportedly adding Fitbit smartwatch functionality in the most recent version of Android’s Play Services. This contains a brand-new menu with visuals that resemble a Fitbit smartwatch. Additionally, the photos are identified as “Fitbit watch illustrations.” However, it’s unclear whether Google Wallet will completely replace Fitbit Pay or if it will serve as an alternative, similar to how Samsung smartwatches currently let users download Google Wallet. 9to5 According to Google, there may also be a way to integrate Google Wallet with Fitbit Pay in order to make the service available for earlier watches.
Google Assistant is now the only functional link between Fitbit and Google on the wrist.
The only virtual assistant available on Fitbit devices prior to the Versa 2 was Alexa. After Google acquired Fitbit, Google Assistant was subsequently made available on the Versa 3 and Sense. Fitbit devices were among the first wearables to provide a choice of two digital assistants as a result. On Samsung Galaxy smartwatches running Wear OS 3, you can currently do the same.
The decision to include Google Assistant on Fitbits was simple. Fitbit’s gadgets already have Alexa on them. Google would never allow its greatest opponent in the field of digital assistants to be the only choice on one of its devices. But the decision to include Google Wallet could spell Fitbit Pay’s demise. The service has historically been a little picky. Though widely supported by banks and public transportation networks (at least in the United States), it is a minor player in the contactless payments industry. And unlike Google Pay, Apple Pay, or Samsung Pay, its user interface isn’t as fluid.
In any event, the volume of Sense 2 and Versa 4 leaks indicates that Fitbit will probably announce something new shortly. With Google stepping up its wearable initiatives, we should be able to learn more than just about Fitbit’s future trajectory. However, it seems for the time being that the two businesses are moving toward more integration, similar to Google and Nest. The real question is whether Fitbit can sustain its own identity over time, or if a Google Fitbit Versa 5 will be available by this time next year.