While the wearables market (tech you can wear) struggles to gain traction, the FitBit may be the first product failures. All that needs to happen for these wrists devices to fail, is for watch manufactures to add the same electronics into their watches or at least their watch bands.
Take a look at Nike. On April 18, CNET reported that Nike laid off a major portion of the team behind the “FuelBand.” That included 55 engineers and other development specialists. Likely Nike will completely withdraw from the wearable tech market. But at least Nike has a revenue stream to stay in the market for a while.
However, do you think that watch makers in Switzerland are asleep? They can easily add an accelerometer and bluetooth to a high-end watch band and BOOM – the FitBit & FuleBand are dead. Swiss watchmakers have a vested interest in making products for the wrist besides the fitness feature.
Most people are not going to wear three, four or even two watch bands. So single function wrist band devices are going to lose out to one device. The one that people wear on their wrists. And not everyone even wears a watch anymore. So the novelty of a one off device is short lived.
Smart watch makers are even having a hard time giving people a compelling reason to wear a smart watch. So how long will it be until they start adding a bazillion features. … not long.
Novelty is not a safe business model. The number of people that run or walk with their smart phone, means that fitness monitoring will be added to the phone, before general acceptance of these wrist bands takes off.
Nice idea … but the fitness feature is not a good enough stand alone feature. Remember the disposable cameras that once were so popular at weddings? They’ve been disposed of, replaced by mobile phones. And so, the fitness band’s will be incorporated into other products … and themselves – be banned.
This is how technology goes. Everyone thinks an idea makes sense as a one-off device. Any one-feature device, that naturally makes sense to be incorporated into another device, gets swallowed up. Absorbed into the larger metaphor. Remember cameras with a separate flash. Absorbed into the camera. Only devices that stand-alone survive. While there are some TV, remote control apps, the TV remote survives. It does so because the remote is a device that justifies it’s existence as a stand alone product. Not the FitBit. …
It’s Doomed… But I have to confess being in possession of a Samsung watch. Bless me, Father, for I have sinned !