A Fitbit for children: it will arrive within the year and will be equipped with 4G connectivity in order to offer always active tracking and communication functions. Although the company has been operating in the smartwatch sector for over ten years, that of children is still a poorly explored market and for Fitbit this is a target now more easily reached thanks to the recent acquisition of the Hong Kong startup Doki Technologies which would have the necessary technologies to proceed quickly in this direction.
In fact, this company has recently announced to its customers that its devices – dokiWatch, dokiWatch S and dokiPal – will stop being produced starting from July 1st, but in the email there was no mention of the acquisition by Fitbit .
According to rumors, in reality this merger has taken place and even a minimal confirmation can be found in the commercial register, whose current director, Andrew Paul Missan, is also the Fitbit Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary . In the same document it appears that this job of mr. Missan active from 22 October 2019, a date which at this point could also coincide with the acquisition of the company by Fitbit.
If these dates were right, it would mean that the Hong Kong company was particularly lucky given that a few days later Fitbit was absorbed by Google for 2.1 billion dollars. It would also mean that the Mountain View company was aware of the acquisition in progress by Fitbit: however it does not mean that we should expect a Google branded smartwatch for children.
Let's go back to the reason that would have pushed Fitbit to acquire Doki: this company already has a platform that includes functions ranging from monitoring to security, from video calls to phone calls via app. To say, Doki's latest smartwatch, the dokiPal, even includes a physical "Doki SIM" with unlimited data in over 50 countries for $ 9.99 a month. Now, it is not clear whether all these functions will be transferred to the smartwatch for children in the planning phase, while it is very likely that Fitbit's fitness functions, at least some of them, should instead be implemented.
The fact that Fitbit is exploring this market still makes sense. To date, the company has produced two fitness trackers for children (Ace), but both are without cellular connectivity, useful both for tracking position and for always active communication. For another, a market where there are already several competitors: according to IDC data, 15 million smartwatches for children were shipped last year – by BBK, a company that manages better known brands such as Vivo, Oppo, OnePlus and Realme – with cellular connectivity , of which 97% were directed to China.
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