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We asked, you told us: Google buying Fitbit will be the death of Wear OS

Despite the optimistic outlook in the comments, the majority of readers fear the worst.

Published onFebruary 5, 2021

suunto 7 wear os logo on wrist

Google has long been criticized by users and critics for its tardy Wear OS development. Although the company has resisted culling it along with its other products in recent years, the Fitbit acquisition has thrown the future of the OS back into question.

Our C. Scott Brown makes a compelling case here for why the Fitbit purchase jeopardizes the future of Wear OS, but we also wanted to put the question to you. Do you think Google’s move on Fitbit is the final nail in the Wear OS coffin? Here’s what you told us.

Is Google’s acquisition of Fitbit the death knell for Wear OS?

Wear OS poll results

We gave you just two options in this poll. Although the results are pretty close, there is one option that stands above the other.

Just under 54% of respondents believe that Google’s purchase of Fitbit signals the death of Wear OS. It’s a surprisingly nihilistic view of Google’s wearables push, but it’s not without reason. The company has canned a number of promising products in recent years — products seemingly less stagnant than Wear OS.

See also: The best smartwatches you can buy | The best Wear OS watches you can get

Not everyone feels this way, though. Just over 46% of respondents believe that Wear OS won’t be dumped by Google. The comments largely reflect this, too. A number of readers believe that if Google shutters anything, it will be Fitbit itself. Others also highlight the possibility of the coexistence of the two platforms. Read more hot takes below.

Here’s what you told us

  • NothingUnknown: Google already killed Wear OS by neglecting the crap out of it. The more important question is whether the acquisition of Fitbit is the death of Fitbit.
  • Phantom: I think it’s easier for Google to fix and adapt all of this to Wear OS than to start from scratch. Combined with Fitbit’s sports tracking sensors and all their expertise in the field, it could work wonders and become the best smartwatch platform.
  • NateCress: Another possibility that isn’t considered here is that Fitbit OS is ultimately shuttered. It could be that Fitbit OS is maintained for existing Fitbit devices and that future Google Fitbit devices use an updated Wear OS 3.0 that incorporates the things Google learns from Fitbit OS while Google uses Fitbit as the new “Pixel” brand for Google branded wearables. We might even see a Wear OS lite version for trackers.
  • AJAS: Google will do what Google does. It will screw both Fitbit and Wear OS up.
  • Nundo: Absolutely not. Google has already made it clear they want to incorporate Fitbit’s services into Wear OS. What that means remains to be seen. The problem with Wear OS is that it’s a modified version of Android modified for Wearables. Fitbit on the other hand is made for Wearables from scratch but it’s very limited. Hope Google keeps both and balances them.
  • MarnixK: From where I see it, Google is going to handle this the exact same way they’re handling the transition from Android TV to Google TV right now.
  • Kris: One argument against Google abandoning WearOS entirely is the recent work done on the Wear library, the latest update being January 21st. Google developers are not cheap so the fact they are putting developer resources into the Wear library hints they plan to support WearOS for the foreseeable future.

That’s it for this Wear OS poll. Thanks to those who voted and commented. If you have any additional thoughts about Wear OS and Fitbit or the results of this poll be sure to drop them down below.

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