Fitbit shares soar on news of diabetes monitoring feature on soon-to-be launched smartwatch
Friday, 8 September 2017 Fitness tracker company, Fitbit Inc (NYSE:FIT) got the thumbs up from investors after it announced a collaboration with glucose-monitoring device company DexCom Inc. to allow diabetics to monitor their blood sugar through Fitbit’s new soon-to-be launched smartwatch. Fitbit saw its shares closing up 9.8% at US$6.49 after the news on Thursday. In premarket, its shares continued to hit highs, trading up 11.68% at US$6.60. The company announced that it plans to make data from DexCom’s continuous glucose monitors available on its first smartwatch, which is now available for pre-orders. Fitbit to better compete with Apple's smartwatch The Ionic watch, which is priced from US$300 is set for delivery in October. Fitbit hopes to offer the diabetes monitoring feature in 2018. In a statement, the company said the collaboration would allow both companies to “develop and market products to help people better manage their diabetes and get a more complete picture of their overall health with easy-to-use mobile tools.” READ: Fitbit to challenge Apple Watch with launch of its own smartwatch The smartwatch offers some functions that do not require the use of a smartphone, which analysts believe will be a plus point and lead to higher sales. Further, a device that helps the around 400 mln people globally who suffer from diabetes, is seen as another positive factor. The Dexcom collaboration will allow users to see their glucose readings at a glance on their Ionic watch face against their fitness-tracker data whether they are running Dexcom’s app on a phone using an Apple or Android OS, said Adam Pellegrini, general manager of Fitbit Health Solutions. The move into the health care arena has set the stage for Fitbit to better compete with Apple’s smartwatch, analysts noted.
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