Fitbit partnering with Medtronic on diabetes monitoring system
- James Park, Fitbit founder and CEO, announced interest in forming future partnerships with the healthcare industry to save lives, reports VentureBeat. The fitness tracking company’s chief had previously announced his company’s partnership with Medtronic, a medical technology company, in a venture involving diabetes monitoring.
- Fitbit has seen some struggle as of late. The company was hit with a class-action suit by angry customers alleging its wearable heart-monitoring technology wasn’t accurate, and this summer, its stock dropped from $47.60 to $8, where it still currently hovers.
- VentureBeat says that by forging deals with prominent healthcare companies like Medtronic, Fitbit can broaden its market beyond fitness. Recently, the company also acquired Pebble, another wearable maker.
Like most savvy business chiefs, Park wants to diversify his company. But he might run into regulations in the healthcare industry that are much stiffer than those monitoring the fitness industry. As VentureBeat pointed out, the company's entry into medical technology might raise questions from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which could halt or slow production of the company’s products.
Fitbit is a fairly popular brand of wearable that has made inroads in the business wellness community, especially as digital health has entered public consciousness. Whether or not Fitbit itself will continue to see success is still an unknown, but wearables and apps that seek to bridge the gap between workplace wellness and actual healthcare is a strongly developing trend. Some experts have claimed that workplaces will be more involved in digital health tracking of employees in the future, and this development certainly follows that line of thought.